Reviews of the Stratford Festival, from Ontario, Canada. And the occasional book.
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Tuesday, 18 April 2017
Stratford Festival kicks off 65th season with Guys and Dolls
Blythe Wilson (centre) as
Miss Adelaide with members of the company in Guys and Dolls. Photography by
Cylla von Tiedemann.
MEDIA RELEASE April
17, 2017… You
have never seen Guys and Dolls like this before! Following a long string
of hit musicals at the Festival, Canada’s top director-choreographer Donna
Feore thrills audiences once again with her stunning production of Guys
and Dolls, filled with original choreography showcased in some of the most spectacular production numbers ever mounted on a
Stratford stage. Rediscover this beloved musical, on stage now at the Festival
and Dolls is without question one of the finest pieces of musical theatre
ever created,” says Ms Feore. “Branded a classic almost the instant it
premièred, Guys and Dolls defies expectations. The very fact that
crapshooters have a ballet lets us know that traditional ideas will be turned
on their heads. The ‘dolls’ of the title are independent, employed and
empowered. Guys and Dolls offers us a remarkably balanced view of the
romantic transactions of this fabled Broadway bunch and it does it with great
joy and precision. There is nothing extra or out of place. Every word, every
note, every step earns its keep.”
and Dolls is known as the perfect musical comedy and there is no more
perfect director to bring it to life than Donna Feore,” says Artistic Director Antoni
Cimolino. “It’s a show with special meaning to her – and to us – because
it’s the show that launched her Stratford career as a dancer in our 1990
production. Since then, she has become a true master of our Festival stage,
exciting audiences with hit after hit, and this production is no exception. She
and her extraordinary group of artists are about to blow the roof off the
cast boasts 33 of the country’s most gifted performers, led by Sean Arbuckle
as Nathan Detroit, Evan Buliung as Sky Masterson, Alexis Gordon
as Sarah Brown and Blythe Wilson as Miss Adelaide, with Lisa Horner
as General Matilda B. Cartwright, Laurie Murdoch as Arvide Abernathy and
Steve Ross as Nicely-Nicely Johnson.
production features, for the first time in 25 years, Michael Starobin’s
vibrant orchestrations and Mark Hummel’s slick dance arrangements,
originally created for the 1992 Broadway production. The glorious score,
including “Luck Be a Lady,” “A Bushel and a Peck” and the rousing “Sit Down,
You’re Rockin’ the Boat,” is brought to life by Music Director Laura Burton
and a live 19-piece orchestra.
creative team also includes Set Designer Michael Gianfrancesco, Costume
Designer Dana Osborne, Lighting Designer Michael Walton, Sound
Designer Peter McBoyle and Fight Director John Stead.
Guys and Dolls officially opens
on Tuesday, May 30, and runs until October 29.
is a musical fable of Broadway, based on a story and characters of Damon
Runyon, with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser, and book by Jo Swerling and Abe
support is generously provided by Mary Ann & Robert Gorlin, by Riki
Turofsky & Charles Petersen and by Catherine & David Wilkes.
is co-sponsored by RBC and Union Gas.
for the 2017 season of the Festival Theatre is generously provided by Daniel
Bernstein & Claire Foerster.
Guys and Dolls Forum highlights
Forum is a series of events, such as exclusive showcases, guest speakers,
special meals, music and family fun, that offer theatregoers a unique
opportunity to delve deeper into the ideas and issues raised by the 2017
playbill. Themes related to Guys and Dolls will be explored through
several Forum events, including:
Robert Cushman investigates the life, world and works of Damon
Runyon, the great short-story writer and reporter whose gangster characters and
their fantastic lingo inspired the fabulous world of Guys and Dolls.
Featuring extracts from the stories, including one of the funniest and most
touching of them all, “The Lily of St. Pierre.”