Full casting and creative team are announced today for the eagerly awaited professional European première of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Allegro, which opened on Broadway in 1947, and was their third collaboration for the stage following Oklahoma! and Carousel. Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Allegro, with music by Richard Rodgers, book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, will open for a six-week season in The Large at Southwark Playhouse from Friday 5 August and run until Saturday 10 September 2016. Press night is Thursday 11 August at 7.30pm.
It is produced by Danielle Tarento and directed by Thom Southerland, the award-winning team behind Grey Gardens, Grand Hotel, Titanic, Parade and Mack & Mabel. Southerland is working on a new adaptation of the book and the production will have brand new orchestrations.
In 1905 in a small Midwestern town, the wife of a local doctor gives birth to a baby boy, Joseph Taylor Jr. Allegro chronicles nearly four decades in the life of this average Joe – through his childhood, from college dorm to marriage altar, and on to his own medical career; from the tranquility of his hometown to the hectic din of big city life and a mid-life discovery of who he is and what his life is truly about, ultimately learning the most important lessons of all – the value of family, that money isn’t everything and that home really is where the heart is.
The cast are as follows. Katie Bernstein (Emily West) has just played Peggy in Mrs Henderson Presents. Her other West End roles include Little Becky Two Shoes in Urinetown. Emily Bull (Jennie Brinker) was in Sunset Boulevard and Sweeney Todd at the ENO and played Cosette in Les Misérables in the West End. David Delve (Ned Brinker) was most recently Colonel-Doctor Otternschlag in Grand Hotel at Southwark Playhouse. Julia J Nagle (Marjorie Taylor) appeared in the West End and on tour in Dirty Dancing and was Susan in Company at Southwark Playhouse. Dylan Turner (Charlie Townsend)’s West End shows include Beautiful – The Carole King Musical, Chariots of Fire and Rock Of Ages. Susan Travers (Grandma Taylor) has made countless stage and screen appearances over her long career, including the European première of Rodger’s and Hammerstein’s State Fair at Trafalgar Studios. Gary Tushaw (Joseph Taylor Jr) was in Sunset Boulevard and Sweeney Todd at the ENO. Steve Watts (Dr Taylor) appeared in Chariots Of Fire in the West End and The Mikado at Charing Cross Theatre. They are joined by Cassandra McCowan, Matthew McDonald, Louise Olley, Benjamin Purkiss, Jacqueline Tate, Samuel Thomas, Leah West and Matthew Woodyatt.
The full creative team are: Director Thom Southerland, Orchestrator Mark Cumberland, Musical Director Dean Austin, Choreographer Lee Proud, Set Designer Anthony Lamble, Costume Designer Jonathan Lipman, Lighting Designer Derek Anderson, Sound Designer Andrew Johnson, Producer & Casting Director Danielle Tarento.