Blues and Jazz Musical, The City Club, With Kristen Martin, Andrew Pandaleon, Opens Off-Broadway April 23
By Michael Gioia
The American premiere of The City Club, which is billed as "an original blues and jazz musical about the indisputable intoxication of music," officially opens Off-Broadway April 23, following previews that began April 3, at the Minetta Lane Theatre.
The new musical, featuring a score by James Compton, Tony Demeur and Tim Brown with a book by Glenn M. Stewart, is directed by Mitchell Maxwell (Bells Are Ringing, Damn Yankees) and choreographed by Lorin Latarro (American Idiot associate choreographer).
The cast includes Kristen Martin (Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark) as Crystal Labelle, Andrew Pandaleon (The History of War at NYMF) as Chaz Davenport, Ana Hoffman (Dreamgirls national tour) as Maddy, Peter Bradbury (That Championship Season) as The Lieutenant, Kenny Brawner (The Total Bent at the Public) as Parker Brown, Autumn Guzzardi (9 to 5) as Rose, Kaitlin Mesh (West Side Story) as Lily, Patrick O'Neill (On a Clear Day…) as Jacobus "Jake" Olsen, Emily Tyra (Hugh Jackman, Back on Broadway) as Candy and Robert J. Townsend (Mamma Mia! national tour) as Prince Royale.
The City Club, according to producers, "is a twisting noir morality tale of intrigue, murder, corruption and sex supported by one of the most seductive blues and jazz scores written for the stage in decades. It is the story of Charles 'Chaz' Davenport, a young privileged scion of a spectacularly corrupt family whose vice grip on their city is as tight as it is inescapable. The sins of the father have visited unimaginable wealth on the son. Obsessed with music and the people who write it, play it, sing it and worship it, Chaz has opened The City Club, a Mecca of pure and unbridled musical genius, opportunity and escape. The club's instant success attracts his father's enemies who bring with them extremely creative and very effective revenge tactics. The universe inside the club spirals as low as city outside. Absinthe becomes the drink of choice, heroine the desired high and women the most valuable form of currency."
Other members of the creative team include musical director Jonathan Lynch, scenic designer Rob Bissinger, costume designer David C. Woolard, lighting designer David F. Segal and sound designer Carl Casella.
The City Club premiered at the Edinburgh International Festival and was given an industry reading in January 2011 at Theatre Row’s Beckett Theatre. The musical is being produced Off-Broadway by The City Club, LP.
The Minetta Lane Theatre is located at 18 Minetta Lane (south of West 3rd Street between MacDougal Street and Sixth Avenue). For more information and tickets, call (800) 982-2787 or visit Ticketmaster.com or www.thecityclubbroadway.com.
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