Brazil Production of Chaplin Will Open in 2014
By Michael Gioia
Producers of Broadway's Chaplin, about the life of silent film star Charlie Chaplin, announced Jan. 4 that a production of the musical will open in São Paulo, Brazil, at the Teatro Procópio Ferreira in April 2014 by Chaim XYZ Produções. The current Broadway production continues through Jan. 6.
As previously announced, AWA Partners will present a U.S. national tour of the new musical, which is set to launch in the fall of 2014, and plans for an international world tour are in the works.
Casting has not yet been announced for the musical's national tour or Brazil productions.
Chaplin features music and lyrics by Christopher Curtis, a relative unknown who played piano at Chez Josephine in the midtown theatre district, and a book by three-time Tony Award winner Thomas Meehan (Annie, The Producers, Hairspray) and Curtis.
The Broadway musical, which officially opened at the Barrymore Theatre Sept. 10, 2012, stars critically acclaimed Barrymore Award winner Rob McClure in the title role. Previews began Aug. 21.
McClure, who previously starred on Broadway in Avenue Q, originated the role of Chaplin in 2010 at La Jolla Playhouse, where the musical received its world premiere under the title of Limelight; that staging received Craig Noel Awards for Outstanding Lead Performance in a Musical (McClure) and Outstanding New Musical.
Drama Desk nominee Warren Carlyle (Finian's Rainbow; Hugh Jackman, Back on Broadway), choreographer of the out-of-town tryout, returned as director and choreographer for Chaplin's Broadway bow.
Joining McClure in Chaplin are Jim Borstelmann (The Addams Family, Young Frankenstein) as Alf Reeves, Chaplin's longtime friend and production manager; Jenn Colella (High Fidelity, Urban Cowboy) as Hedda Hopper, a powerful gossip columnist determined to bring down the Little Tramp; Erin Mackey (Anything Goes, Wicked) as the young Oona O'Neill, Chaplin's last wife; Michael McCormick (Elf, Curtains) as producer Sennett, McGranery/Emcee; Tony Award nominee Christiane Noll (Ragtime, Jekyll & Hyde) as Chaplin's mother, Hannah, who appears through a series of flashbacks; Zachary Unger (Encores! Merrily We Roll Along) as Young Charlie/Jackie; and Wayne Alan Wilcox (The Normal Heart) as older brother Sydney Chaplin.
Rounding out the ensemble are Justin Bowen, Emilee Dupré, Sara Edwards, Leslie Donna Flesner, Lisa Gajda, Timothy Hughes, Ethan Khusidman, Ian Liberto, Renée Marino, Michael Mendez, Sarah O'Gleby, Hayley Podschun, Adam Rogers, William Ryall, Eric Santagata and Emily Tyra.
Here's how producers characterize the new musical: "From the slums of London to the heights of Hollywood, Chaplin is the showbiz Broadway musical about the silent film legend the world couldn't stop talking about — Charlie Chaplin. The brand new 24-person musical reveals the man behind the legend, the undeniable genius that forever changed the way America went to the movies."
Chaplin is produced on Broadway by the Rich Entertainment Group, Roy Gabay, and John and Claire Caudwell, the Viertel Routh Frankel Baruch Group, Chunsoo Shin/Waxman-Dokton and Broadway Across America.
The Barrymore Theatre is located at 243 W. 47th Street. Tickets, which range in price from $66.50 to $135.50, can be purchased through Telecharge or by calling (212) 239-6200.
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