-FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE-
BUCKS COUNTY PLAYHOUSE ANNOUNCES FIRST
PRODUCTIONS FOR 2016
World Premiere of New Musical, “A Taste of Things to Come,”
To Debut in January 2016
Two Popular Shows Scheduled for Revival In Summer Season
NEW HOPE, PA (11/30/2015) – The world premiere of a New York–bound musical, a revival of a favorite American comedy and a bio-musical of one of rock n’ roll’s most influential artists are the first productions announced for Bucks County Playhouse’s 2016 theater season.
Bucks County Playhouse Executive Producer Robyn Goodman and Producing Director Alexander Fraser revealed the new musical, “A Taste of Things to Come: Undressing Betty Crocker One Song at a Time,” Robert Harling’s “Steel Magnolias,” directed by Oscar nominee Marsha Mason, and “Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story” as the first productions to grace the Playhouse stage in the new year. Additional titles for 2016 will be announced shortly.
"We are very proud to launch 2016 with two great shows about female friendships: the funny new musical, ‘A Taste of Things to Come,’ where we visit a women's cooking club in the ‘50s and ‘60s when Betty Crocker, Dr. Spock and Alfred Kinsey are the heroes of the day; and the hilarious and moving classic ‘Steel Magnolias’,” says Goodman.
“Buddy Holly’s remarkably brief career produced some of rock and roll’s most influential hits,” says Fraser. “We look forward to rocking out the Playhouse with our new production of ‘Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story,’ directed by Hunter Foster and choreographed by Lorin Latarro, the team behind our acclaimed productions of ‘Company’ and ‘Ain’t Misbehavin’.”
With book, music and lyrics by Debra Barsha and Hollye Levin, “A Taste of Things To Come” will kick off the theatre season in a world premiere production that will begin previews January 30 and run through February 21. Barsha, the associate conductor of Broadway’s “Jersey Boys,” is a Jonathan Larson Performing Arts Foundation Award Winner for her score to the Keith Haring musical, “Radiant Baby.” Levin, a composer/lyricist with two gold records (“By Heart” with Jim Brickman and “Here in My Heart” with Jason Derlatka) is also well known for her book, music and lyrics for the stand-up comedy musical “Funny Business” which was work-shopped at the Kennedy Center and Mark Taper Forum and presented in a world-premiere production at Los Angeles’ Coronet Theater. Lorin Latarro, Bucks County Playhouse Artistic Associate, will make her directorial debut as Director and Choreographer for the production. Casting will be announced soon.
“A Taste of Things To Come” takes place in the 1950s when the world is quickly changing. Smack dab in the middle of America, in Winnetka, Illinois, four women enter a Betty Crocker cooking contest in the hopes of changing their lives. Little do these women know that it will take a zoologist from Indiana University, Alfred C. Kinsey, to really get them cooking! In an age when the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, they discover that the way to a woman’s heart is through her best friends. Bucks County Playhouse’s subscription season will begin with “Steel Magnolias” with Mason directing. The show is scheduled to open May 27 and run through June 18, 2016.
“I love Bob Harling’s funny and moving story about the remarkable power of friendship. And how exciting to do the play again with my great friend Robyn, who produced the Broadway ‘Steel Magnolias’ that I appeared in,” says Mason. “I can’t wait to get back to Bucks County Playhouse!” “Steel Magnolias” focuses on activities at Truvy’s Beauty Salon in the small town of Chinquapin, Louisiana, where the hair is big and the tales are even taller. Through their daily exchanges of outrageous village gossip and the chatter of family crises, six distinctly different women forge a unique bond of friendship and sisterhood. Alternately hilarious and touching, “Steel Magnolias” and its starry film adaptation have enchanted audiences for decades — celebrating the pricelessness of enduring friendships.
The summer season will continue with “Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story” in a new production directed by Hunter Foster and choreographed by Lorin Latarro. With a book by Alan James, “Buddy …” follows the true story of rock ‘n roll icon Buddy Holly. From his meteoric rise to fame in 1957 through his tragic death less than two years later on “The Day the Music Died,” Holly influenced modern music like no other performer of his generation. Featuring more than 20 of Buddy Holly’s greatest hits, including “That’ll Be the Day”, “Peggy Sue”, “Everyday”, “Oh Boy”, “Not Fade Away”, “Rave On” and “Raining in My Heart”, plus Ritchie Valens’ “La Bamba” and the Big Bopper’s “Chantilly Lace”, “Buddy” is a musical guaranteed to have audiences dancing in the aisles. The show is scheduled to open at the Playhouse on June 24 for a run through July 16, 2016.
Single tickets to “A Taste of Things to Come” are on sale now. Tickets to other productions in the Bucks County Playhouse 2016 Summer Season are currently available only as part of a season subscription package or to groups of 10 or more. The start date for single ticket sales will be announced shortly. For full details, and to purchase tickets, please visit buckscountyplayhouse.org or call 215-862-2121.
ABOUT BUCKS COUNTY PLAYHOUSE
Bucks County Playhouse, a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization, is the oldest and largest professional Equity performing arts center in Bucks County, and provides the finest theatrical entertainment for visitors and residents of New Hope, Doylestown, Lambertville and the Delaware Valley. Under the direction of Tony Award-winning producers Alexander Fraser and Robyn Goodman, its mission is to present first class professional entertainment and regain the Playhouse’s historic place in the national theatrical landscape; and to stimulate, support, inspire and celebrate the performing arts via community programs, partnerships and arts education.
Located between Philadelphia and New York, Bucks County Playhouse opened in 1939 in a converted 1790 gristmill after a group of community activists, led by Broadway orchestrator Don Walker and playwright Moss Hart, rallied to save the building. The Playhouse quickly became one of the country’s most famous regional theaters, featuring a roster of American theatrical royalty including Helen Hayes, Kitty Carlisle, George S. Kaufman, Grace Kelly, Robert Redford, Bert Lahr, Walter Matthau, Angela Lansbury, Bernadette Peters, Alan Alda, Tyne Daly, Liza Minnelli and Audra McDonald and remained in continuous operation until December 2010. In 2012, the Playhouse re-opened thanks to the efforts of the Bridge Street Foundation, the nonprofit family foundation of Kevin and Sherri Daugherty, and Broadway producer Jed Bernstein.
Since its renovation, significant productions include Terrence McNally’s “Mothers and Sons” starring Tyne Daly which moved to Broadway and was nominated for two Tony Awards; “Misery” by William Goldman based on the Stephen King novel now playing on Broadway, “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike”, starring Marilu Henner and playwright Christopher Durang, and last summer’s hit production of “Company” starring Justin Guarini, which the Wall Street Journal claimed “borders on the miraculous. The Playhouse is surely headed back into the spotlight.”