(WASHINGTON, D.C.)The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts today announced partial casting for its world premiere musical production of Little Dancer. Four-time Tony Award® winner Boyd Gaines will play Edgar Degas, three-time Tony Award® nominee Rebecca Luker will play Adult Marie von Goethem, and New York City Ballet principal dancer Tiler Peck will play Young Marie von Goethem.
The musical features book and lyrics by Tony Award® winner Lynn Ahrens, music by Tony Award® winner Stephen Flaherty, and direction and choreography by five-time Tony Award® winner Susan Stroman. Performances of Little Dancer will take place in the Kennedy Center Eisenhower Theater in October 2014. Additional casting and details will be announced at a later date.
Part fact, part fiction, and set in the harsh backstage world of the Paris Opera Ballet, Little Dancer is inspired by the young ballerina who posed for Edgar Degas and became, inadvertently, the most famous dancer in the world. Torn by her family’s poverty, her debt to the artist and the lure of wealthy men, Marie struggles to keep her place in the ballet corpsa girl on the verge of womanhood, caught between the conflicting demands of life and art.
The creative team includes set design by Beowulf Boritt, costume design by William Ivey Long, lighting design by Ken Billington, sound design by Kai Harada, with music supervision by David Loud and conducted by James Moore.
During the current 2013-2014 season, the Kennedy Center will produce a major revival production of Side Show in association with La Jolla Playhouse from June 14 to July 15, 2014. With direction by Academy Award® winner Bill Condon, the musical features book and lyrics by Bill Russell and music by Henry Krieger who are making revisions to the show before its debut in La Jolla this fall.
Tiler Peck (Young Marie von Goethem) is a Principal Dancer for New York City Ballet. She was last seen at the Kennedy Center performing at the 2012 Kennedy Center Honors in a tribute for honoree Natalia Makarova, which aired on CBS. Ms. Peck appeared as Clara in the Radio City Christmas Spectacular and as Gracie Shinn in Meredith Willson’s The Music Man on Broadway. This past April, she played the featured role of Louise Bigelow in the New York Philharmonic’s Live From Lincoln Center production of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel. She has been featured twice as a guest performer on Dancing with the Stars. Ms. Peck’s film credits include appearances in A Time for Dancing, Geppetto, Donnie Darko, Catfish documentary, Black Swan, Jerome Robbins’ NY Export: Opus Jazz, and Live From Lincoln Center’s production of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker.
Boyd Gaines (Edgar Degas) most recently co-starred in the Australian production of Driving Miss Daisy, opposite Angela Lansbury and James Earl Jones. He was previously seen on Broadway in the Manhattan Theatre Club’s production of An Enemy of the People and The Columnist, with John Lithgow. He performed opposite James Earl Jones and Vanessa Redgrave in the Broadway and West End productions of Driving Miss Daisy. Additional credits include The Grand Manner (Drama Desk nomination); and on Broadway with Patti LuPone in Gypsy, for which he received his fourth Tony Award®, a Drama Desk Award, and an Outer Critics Circle Award nomination. Broadway: Pygmalion, Gypsy (City Center’s Encores!), Journey’s End (Tony® nomination, Drama Desk Award, Outer Critics Circle Award), Twelve Angry Men, Contact (Tony Award®, Lucille Lortel Awards), Cabaret, The Show Off, She Loves Me (Tony Award®, Drama Desk Award, Outer Critics Circle Award), Company, and The Heidi Chronicles (Tony Award®).
Rebecca Luker (Adult Marie von Goethem) was last seen on stage in NYC in the world premiere of Maury Yeston’s Death Takes a Holiday, for which she received an Outer Critics Circle nomination. On Broadway she has appeared in Mary Poppins (Tony® nomination), Nine, The Music Man (Tony® nomination), The Sound of Music, Show Boat (Tony® nomination), The Secret Garden and The Phantom of the Opera. This fall, Luker will step into the role of the Fairy Godmother in Broadway’s Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella for a limited engagement. She performed in Passion during the Kennedy Center’s 2002 Sondheim Celebration. She was last seen performing at the Kennedy Center during the 2011 Kennedy Center Honors in a tribute for honoree Barbara Cook.
Lynn Ahrens (Book & Lyrics) won Broadway’s Tony®, Outer Critics Circle and Drama Desk Awards for Ragtime and received two Academy Award® nominations for Anastasia. Other musicals include Once On This Island, Seussical, My Favorite Year, MSG’s A Christmas Carol, Lucky Stiff, Dessa Rose, A Man of No Importance, The Glorious Ones and most recently, Rocky. Film/TV: Camp, Schoolhouse Rock, many others. Additional honors include Emmy and Olivier Awards, and multiple nominations for the Tony®, Golden Globe, Emmy and Grammy®. Longtime collaborator, Stephen Flaherty. ahrensandflaherty.com
Stephen Flaherty (Composer) composed the musicals Ragtime, Seussical, Once on This Island, My Favorite Year, A Man of No Importance, The Glorious Ones, Dessa Rose, Lucky Stiff, Loving Repeating and others. Films include Anastasia and others. His latest musical, Rocky, written with longtime collaborator Lynn Ahrens and Thomas Meehan, recently premiered in Hamburg. Awards include the Tony®, Olivier, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, and multiple nominations for the Academy Award®, Golden Globe, and Grammy®. ahrensandflaherty.com.
Susan Stroman (Director & Choreographer). Broadway: Big Fish, The Scottsboro Boys, The Producers, Contact, Crazy for You, Show Boat, Oklahoma!, Young Frankenstein, The Frogs, The Music Man, Thou Shalt Not, Steel Pier. Off-Broadway: Flora the Red Menace; And the World Goes 'Round; MSG's A Christmas Carol. Ballet: Double Feature (NYCB) and For the Love of Duke (NYCB), But Not For Me (Martha Graham), Take Five...More or Less (PNB). Film: Center Stage, The Producers: The Movie Musical. A five-time Tony Award®-winner, her work has been honored with Olivier, Drama Desk, Outer Critics, Lucille Lortel, a record five Astaire Awards and the George Abbott Award for Lifetime Achievement in the American Theater.
ABOUT THEATER AT THE KENNEDY CENTER
Now in its 43rd season, the Center’s achievements as a commissioner, producer, and nurturer of developing artists have resulted in more than 200 theatrical productions, dozens of new ballets, operas, and musical works. The Center has co-produced the original productions of Annie, the American premiere of Les Misérables, and Titanic. In the past 12 years, the Center has produced the Sondheim Celebration (six Stephen Sondheim musicals produced in 2002), Tennessee Williams Explored (three of Williams’ classic plays), August Wilson’s 20th Century (Wilson’s complete ten play cycle produced as staged and costumed readings), major revival productions of Mame and Carnival!, and Terrence McNally’s Nights at the Opera featuring three works by the playwright performed concurrently on three Kennedy Center stages. The Kennedy Center production of Ragtime transferred to Broadway in 2009 and received six Tony® nominations. The major revival production of Follies transferred to Broadway in 2011, which was followed by a successful run at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles. The production was nominated for eight Tony Awards® and received one award. Each year, the Kennedy Center hosts the Page-to-Stage new play festival, featuring staged readings by more than 40 theaters from the D.C. metropolitan area, all with a mission to produce and support new work.
Musical Theater at the Kennedy Center is made possible through the generosity of the Adrienne Arsht Musical Theater Fund.
The Kennedy Center Theater Season is sponsored by Altria Group.
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