Finian's Rainbow: Cheyenne Jackson to reprise the role of 'Woody'

Cheyenne Jackson will reprise the role of 'Woody,' which he played in the New York City Center Encores! production of Finian's Rainbow, when the musical transfers to Broadway�s St. James Theatre, opening on 29 Oct 2009, following previews from 8 Oct 2009.

Jackson�s Broadway credits include' Xanadu,' 'All Shook Up,' 'Aida,' 'Thoroughly Modern Millie,' 'On the Twentieth Century,' and 'The 24 Hour Plays.' He played 'Joe Hardy' in the Encores! production of 'Damn Yankees.' Off-Broadway/workshops include 'Altar Boyz,' 'The Agony and the Agony,' 'The Cartells,' 'Little Mermaid,' 'Tale of Two Cities,' 'Orpheus,' 'The Great Gatsby,' 'Illyria,' 'Pretty Dead Girl' and 'Red Eye of Love.' His television credits include 'Family Practice,' 'Life on Mars' and 'Ugly Betty.'

Jackson joins the previously announced Jim Norton (Finian) and Kate Baldwin (Sharon) who will also revive the roles which they originated in the New York City Center�s Encores! off-Broadway production. They will be joined by Chuck Cooper (Bill) and Christopher Fitzgerald (Og).

Finian's Rainbow has a book by E.Y. Harburg and Fred Saidy; lyrics by E.Y. Harburg; music by Burton Lane; with book adaptation by Arthur Perlman and original adaptation for New York City Center Encores! by David Ives. It is directed and choreographed by Warren Carlyle; musical direction is by Rob Berman.

Finian's Rainbow's critically acclaimed five-performance run at New York City Center�s Encores! series played from 26 - 29 Mar 2009.

The creative team will feature set design by John Lee Beatty, costume design by Toni-Leslie James, lighting design by Ken Billington and sound design is by Scott Lehrer.

Finian's Rainbow tells the story of the Irishman Finian McLonergan and his daughter Sharon who travel to a small Southern town in the mythical state of Missitucky with plans to bury a stolen pot of gold in the shadows of Fort Knox, in the mistaken belief it will grow and multiply. They have been followed from Ireland by the owner of the gold, a leprechaun, who shows up determined to recover his treasure.

The musical�s score boasts such classic songs as "Old Devil Moon," "How Are Things in Glocca Morra?," "When I'm Not Near the Girl I Love (I Love the Girl I'm Near)," Look to the Rainbow," and "If This Isn't Love.�

Finian�s Rainbow opened to rave reviews during its five-performance run last season at City Center: �Radiant. Ebullient. Mighty waves of laughter. (NY Times); "a pot of musical gold! A 24-carat revival packed with fantastic tunes." (NY Daily News); �Dazzling! Magical! A stirring production" (NY Post); "High spirits, extravagant comedy, political satire and irrepressible, twinkle-eyed wit" (Variety).

This will be the first Broadway revival of the classic musical in nearly 50 years. The show had its Broadway premiere in 1947, which ran for 725 performances and won three Tony Awards, including one for star David Wayne and one for legendary choreographer Michael Kidd who made his Broadway debut with the show.

One of the first of the socially conscious postwar musicals, Finian's Rainbow is unusual in that it deals in a satirical way with issues of class, race, and economics, most specifically in the character of a bigoted Southern senator who is accidentally turned black. It was also notable in its time for featuring an integrated cast at a time when most shows did not and for featuring a mute character who expresses herself solely through dance.

The musical was revived in 1955 at City Center and in 1960 at Broadway�s 46th Street Theatre.

Click here to buy tickets for Finian�s Rainbow

Originally published on

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