The Confession of Lily Dare Opens Off-Broadway

Off-Broadway News   The Confession of Lily Dare Opens Off-Broadway
Charles Busch’s comic melodrama, a celebration of 1930s pre-code cinema, opens at the Cherry Lane in a production from Primary Stages.
The Confession of Lily Dare_Primary Stages_Off Broadway_2020_Production Photos_X_HR
Kendal Sparks and Nancy Anderson Carol Rosegg

Primary Stages celebrates the Off-Broadway opening of Charles Busch’s The Confession of Lily Dare at the Cherry Lane Theater January 29. Starring Busch and directed by Carl Andress, the new play is a comic melodrama that celebrates the gauzy “confession film” tearjerkers of early 1930s pre-code cinema (think: The Sin of Madelon Claudet, Frisco Jenny, and Madame X).

The Confession of Lily Dare, which began January 11, follows a woman’s tumultuous passage from convent girl to glittering cabaret chanteuse to infamous madame of a string of brothels—all while hiding her undying devotion to the child she was forced to abandon.

Joining playwright and performer Busch is a company made up of Nancy Anderson, Christopher Borg, Howard McGillin, Kendal Sparks, and Jennifer Van Dyck.

The production features set design by B.T. Whitehill, costume design by Rachel Townsend, lighting design by Kirk Bookman, sound design by Bart Fasbender, wig design by Katherine Carr, and original song and arrangements by Tom Judson. Busch’s costumes are designed by Jessica Jahn.

The Confession of Lily Dare is produced in association with Jamie deRoy and Ted Snowdon.

Busch and McGillin have been special guest performers on Playbill Travel’s Broadway on the High Seas cruises. Learn more about Broadway in the Great Northwest, Playbill Travel’s first domestic cruise featuring Kate Baldwin, Tedd Firth, Aaron Lazar, Beth Leavel, and Faith Prince (April 26–May 4, 2020), and Broadway on the Mediterranean (August 31–September 7, 2020), featuring Audra McDonald, Will Swenson, Gavin Creel, Caissie Levy, and Lindsay Mendez, as well as Broadway on the Nile (December 27, 2020–January 7, 2021) and Broadway on the Caribbean (February 15–22, 2021), with performers soon to be announced. To book a suite or stateroom, call Playbill Travel at 866-455-6789 or visit

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