Acclaimed Immersive Musical Here Lies Love Will Return for Commercial Off-Broadway Engagement at the Public
By Adam Hetrick
Dates have been confirmed for the Off-Broadway return of Here Lies Love, the immersive David Byrne-Fatboy Slim musical about the lives of Filipino leaders Imelda and Ferdinand Marcos, which will begin performances March 24 at its original home, the Public Theater.
The original Public Theater production of Here Lies Love was extended four times during its initial run last season at the Public's LuEsther Theater. The Public had been working to find a suitable venue for the acclaimed musical that ended its run July 28, 2013.
The new, open-ended commercial run will officially open in early April at the LuEsther, where the musical premiered. It is produced by Joey Parnes and Emursive (Randy Weiner, Arthur Karpati, Jonathan Hochwald). The Public is not putting any of its own money into the new commercial run of the property.
An on-sale ticket date has not been announced.
Tony nominee Alex Timbers stages the 90-minute production that opened to strong critical notices April 23, 2013. The immersive musical, which centers around the First Lady of the Philippines, encourages audiences to wear a comfortable pair of shoes for the performance. Set within a dance-club atmosphere, theatregoers stand and move with the actors for the duration of the show. Dancing is also encouraged.
Here Lies Love has music by David Byrne of The Talking Heads and DJ Fatboy Slim, with lyrics by Byrne. A starry concept album of the same title was released by Byrne in 2010.
The staging is expected to reunite much of the original Off-Broadway cast.
A cast album of the musical was recorded during the initial run and is also expected to be released by Nonesuch Records.
"Here Lies Love is coming back to the theater that gave it birth, the perfect site for this astonishing site-specific show," Public Theater Oskar Eustis said in a statement. "The demand for David Byrne and Alex Timbers' brilliant musical was far more than we could accommodate in our original run, so we offered up our space to the commercial producers for what we know will be a long and satisfying return engagement. There really is no place like home."
The production received the Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding New Off-Broadway Musical; an Obie Award for Outstanding Music and Lyrics; Drama Desk Awards for Outstanding Music, Lighting Design, and Projection Design and Theatre World Awards for Ruthie Ann Miles (Imelda Marcos) and Conrad Ricamora (Aquino).
Ruthie Ann Miles (Avenue Q, Band Geeks) and Jose Llana (Spelling Bee, Flower Drum Song) co-starred as Imelda and Ferdinand Marcos, respectively.
The original cast also featured Renee Albulario, Melody Butiu, Natalie Cortez, Debralee Daco, Joshua Dela Cruz, Kelvin Moon Loh, Jeigh Madjus, Ruthie Ann Miles, Maria-Christina Oliveras, Conrad Ricamora, Trevor Salter and Janelle Velasquez.
According to the Public, "Within a pulsating dance club atmosphere, David Byrne and Fatboy Slim deconstruct the astonishing journey of Filipina First Lady Imelda Marcos retracing her meteoric rise from childhood to her subsequent descent into infamy and disgrace at the end of the People Power Revolution. Here Lies Love is neither a period piece nor a biography, neither a play nor a traditional musical but a wholly immersive theatrical event combining songs influenced by four decades of dance music, adrenaline-fueled choreography, and a remarkable 360-degree scenic and video environment to go beyond Imelda’s near-mythic obsession with shoes and explore the true tragic consequences of power and responsibility."
Here Lies Love has set design by David Korins, costume design by Clint Ramos, lighting design by Justin Townsend, sound design by M. L. Dogg and Cody Spencer, and projection design by Peter Nigrini. Annie-B Parson is choreographer.
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