Ahmanson Theatre Sets 2015-16 Musical Slate
The Los Angeles venue's season opens with a new production of 'The Sound of Music' and continues with Tony winners 'The Bridges of Madison County' and 'A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder.'
Center Theatre Group has lined up four Tony Award-winning musicals for its 2015-16 season at Los Angeles' Ahmanson Theatre.
Kicking off the company's 49th season is a major revival of the Rodgers & Hammerstein classic The Sound of Music, directed by three-time Tony winner Jack O'Brien. Riding in on the renewed popularity of the musical following its 2013 live presentation on NBC and the movie's 50th anniversary tribute at the Oscars, the beloved show about the von Trapp family will run Sept. 20 through Oct. 31, kicking off a national tour.
Next on the roster, from Dec. 8 through Jan. 17, is The Bridges of Madison County, adapted by playwright Marsha Norman and composer-lyricist Jason Robert Brown from Robert James Waller's romantic best-seller. Bartlett Sher directs the show, which was a commercial disappointment on Broadway but won Tonys for Brown's soaring score and orchestrations.
Brown (The Last Five Years) has signed on as conductor for the entire Los Angeles run, which is the second stop on the show's national tour, kicking off in Des Moines, Iowa, in November and continuing to more than 15 cities.
The season continues with the 2014 Tony winner for best musical, A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder, adapted from the same source novel as the classic Alec Guinness screen comedy ind Hearts and Coronets. The show is directed by Darko Tresnjak and features a book by Robert L. Freedman, both of whom won Tonys for their work, with an original score by Steven Lutvak. Freedman and Lutvak co-wrote the lyrics.
A farcical story of a disinherited heir to an aristocratic fortune who plots to bump off every relative standing in the way of him acquiring a title, the show has been running since October 2013 on Broadway, grossing $49 million. The 44-week national tour starts Sept. 29 in Chicago, with the L.A. run scheduled for March 22, 2016-May 1, 2016.
The Ahmanson will wrap up its season with an imported London revival of Titanic: The Musical, playing May 14, 2016, through June 26, 2016. Directed by Thom Southerland, the 1997 show about the tragic sinking of "the ship of dreams" has music and lyrics by Maury Yeston (Nine) and a book by Peter Stone (1776). The original production won five Tonys, including best musical, book and score.
"The season is a true celebration of the musical theater art form we all love," said CTG artistic director Michael Ritchie. "It's a season of lush musical scores, reimagined classics, daring new comedies and gripping theatrical experiences."
Casting for all four shows, along with a fifth production to complete the season, will be announced at a future date.