Some Lovers, Steven Sater & Burt Bacharach's New Musical, Opens at The Old Globe in CA
By Kenneth Jones
Some Lovers, a new pop musical that takes a page from O. Henry's holiday-themed "The Gift of the Magi," with songs by music legend Burt Bacharach and Tony Award-winning lyricist Steven Sater, opens Dec. 7 following previews from Nov. 26 at The Old Globe in San Diego.
Will Frears directs Jenni Barber, Jason Danieley, Michelle Duffy and Andrew Mueller in composer Bacharach and lyricist-librettist Sater's show, which is Bacharach's first original stage musical since Promises, Promises. Performances continue to Dec. 31.
Sater won the Tony Award for Best Book and Best Score (with Duncan Sheik) for Spring Awakening. Bacharach's pop hits (many with lyricist Hal David) include "The Look of Love," "Walk On By," "Say a Little Prayer," "Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head" and more.
In Some Lovers, the four actors play young and old versions of the same couple, Molly and Ben.
According to the Old Globe, "On Christmas Eve, estranged lovers Molly and Ben are haunted by the memory of happier times, and like the unforgettable melody of a favorite song, their memories conspire to bring them together again. [It's] a timeless love story that takes place over 20 years…"
Music supervision is by Lon Hoyt. Choreography is by Denis Jones. Some Lovers runs in the in-the-round Sheryl and Harvey White Theatre, part of the Globe's Conrad Prebys Theatre Center in the Balboa Park area of San Diego, CA.
"The show is technically very elaborate because the entire play is a story of memory," Sater told Playbill.com. "It's Proustian in a way because you're coming in and out of time and memory through song and scenes. There's a magical element to the play because past and present are interacting in the forms of the young and the older versions of oneselves in this debate of the soul that's happening on Christmas Eve.
"The story is anchored in the actual story of 'The Gift of the Magi.' These two lovers meet on Christmas Eve and her favorite story is 'The Gift of the Magi.' As they spend time together over the years, they have a ritual. They stay at the Plaza, they read each other the story and they give the gift that will mean the world to each other. The whole play is about giving the part of yourself that you hold most dear: the challenge of that."
Jenni Barber (Young Molly) has appeared on New York stages in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Sam Mendes' Bridge Project, From Up Here and Cactus Flower; Jason Danieley (Ben) has appeared in Broadway's Next to Normal, Curtains, Candide and The Full Monty (also on the West End); Michelle Duffy (Molly) originated roles in the world premieres of Leap of Faith, Continental Divide, An Italian Straw Hat and Mask; and Andrew Mueller (Young Ben) recently appeared in the world premiere of For the Boys and received a Jeff Award for his work in Big River in Chicago.
The creative team includes Takeshi Kata (scenic design), Jenny Mannis (costume design), Ben Stanton (lighting design), Leon Rothenberg (sound design), Jonathan Tunick (orchestrator), AnnMarie Milazzo (vocal designer), Jim Carnahan, CSA (casting) and Matthew Silver (stage manager).
Director Frears' Off-Broadway credits include Year Zero (Second Stage Theatre Uptown), Still Life (MCC Theater), Rainbow Kiss (The Play Company), The Water's Edge (Second Stage Theatre), Pen (Playwrights Horizons), Terrorism (The New Group/The Play Company), Omnium Gatherum (Variety Arts Center), Where We're Born and God Hates the Irish (Rattlestick Playwrights Theater), Get What You Need (Atlantic 453) and Kid-Simple (Summer Play Festival).
For tickets and information, visit www.TheOldGlobe.org.
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