Cathy Rigby, who recently concluded a two-and-one-half year national tour of Peter Pan, will return to La Mirada Theatre in the title role of The Unsinkable Molly Brown. The Meredith Willson musical opens March 31 for a three-week run. The show is directed by Glenn Casale, choreographed by Patti Colombo, and co-stars Christopher Carl.
La Mirada's production of Peter Pan was produced by Rigby and her company partner Tom McCoy. The production had two runs on Broadway and culminated in its taping by the A&E Network for broadcast later this year, followed by release on video and DVD. Rigby and McCoy won an Ovation Award and were nominated for a Tony Award for Best Musical Revival. Rigby also was also nominated by New York Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Actress in a Musical.
Molly Brown was Willson's followup to his hugely successful previous show, The Music Man. He based his new effort on the largely true story of Molly Tobin, who clawed her way out of a dirt-poor Missouri childhood, married a miner, Leadville Johnny Brown, and struck it rich, not just once but twice, only to be snubbed by the Denver bluebloods. To get even, she traveled to England and became a big hit with royalty, only to have the misfortune of booking return passage to the USA aboard the newly-launched Titanic. The headlines in Denver read "The Unsinkable Mrs. Brown Survives Titanic Disaster," at which point Molly Tobin Brown became Denver's darling.
Casale, who also directed Rigby in Peter Pan, will be backed up by musical director-conductor Dennis Castellano, who worked for McCoy Rigby Productions on Guys & Dolls and Annie Get Your Gun.
La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts is located at 14900 La Mirada Blvd. For tickets and information call (562) 944-9801 or (714) 994- 6310. -- By Willard Manus
Southern California Correspondent