Marc Kudisch, David Garrison, Anne-Carolyn Bird, Lauren Worsham Star in Mr. Gershwin Goes to Washington Oct. 20
By Andrew Gans
The New York Festival of Song opens its 2012-13 season with Mr. Gershwin Goes to Washington, an original concert put together by music-theatre historian Laurence Maslon for Ira Gershwin’s centennial in 1997, Oct. 20 at 8 PM at Merkin Concert Hall.
Directed by Maslon, the cast features three-time Tony Award nominee Marc Kudisch as presidential hopeful John P. Wintergreen; Anne-Carolyn Bird as Mary Turner, Wintergreen's devoted wife and aspiring first-lady-to-be; Lauren Worsham as femme fatale Diana Devereaux; and in six comic roles, David Garrison.
The evening gathers George and Ira Gershwin's satirical songs about politics—including “Of Thee I Sing," “Love is Sweeping the Country,” "Union Square" and “Strike Up the Band"—into a "headline narrative about the trials and tribulations of presidential hopeful John P. Wintergreen," according to press notes.
Conductor and composer Joseph Thalken teams with NYFOS artistic director Steven Blier for a piano duo. A member of the political news media will host the evening as a surprise guest narrator. (A NYFOS On Tour encore performance will be presented by Vocal Arts DC at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC, on Oct. 22 at 7:30 PM.)
Subscriptions for the entire four-concert Merkin Hall series are available for $140-$200, with more information available online at www.nyfos.org/subscriptions. Single tickets are available for $40-$55, with discount tickets available for students at $10, and a limited number of advanced purchase Real Deal tickets at $20. Every concert is accompanied by a post-show wine reception with the cast.
The concert draws from the Gershwin brothers’ three political musicals (Strike Up the Band, Of Thee I Sing and Let ‘Em Eat Cake) that were originally written in collaboration with George S. Kaufman and Morrie Ryskind.
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