Once Gets Two Extra Weeks at New York Theatre Workshop, Now to Jan. 15

News   Once Gets Two Extra Weeks at New York Theatre Workshop, Now to Jan. 15
Once, the Irish-pop and folk-infused musical inspired by the hit indie film, is such a hot seller at Off-Broadway's New York Theatre Workshop that the not-for-profit announced on its website a two-week extension, now to Jan. 15, 2012. NYTW is hosting the Manhattan premiere of the Broadway-aimed show, which, as previously reported, has commercial producers attached.

Steve Kazee and company in Once.
Steve Kazee and company in Once. Photo by Joan Marcus

Tickets are becoming hard to get. As of Dec. 5, tickets were still available in the extension weeks.

The musical with plaintive and rousing songs by Irish troubadour Glen Hansard and Czech musician Markéta Irglová — who appeared as mismatched would-be lovers in the picture and won the 2008 Academy Award for writing its hypnotic signature ballad, "Falling Slowly" — officially opens Off-Broadway on Dec. 6. Previews began Nov. 15. A run to Jan. 1 was previously announced.

On stage, Steve Kazee has Hansard's role of Guy and Cristin Milioti has Irglova's role of Girl. There has been considerable buzz about the show in recent weeks, not least of which is due to the actor-musician ensemble of the piece, set in a Dublin pub designed by Tony Award winner Bob Crowley (The Coast of Utopia).

Director John Tiffany and choreographer Steven Hoggett (collaborators of the acclaimed ensemble Iraq War drama Black Watch) stage the musical play, which has a libretto by Irish playwright Enda Walsh (The Walworth Farce, Misterman), drawing from the motion picture written and directed by John Carney.

The film's songs and other tunes are orchestrated and arranged by music supervisor Martin Lowe. In addition to Kazee (known for Broadway's To Be or Not To Be, 110 in the Shade) and Milioti (NYTW's Little Foxes and The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter, Broadway's Coram Boy), the cast of Once features David Abeles, Claire Candela, Will Connolly, Elizabeth A. Davis, David Patrick Kelly, Anne L. Nathan, Lucas Papaelias, Andy Taylor, Erikka Walsh, Paul Whitty and J. Michael Zygo.


Elizabeth A. Davis and Cristin Milioti in Once.
photo by Joan Marcus

Here's how NYTW characterizes the work: "On the streets of Dublin, an Irish musician (Guy) and a Czech immigrant (Girl) are drawn together by their shared love of music. Over the course of one fateful week, an unexpected friendship and collaboration quickly evolves into a powerful but complicated love story, underscored by the emotionally charged music that has made Once an international sensation."

The independent Irish film "Once" was made for $150,000; shot in 17 days; and grossed $20 million worldwide.

Hansard and Irglová won the Los Angeles Film Critics Award for Best Music, and the film's soundtrack was nominated for two Grammy Awards. "Falling Slowly" won the Oscar for Best Original Song.

Commercial producers attached to the show's future are John N. Hart, Patrick Milling Smith, Brian Carmody, Fred Zollo, Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson. The producers first announced a fall 2011 Broadway launch, but opted for a more modest kickoff at NYTW. A 2012 Broadway life is expected, but not officially announced as of Dec. 5.

Visit www.nytw.org. New York Theatre Workshop is at 79 E. 4th Street, between Bowery and Second Avenue in the East Village.

Steve Kazee and Cristin Milioti in <i>Once</i>.
Steve Kazee and Cristin Milioti in Once. Photo by Joan Marcus
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