PHOTO CALL: Peter and the Starcatcher, With Adam Chanler-Berat and Christian Borle, on Broadway
By Matthew Blank
Peter and the Starcatcher, the theatrical storytelling feat of language and stagecraft that traces the legend of Neverland and the boy who would never grow up, began Broadway previews March 28 at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre.
Peter and the Starcatcher opened to critical acclaim Off-Broadway at the New York Theatre Workshop March 9, 2011, where it extended its run twice. The entire Off-Broadway cast returns for the Broadway transfer.
Tony Award winner Rick Elice (Jersey Boys, The Addams Family) penned the stage adaptation — based on the novel by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson — which is co-directed by Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson Tony Award nominee Alex Timbers and Tony winner Roger Rees (The Addams Family, Nicholas Nickleby).
Peter and the Starcatcher will officially open on Broadway April 15. The production uses inventive staging, a company of 12 actors and the imagination of the audience to conjure the world of Neverland and explore how a young orphan ultimately became Peter Pan.
Tony Award nominee and "Smash" star Christian Borle (Legally Blonde, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Spamalot) stars as devious pirate Black Stache, with Tony nominee Celia Keenan-Bolger (Merrily We Roll Along, 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Les Miserables, Bachelorette) as Molly and Adam Chanler-Berat (Next to Normal, Rent) as Boy.
"I've always thought of this play as a celebration of what it means to be a theatre person, a theatre lover and a theatre watcher," Chanler-Berat told Playbill.com. Co-director Rees added, "The first time Peter Pan was visible to us was in 1904 when he alighted on the windowsill in Wendy Darling's bedroom. This play talks about where Peter Pan came from before that."
Completing the cast are Teddy Bergman (Seven Minutes in Heaven), Arnie Burton (The 39 Steps), Matt D'Amico (Fizz), Kevin Del Aguila (Jacques Brel...), Carson Elrod (Reckless), Greg Hildreth (Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson), David Rossmer (Don't Quit Your Night Job), Betsy Hogg (Fiddler on the Roof), Orville Mendoza (Pacific Overtures), Jason Ralph (All's Well That Ends Well) and John Sanders (Mamma Mia!).
Steven Hoggett (American Idiot, Black Watch, Once) created the movement for the production, which has set design by Bloody Bloody Tony nominee Donyale Werle, costume design by Paloma Young, lighting design by Jeff Croiter, sound design by Darron L West and musical direction by Marco Paguia.
Disney Theatrical Productions commissioned the work, which is not billed as a musical, but features a handful of songs by Wayne Barker. Nancy Nagel Gibbs, Greg Schaffert, Eva Price and Tom Smedes produce the Broadway engagement.
Peter and the Starcatcher began life at the La Jolla Playhouse as part of the company's Page To Stage Play Development program.
The Brooks Atkinson Theatre is located at 256 West 47th Street. For tickets visit Ticketmaster.com.
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