The original production of Cole Porter’s Kiss Me, Kate opened at the New Century Theatre December 30, 1948. Starring Alfred Drake and Patricia Morison, the production would go on to play 1,077 performances—and win the first Best Musical Tony Award—before closing on July 28, 1951.
With a book by Bella and Sam Spewack, Kiss Me, Kate tells the story of two divorced and flamboyantly egocentric performers, who find themselves starring opposite each other in a musical version of Taming of the Shrew.
Look Back at More Than 70 Years of Kiss Me, Kate on Broadway
The musical would return to Broadway in 1999 in a Michael Blakemore-helmed production featuring choreography by Kathleen Marshall. The revival, starring Marin Mazzie and Brian Stokes Mitchell, garnered 12 Tony nominations, winning five, including Best Actor in a Musical for Mitchell and Best Revival of a Musical.
Following a sold-out benefit concert reading, Kiss Me, Kate returned to Broadway at Studio 54, playing a limited engagement from February 14 through June 30, 2019. The Roundabout Theatre Company revival, directed by Scott Ellis with choreography by Warren Carlyle, starred Kelli O’Hara and Will Chase as Lilli Vanessi and Fred Graham. The revival earned four Tony nominations including Best Revival of a Musical and Best Actress in a Musical for O’Hara’s performance.