KUSHNER’S AWARD-WINNING MUSICAL GETS FIRST NYC REVIVAL AT THE GALLERY PLAYERS
(NEW YORK, NY) – The Gallery Players, three-time recipient of the New York Innovative Theatre Award for Outstanding Production of a Musical, proudly kicks off 2010 with the award-winning modern classic Caroline, or Change. Playwright Tony Kushner (Angels in America) and composer Jeanine Tesori’s (Thoroughly Modern Millie) elegantly crafted and uniquely poignant theatrical work receives its first New York City revival January 30-February 21, 2010.
Set in 1963 in sleepy Lake Charles, Louisiana, Caroline, or Change centers its action on the Gellman family and their African-American maid. Caroline is drifting through her life, nearly paralyzed by her circumstances – a single mother of four working in a service job to a white family. The thunder of the civil rights movement and John F. Kennedy’s death is distant, yet reverberates deeply through the script, provoking all characters to see their lives in a new light and either embrace or reject the larger social changes that are in motion. Caroline herself ultimately must choose between continuing on as her “implacable” and proud self and her family’s welfare. Does she, or doesn’t she? Caroline, or Change’s rich, soulful score has influences from American spirituals and blues as well as Jewish Klezmer and folk.
Several Caroline, or Change cast members return to their roles at The Gallery Players after being featured in them regionally: Eileen Tepper* as Rose Stopnick Gellman (TheatreWorks Palo Alto), Elyse McKay Taylor* as Emmie Thibodeaux (Arden Theatre Co./Philadelphia), Frank Viveros* as Bus/Dryer (Zachary Scott Theater/Austin) and Nikki Stephenson* as Radio (Speakeasy Stage; also: Black Nativity, Classical Theater of Harlem; National Tours: Hairspray, Fame – The Musical).
The Caroline, or Change cast is rounded out by actors who frequent the boards from Broadway to Regional Theatre: Gisela Adisa* (Futurology, National Black Theater of Harlem), River Aguirre, Teisha Duncan, Heather Davis (Showboat, North Shore Music Theatre), Markeisha Ensley* (AUDELCO nomination for Best Ensemble, Jamaica, Paul Robeson Theater; Church, Public Theater), Peter Gantenbein* (Broadway: Les Miserables; National Tours: West Side Story, Les Miserables), Marcie Henderson* (The Who’s Tommy, The Gallery Players, The People vs. Mona), Daniel Henri Luttway, Gael Schaefer* (Emma, NYMF), Ellisha Marie Thomas, Barrington Walters, Bill Weeden* and John Weigand* (Emma, NYMF Tours: The Sound of Music – Asia Tour & Fiddler on the Roof – National Tour). *appearing courtesy of Actor’s Equity Association.
Caroline, or Change is produced by Lanie Zipoy (Producer, Mac Rogers’ Universal Robots: 4 2009 New York Innovative Theatre Award nominations; Best Off-Off Broadway play of 2009, Independent Theater Bloggers Association) for The Gallery Players, and is directed by Jeremy Gold Kronenberg. The Musical Director is Nehemiah Luckett, the Assistant Director is Allison Bressi. Choreography is by Micheal Rice, Set Design is by Edward T. Morris, Costume Design is by Soule Golden (Joffrey Ballet), Lighting Design is by Mike Billings and Sound Design is by Jillian Walker.
Caroline, or Change returns to New York City with a limited engagement starting Saturday, January 30 2010 and runs Thursdays, Fridays at 8pm, Saturdays at 2pm & 8pm and Sundays at 3pm through February 21, 2010.
Tickets to Caroline, or Change are $18 for adults, $14 for Seniors & Children 12 and under, and can be purchased by calling TheaterMania at (212) 352-3101, or online at www.galleryplayers.com. The Gallery Players is located at 199 14th St., between 4th and 5th Avenues in Park Slope, Brooklyn. Take the F Train to 4th Ave. or the R Train to 9th Street. By car: BQE to Hamilton Avenue to 14th Street.
Caroline, or Change was originally directed on Broadway by George C. Wolfe. It was originally produced on Broadway by Carole Shorenstein Hays, HBO Films, Jujamcyn Theaters, Freddy DeMann, Scott Rudin, Hendel/Morten/Wiesenfeld, Fox Theatricals/Manocherian/Bergere, Roger Berlind, Clear Channel Entertainment, Joan Cullman, Greg Holland/Scott Nederlander, Margo Lion, Daryl Roth, Zollo/Sine in association with the Public Theater. Originally Developed and Produced in October 2003 by the Public Theater; George C. Wolfe, Producer; Mara Manus, Executive Producer. Caroline, or Change is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI. 421 West 54th Street, New York, NY 10019. Phone: 212-541-4684 Fax: 212-397-4684 www.MTIShows.com
A New York institution since 1967, The Gallery Players has served actors and audiences alike for more than 4 decades by showcasing burgeoning new talent and offering a home base for theater professionals. Its eclectic programming of intimate revivals and ambitious new work in inventive productions has earned it the reputation of “New York’s Best Kept Secret.” The Gallery Players is the recipient of the Off-Off Broadway Review’s 2000 Award for Lifetime Achievement and is the three-time recipient of New York Innovative Theatre Award for Outstanding Production of a Musical in 2007, 2008 and 2009 for their productions of Urinetown! The musical, Yank! A New Musical and Like You Like It. Among its famous alumni are founding member Harvey Fierstein; Broadway regulars Nancy Anderson, Jeffry Denman and Diedre Goodwin; New York theater personality Seth Rudetsky and many others.
The Gallery Players’ 43rd season continues with Arthur Miller’s The Crucible March 20-April 4th 2010, City of Angels May 1-23, 2010, and closes with The 13th Annual Black Box New Play Festival, June 10-27, 2010. A 3-Play mini-subscription is available for the remaining main stage productions in The Gallery Players’ 43rd season, including Caroline, or Change. For more information, visit www.galleryplayers.com.