Lisa O'Hare to Join Jefferson Mays in A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder on Broadway
By Adam Hetrick
British actress Lisa O'Hare, who starred in the Hartford Stage-Old Globe Theatre premiere productions of the new musical A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, will repeat her work in the upcoming Broadway production this fall, according to an Equity casting notice.
O'Hare originated the role of Sibella and is set to reprise her performance. O'Hare's stage appearances also include Mary Poppins, My Fairy Lady, Cabaret and Gigi. A Gentleman's Guide will mark her Broadway debut.
As previously reported, Tony Award winner Jefferson Mays (I Am My Own Wife) will also repeat his work, playing eight roles in the frisky romp about a line of heirs, family money and homicide. Representatives for the production could not confirm casting beyond Mays' role.
Previews will begin Oct. 22 towards a Nov. 17 opening night at the Walter Kerr Theatre. It has a book by Robert L. Freedman, music by Steven Lutvak and lyrics by Freedman and Lutvak.
A Broadway run of the production had been expected following strong critical notices, including a rave from the New York Times when it premiered in Connecticut. Hartford Stage artistic director Darko Tresnjak stages the production. The musical is based on the novel "Israel Rank" by Roy Horniman.
Additional casting will be announced at a later date.
Here's how the dark musical comedy is billed: "When Monty Navarro, the black sheep of the D'Ysquith family, finds out he is ninth in line to inherit a dukedom, he decides to eliminate the other eight heirs standing in his way — all played by Tony Award winner Jefferson Mays (I Am My Own Wife). Set in England's elegant Edwardian era, this witty music hall comedy explores how low we'll go to make it to the top."
Robert L. Freedman (book and lyrics) was nominated for an Emmy Award and a Writers Guild Award for the ABC miniseries "Life with Judy Garland: Me and My Shadows" starring Judy Davis. He won the Writers Guild Award for HBO's "A Deadly Secret" and was also nominated for ABC's "Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella" starring Brandy and Whitney Houston. He was a finalist for the Humanitas Prize for the GLAAD Award-winning "What Makes a Family." For his musical theatre work with Steven Lutvak, Freedman won the Kleban Award for Outstanding Lyric Writing, the Fred Ebb Award for Musical Theatre Songwriting and the California Musical Theatre Award. Their musical Campaign of the Century has been performed at the New York Musical Theatre Festival and the Chicago Humanities Festival. He is the co-author, with Faye Greenberg, of the one-man play The Beast of Broadway: The Life and Times of David Merrick.
Steven Lutvak (music, lyrics and vocal Arrangements) wrote the title track to Paramount's hit film "Mad Hot Ballroom." Lutvak and Freedman also wrote "Campaign of the Century," which was presented at the Chicago Humanities Festival and the New York Musical Theatre Festival, winning the California Musical Theater Award Competition from the Beverly Hills Theatre Guild. Lutvak's other musicals include The Wayside Motor Inn, Almost September (eight San Francisco Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Awards and seven Dramalogue Awards for its West Coast premiere) and Esmeralda, for which he won a New American Works Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. His other awards include two Jonathan Larson Performing Arts Foundation Grants and the Johnny Mercer Emerging American Songwriter Award. As a singer/songwriter, Lutvak has performed at Carnegie Hall, Carnegie Recital Hall and around the country.
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