Sutton Foster to star opposite Hugh Jackman in The Music Man on Broadway
The Broadway revival of The Music Man will begin performances on Broadway on September 9, 2020.
Hugh Jackman has found his leading lady... Two-time Tony Award winner Sutton Foster! The Broadway favorite will take on the role of Marian Paroo (opposite Mr. Jackman as Professor Harold Hill) in the previously announced Broadway revival of Meredith Willson's The Music Man, which is scheduled to begin previews at a yet-to-be-named Shubert venue on September 9, 2020, ahead of an official opening on October 22.
Ms. Foster commented: “There were bells on a hill but I never heard them ringing. No, I never heard them at all. Till there was Hugh."
Sutton Foster shot into Broadway superstardom with her turn as Millie Dillmount in the 2002 premiere of Thoroughly Modern Millie, winning a Tony Award in the category of "Best Actress in a Musical" for her efforts. Since then, she has wowed audiences and critics alike with a 2011 Tony Award-winning performance as Reno Sweeney in Anything Goes, and Tony-nominated performances in Violet (2014), Shrek The Musical (2009), The Drowsy Chaperone (2006), and Little Women (2005). Her other Broadway credits include Young Frankenstein, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Annie, Grease, and Les Misérables, and she was last seen on the New York stage as Charity Hope Valentine in The New Group's 2016 off-Broadway revival of Sweet Charity. TV audiences will perhaps know her from her recurring role as Liza Miller on "Younger".
Synopsis: "The Music Man, featuring a book, music & lyrics by Meredith Wilson, follows con man Harold Hill, who poses as a musician and hatches a plot to sell gullible musical instruments and uniforms to townsfolk in the Midwest with the promise to train them and turn them into credible bands. His intentions, however, are to skip town before he gives a single music lesson. Marian, a local librarian and piano teacher, sees right through him and threatens to out him... until the two end up falling in love, of course."
The Music Man marks the first time that Hugh Jackman will star in a Broadway musical since his 2004 Tony Award-winning turn as Peter Allen in the Broadway premiere of The Boy From Oz.
Mr. Jackman previously commented: “The first musical I was ever a part of was the phenomenal The Music Man. The year was 1983, and I was at Knox Grammar School in Sydney, Australia. I was one of the traveling salesmen, and I think I can actually (almost) remember that unforgettable opening number! That was probably the moment when the magic of theater was born in me. The idea of bringing The Music Man back to Broadway has been lurking in the back of my brain for a long time, maybe even for 35 years, and when Scott Rudin called me with that very idea, I was floored. To finally be doing this is a huge thrill.”
Producer Scott Rudin has assembled the celebrated creative team behind his recent Tony Award-winning Bette Midler-led revival of Hello, Dolly! for what is sure to be a mammoth production on the Great White Way, including four-time Tony Award-winning director Jerry Zaks and Tony Award-winning choreographer Warren Carlyle, alongside four-time Tony Award winner Santo Loquasto (serving as scenic & costume designer), six-time Tony Award winner Natasha Katz (lighting designer), Tony Award winner Scott Lehrer (sound designer), and David Chase (providing the dance arrangements). New additions to the creative team include musical director Patrick Vaccariello and Tony Award-winning orchestrator Jonathan Tunick.
The Music Man originally premiered on Broadway in December 1957, becoming an instant hit, and went on to win a total of five Tony Awards in 1958 (including "Best Musical") and established itself as one of the all-time classics of American musical theater, running for 1,375 performances in New York City. In addition, the original cast recording of the musical comedy won the first-ever Grammy Award for "Best Original Cast Album" and hit the number one spot on the Billboard charts. It would remain in the charts for an astonishing 245 weeks.
Hugh Jackman last appeared on Broadway in Jez Butterworth's three-person drama The River from October 2014 to February 2015. Aside from his 2003 Broadway debut in The Boy From Oz, he also starred alongside Daniel Craig in the 2009 Broadway premiere of A Steady Rain and in his own concert series Hugh Jackman: Back on Broadway in the fall of 2011 (resulting in a special Tony Award in 2012). He earned great acclaim, including an Olivier Award nomination, for his performance as Curly McLain in the 1998 National Theatre production of Oklahoma! and his Australian stage credits include Disney's Beauty and the Beast and Sunset Boulevard. On screen, he is best known for his Grammy Award-winning and Golden Globe-nominated role as P.T. Barnum in the smash hit movie musical "The Greatest Showman," his Oscar-nominated and Golden Globe-winning role as Jean Valjean in "Les Misérables," and as Wolverine in the hugely successful "X-Men" movie franchize.
Additional casting will be announced at a later date.
(Photos by Joan Marcus)