New Polly Pen Musical, Miller's Resurrection and Guirgis' 'A' Train on Philly Wilma Season

News   New Polly Pen Musical, Miller's Resurrection and Guirgis' 'A' Train on Philly Wilma Season
The Wilma Theater in Philadelphia has solidified its 2003-04 season, and in addition to the previously-reported world premiere of Polly Pen and Laurence Klavan's musical, Embarrassments, the company has the East Coast premiere of Arthur Miller's Resurrection Blues on tap.

Marking 25 years of Blanka Zizka and Jiri Zizka's involvement with the resident company, the new season includes Miller's South American-set Resurrection Blues, Sept. 17-Oct. 26; the new Wilma commissioned musical, Embarrassments, by the composer of The Night Governess and bed and sofa, Nov. 26-Jan. 4, 2004; Charles L. Mee's Wintertime (directed by Jiri Zizka) March 10-April 18, 2004; followed by Stephen Adly Guirgis' Jesus Hopped the 'A' Train (directed by Blanka Zizka), May 19-June 27, 2004. Sept. 17-Oct. 26. DanceBoom! returns for a third season Jan. 21-Feb. 8. 2004.

In order to meet demand for subscribers, a sixth week has been added for mainstage shows in 2003-04.


Embarrassments has book and lyrics by Laurence Klavan and music and lyrics by Pen. The new work is set in 1895 and focuses on writer and lover Henry James.

According to the Wilma's website,, "The creators of the delightful Wilma smash hit Bed and Sofa take a spirited musical look into the mind of a Victorian genius. The date: January 5, 1895. The place: the St. James Theater in London's West End. Tonight, the brilliant novelist Henry James hopes to change his life with the opening of his new venture: a play, into which he has poured his vulnerable heart. Meanwhile, deep in his imagination, a parallel story unfolds: the revealing tale of a playwright struggling with conflicted loyalties to art, love and life. With comic invention, haunting music and increasing speed, these two stories, one real and one imaginary, drive toward their very different confrontations with destiny. The Wilma proudly presents an artistic landmark: this will be the first of our commissioned works to premiere on the Wilma stage." Pen penned The Night Governess, inspired by a story by Louisa May Alcott, seen at the McCarter Theatre in New Jersey. Other works include Goblin Market and Christina Alberta's Father.

For Wilma information, call (215) 546-7824.


The Wilma has named Lynn Landis the company's new managing director, replacing Naomi Grabel, who left the theatre in November 2002. Landis was recently senior vice president and executive producer for the theatrical division of Clear Channel Entertainment, where she developed and scouted new work.

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