Spelling Bee Tony Winner Pens New Book for William Finn Musical Romance in Hard Times

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12 Aug 2014

Barrington Stage Company will present the BSC Musical Theatre Lab new workshop production of Tony Award winner William Finn's Romance in Hard Times, featuring a new book by Finn's Spelling Bee collaborator, Tony winner Rachel Sheinkin.

Romance in Hard Times will begin performances Aug. 14 for a run through Aug. 31 at the St. Germain Stage, located at the Sydelle and Lee Blatt Performing Arts Center in Pittsfield, MA.

According to BSC, Finn will revisit his score and, along with his Spelling Bee collaborator, Sheinkin, re-imagine the musical's book for "new hard times."

Directed by Joe Calarco with choreography by Josh Prince and musical direction by Jeff Tanski, the cast features David Benoit, Lance Fletke, Alan H. Green, Demond Green, Anne Kanengeiser, Theresa Kloos, Alix Korey, Andrea Leach, Michael Mandell, Christina Acosta Robinson, Aaron Serotsky, Matthew Gregory, Gabriel Elizabeth Kadian, Jordana McMahon and Ross Yoder.

Here's how BSC bills the show: "A soup kitchen in the Depression. A pregnant woman refuses to give birth until she sees more hope in the world. Former socialites, unemployed actors, capitalists down on their luck, and Eleanor Roosevelt try to get through the Depression with some dignity intact."



The design team of Romance in Hard Times includes Brian Prather (scenic design), Sara Jean Tosetti (costume design), Robert Brown (lighting design), Patrick Calhoun (sound design) and Michael Andrew Rodgers (production stage manager). Stephanie Yankwitt is the Blatt Center producer.

Finn penned Romance in Hard Times in 1989 at the Public Theater as part of Joseph Papp's "musical laboratories," where it received two engagements. Korey returns to the role of Zoe in this workshop production, a role she played Off-Broadway at the Public.

A conversation with Finn and Sheinkin, moderated by artistic director Julianne Boyd, will be held Aug. 21 at 4 PM. Admission is free. A free post-show discussion with the cast will follow the Aug. 26 at 7:30 PM performance.

Barrington Stage Company is under the leadership of artistic director Boyd and managing director Tristan Wilson.

The Lee Blatt Performing Arts Center is located at 36 Linden Street in Pittsfield, MA. For more information and tickets, call (413) 236-8888 or visit BarringtonStageCo.org.