Will the Kander and Ebb's Revue First You Dream Take Wing?

PlayBlog   Will the Kander and Ebb's Revue First You Dream Take Wing?
Producers have been circling First You Dream, the revue of songs by composer John Kander and lyricist Fred Ebb ever since it premiered in late summer 2009 at Signature Theatre in Arlington, VA.

Bloomberg.com recently cited Broadway producer Jeffrey Richards (Enron, Race, August: Osage County) saying he saw the show and is "very interested in it." Richards didn't respond to Playbill.com inquiries. So, what's the future? Signature's managing director Maggie Boland is being circumspect.

"We hope for a future life for First You Dream: The Music of Kander & Ebb," she wrote in an email to Playbill.com. "Conversations are happening and we hope to have news, but there is nothing to be confirmed."

Broadway's Norm Lewis, Julia Murney, James Clow, Heidi Blickenstaff and more were featured in Signature's First You Dream: The Kander & Ebb Concert Sept. 10-27, 2009. The concert at the 2009 Tony Award-winning regional theatre boasted 40 K&E songs and new orchestrations by Tony Award winner William David Brohn (Wicked, Miss Saigon, Ragtime).

The show's title is drawn from the title song of the K&E musical Steel Pier. The "world premiere theatre event" offered music from 15 of Kander and Ebb's musicals and movies, starting from their 1965 musical Flora, the Red Menace through hits like Cabaret and Chicago to their more recent shows, Curtains and The Visit.

The cast, directed by Signature artistic director Eric Schaeffer (Broadway's Million Dollar Quartet), included Blickenstaff (The Little Mermaid, [title of show] and DC's Meet John Doe), Clow (Assassins, Company), Lewis (The Little Mermaid, Les Misérables, and the title role in Signature's Sweeney Todd), Murney (Wicked, The Wild Party), Matthew Scott (Jersey Boys, A Catered Affair and the title role in Signature's Ace) and Signature favorite Eleasha Gamble (Into the Woods, Urinetown, and the Sondheim Award Gala).

David Loud (Curtains, Steel Pier, And the World Goes 'Round) provided musical supervision and vocal arrangements. Signature's resident musical director Jon Kalbfleisch conducted a 20-piece orchestra, with lighting design by Mark Lanks, costume coordination by Kathleen Geldard and choreography by Karma Camp.

The songlist of First You Dream included "Sara Lee," "Not Every Day of the Week" (from Flora the Red Menace),
"She's a Woman"/"Dressing Them Up" (from Kiss of the Spider Woman), "Blue Crystal"/"Marry Me" (from The Rink), "Sing Happy" (from Flora the Red Menace), "City Lights" (from The Act), "All I Need (Is One Good Break)"/"Say Yes" (from Flora the Red Menace & Zorba), "Colored Lights" (from The Rink),
"A Certain Girl" (from The Happy Time), "The Apple Doesn't Fall Very Far" (from The Rink), "I Don't Remember You"/"Sometimes a Day Goes By" (from The Happy Time & Woman of the Year), "Military Man" (from Over & Over), "The Money Tree" (from The Act), "Maybe This Time" (from Cabaret), "How Lucky Can You Get? (from Funny Lady), "Dear One" (from Kiss of the Spider Woman), "Theme from 'New York, New York,'" "Show People"/"Broadway My Street" (from Curtains & 70 Girls 70) and more.

Ebb died in 2004. Kander has continued work on their in-progress new musicals, including the Broadway-aimed The Scottsboro Boys, which premiered at Off-Broadway's Vineyard Theatre. It closed April 18.

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