Kiss Me, Kate!

Kiss Me, Kate!

Thanks to Roundabout Theatre Company, Kiss Me, Kate! – the first-ever winner of the Tony Award for “Best Musical” – returns to the Great White Way. This brand new revival of the Cole Porter musical comedy classic plays an extended limited engagement at the iconic Studio 54 from February 14 through to June 30, 2019 and stars Tony Award winner and Broadway favorite Kelli O'Hara.

On December 12, 2016, Roundabout staged a one-night-only benefit concert of Kiss Me, Kate! and enthused fans in attendance hoped that a full-scale production would not be far behind. The concert was directed by eight-time Tony Award nominee Scott Ellis and saw Kelli O’Hara and Tony Award nominee Will Chase taking on the roles of the sparring married couple Lilli Vanessi and Fred Graham, respectively. The fans’ wishes were granted in November 2017, when Roundabout did indeed announce a fully-staged Broadway revival for the 2018-2019 season. Even better news was that Ms. O’Hara and Mr. Chase had both signed on to reprise their roles for the production, once again under the direction of Scott Ellis. Enlisting Tony Award-winning choreographer Warren Carlyle and “High School Musical” and Broadway alum Corbin Bleu (playing Bill Calhoun) was the cherry on top of the musical cake.

Kiss Me, Kate! features a book by Samuel and Bella Spewack (who were reportedly experiencing marital troubles of their own at the time). The husband-and-wife writing team had been approached in 1947 by producer Arnold Saint-Subber who had witnessed the domestic unrest between Alfred Lunt and his wife Lynn Fontanne, both on and off the stage, during a 1935 production of The Taming of the Shrew, inspiring the story of the future musical. The Spewacks, in turn, enlisted Cole Porter to write the score, which would ultimately include such standards as “Too Darn Hot,” “So In Love,” and “Always True To You In My Fashion.”

After a brief, pre-Broadway tryout in Philadelphia, Kiss Me, Kate! officially opened at the New Century Theatre on Broadway on December 30, 1948. The original production, which starred Alfred Drake, Patricia Morison, Lisa Kirk, and Harold Lang, went on to win the first-ever Tony Award for “Best Musical” in 1949. Indeed, it won all five categories in which it was nominated (including “Best Author (Musical)” for the Spewacks, “Best Original Score” for Cole Porter, “Best Costume Design” for Lemuel Ayers, and “Best Producer of a Musical” for Arnold Saint-Subber and Lemuel Ayers). Since then, Kiss Me, Kate! has enjoyed a brief Broadway revival in 1952 and a 1999 production that became a Tony Award-winning “Best Revival of a Musical” in 2000. The musical has been performed in numerous West End engagements from 1951 to 2018 and was also adapted into a film in 1953, starring Kathryn Grayson and Howard Keel.

(Photos by Joan Marcus)

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Running time: 
2hrs 35mins (including 1 intermission)
12 images
About Kiss Me, Kate!:

Kiss Me, Kate! tells the story of the staging of a musical adaptation of Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew and follows the conflicted relationship (on and off-stage) between the production's stars - Fred Graham (who also produces and directs) and his ex-wife Lilli Vanessi. The musical comedy includes such Cole Porter classics as “So In Love,” “Too Darn Hot,” and “Always True To You In My Fashion.”

Music & Lyrics by Cole Porter, with a Book by Sam & Bella Spewack and Additional Material by Amanda Green
Roundabout Theatre Company
Scott Ellis
Donald Holder
Brian Ronan
David Rockwell
Warren Carlyle
Jeff Mahshie
Cast list:
Kelli O'Hara (as Kate / Lilli Vanessi), Will Chase (as Fred Graham / Petruchio), Corbin Bleu (as Bill Calhoun / Lucentio), Terence Archie (as Harrison Howell), Mel Johnson Jr. (as Harry Trevor/Baptista), James T. Lane (as Paul), Stephanie Styles (as Lois Lane/Bianca), Adrienne Walker (as Hattie), John Pankow (as Gangster [First Man]), and Richard Kind (as Gangster [Second Man])
Other info:
Music Direction by Paul Gemignani, Orchestrations by Larry Hochman, Dance Arrangements by David Chase, and Hair & Wig Design by David Brian Brown
Kiss Me, Kate! Performance Dates & Times
Previews from: 
February 14, 2019
Opening date: 
March 14, 2019
June 30, 2019

Performance schedules for all shows are subject to change.

Studio 54

254 West 54th Street (between Broadway and 8th Avenue), New York, NY 10019
Nearest subway station:
7th Avenue
Seating Plan:

Latest Kiss Me, Kate! News & Features

Interview with Kiss Me, Kate star Corbin Bleu
May 29, 2019

The "High School Musical"-turned-Broadway-Shooting-Star gives us the lowdown on Roundabout Theatre Company's acclaimed revival of Kiss Me, Kate...

Kelli O'Hara in Kiss Me, Kate
A New York Theatre Guide to... Kiss Me, Kate!
May 2, 2019

One of only two musical revivals on the Great White Way this 2018-2019 season, Roundabout Theatre Company presents the 1948 classic Kiss Me, Kate at the iconic Studio 54. Boasting that luscious score from the legendary Cole Porter with standards such as “So in Love,” “Always True to You in My Fashion,” and “Another Op’nin’, Another Show,” Kiss Me, Kate was the first-ever winner of the Tony Award for “Best Musical” in 1949 and now, 70 years later, it continues to shine bright as one of the nostalgic flag-bearers of Broadway’s Golden Age.

Kelli O'Hara
Kelli O'Hara is set to star in a 2019 Broadway revival of Kiss Me, Kate
November 6, 2017

Here's some news that is just "Too Darn Hot" for you! After the success of the Roundabout Theatre Company's sold-out benefit concert reading in 2016, the decision has been made to mount a full Broadway revival of the classic Cole Porter musical comedy Kiss Me, Kate, with both Tony Award winner Kelli O'Hara reprising her dual roles of Kate and Lilli Vanessi and eight-time Tony Award nominee Scott Ellis returning as director. Tony Award winner Warren Carlyle will also serve as choreographer for the revival. Performances are expected to begin in February 2019 at a venue to be confirmed.

Our Kiss Me, Kate! Review

Kiss Me, Kate!, now playing at Studio 54, is filled with such astonishing music that the show could carry itself on its own two legs clear across the ocean. The fact that mere mortals are allowed to strut their stuff under the spread of its wings is incidental.