Frozen star Jelani Alladin will play Hercules in the upcoming musical adaptation of the Disney animated film at the Public Theater’s Delacorte Theater in Central Park this summer. Joining him in the Public Works presentation will be Spring Awakening's Krysta Rodriguez as Meg, Roger Bart (who voiced the title role in the film) as Hades, Aladdin's James Monroe Iglehart as Phil, and Tamika Lawrence (Come from Away) as the lead muse, Calliope.
Directed by Lear deBessonet with choreography by Chase Brock, Hercules will play a free run August 31–September 8. As with previous Public Works shows, performances will feature professional actors with over 200 New Yorkers from all five boroughs.
The cast will also feature Jeff Hiller as Panic, Ramona Keller as Thalia, and Rema Webb as Terpsichore; along with a special featured performance by 2019 Tony Honor Award recipient Broadway Inspirational Voices.
As previously reported, the musical will include Alan Menken and David Zippel’s songs from the 1997 animated film, along with new material and an adapted book by Pulitzer Prize finalist Kristoffer Diaz.
The Public's Hercules is based on the Disney film written by Ron Clements, John Musker, Donald McEnery, Bob Shaw, and Irene Mecchi and directed by Clements.
“Many generations of our Public Works families have embraced Disney musicals as a shared American canon,” said Public Works founder and Hercules director Lear deBessonet. “Hercules’ roots in Greek mythology, infused with soulful gospel music, make it a natural extension of Public Works’ radical exploration of humanity through Shakespeare and the classics. We’re excited to see how this Public Works production will uncover the deeper meaning of what it means to be a hero and how true strength is derived, not from the greatness of one person, but the transformative power of community.”
The Public Works community partner organizations are Brownsville Recreation Center (Brooklyn), Center for Family Life in Sunset Park (Brooklyn), DreamYard (Bronx), The Fortune Society (Queens), and Military Resilience Foundation (all boroughs), along with alumni partners Casita Maria Center for Arts and Education (Bronx), Children's Aid (all boroughs), and Domestic Workers United (all boroughs).
Hercules will feature scenic design by Dane Laffrey; costume design by Andrea Hood; lighting design by Tyler Micoleau; sound design by Kai Harada and Jessica Paz; wigs, hair, and makeup design by Cookie Jordan; puppet design by James Ortiz; music supervision and arrangements by Michael Kosarin; orchestrations by Danny Troob and Joseph Joubert; dance arrangements by Mark Hummel; and synthesizer programming by Randy Cohen.
The production is presented by special arrangement with Disney Theatrical Productions, under the direction of Thomas Schumacher.