Sills, Jbara and Anderson Part of 5,000 Fingers Musical Reading

News   Sills, Jbara and Anderson Part of 5,000 Fingers Musical Reading
A reading of the Broadway-bound musical The 5,000 Fingers of Doctor T. is being held in Manhattan March 26.
Top: Douglas Sills, Bottom: Gregory Jbara
Top: Douglas Sills, Bottom: Gregory Jbara

An adaptation of the 1953 movie of the same name, the musical features a score by Glen Roven and a book by Karen Hartman. Susan Schulman — of The Secret Garden fame — is directing. The reading will feature the talents of Douglas Sills, Gregory Jbara and Nancy Anderson with Nicolas King as the young Bart Collins. Also taking part are Jennifer Gambatese, Amy McAlexander, Joy Lunn Matthews, Blake Ewing Erick Devine and Eric Michael Gillett. The musical is being produced by Producers 4, Ben Mordecai, Brian Brolly, Michael Jenkins and Robert Bartner. That producing group is also shepherding Brooklyn to Broadway next fall.

The 1953 film, which is a cult musical fantasy classic firmly rooted in the Cold War era, was written by Theodor ("Dr. Seuss") Geisel. "5,000 Fingers of Dr. T" tells of a young boy who grudgingly takes piano lessons from Dr. Terwilliker. The youth fantasizes that the evil Dr. T enlists 500 children to play the concerto he's written on the world's biggest piano. Dr. T enrolls them in a huge music institute, and a boy (Bart) tries to defeat his evil plan. In a subplot, the boy's mom is a single parent, and Dr. T. tries to romance her. But it's the friendly plumber from next door who's the hero who ends up with the mother and the boy.

Word of a musical adaptation of the film, "The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T," first surfaced in 2000, at the time with actor-author Simon Callow directing and Quinny Sacks, a West End and international ballet veteran, choreographing. Jim Dale was also attached to the project at one point.

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