If you fell in love to the music of Burt Bacharach, then you won’t want to miss this nostalgic romantic musical comedy. Joe and Lacey were high school sweethearts who drifted apart when they attended different colleges after graduation. Years later, their paths cross again as Joe devises a clever plan to win Lacey back… with the help of one Burt Bacharach.
This coming-of-age story is narrated by Joe who tells the story of his obsession with the music of Burt Bacharach alongside his high school romance with Lacey. The old story of boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy finds girl again, develops a new life in this nostalgic paean to the music and culture of America in the seventies.
Featuring the classics: “What the World Needs Now,” “Walk On By,” “I Say A Little Prayer,” and many more.
Photos courtesy of Jonathan Steele
Andy Christopher* (Joe) NATIONAL TOUR: Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story (Buddy Holly – 25th Anniversary Tour). REGIONAL: Jersey Boys (Bob Gaudio – Ogunquity Playhouse, Buddy… (Buddy Holly – The Muny, Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera, Fulton Theatre, Bucks County Playhouse, Maine State Music Theatre, Casa Mañana, Great Lakes CFA, The Barn Theatre), Hank Williams: Lost Highway (Hank Williams – Flat Rock Playhouse, West Virginia Public Theater), This Land Is Your Land (Woody Guthrie – TheaterWorks Hartford), Rock & Roll Man (Swing – Bucks County Playhouse), Godspell(Jesus – Garza Theatre), Disney Cruise Line CONCERT: Muny Magic at the Sheldon, TheatreSquared. Many thanks to DGRW. Endless love to Esther & Haven. Insta @mrandychristopher. Ps100.2.
Lauren Gire*(Lacey) is so very thrilled to be returning to Ivoryton after appearing in My Way: A Musical Tribute to Frank Sinatra. National Tour: Grease (Rizzo). New York: Something for the Boys (Blossom), Red, Hot and Blue (Nails). Regional: Harmony (Marlene Dietrich/Ingrid), Meet Me in St. Louis (Esther), A Little Night Music (Petra), White Christmas, Damn Yankees, Sunset Blvd. and Sound of Music. TV: Sneaky Pete, and assorted voice over.
Adrianne Hick*(Sally) is thrilled to be “Bacharach” at the Ivoryton Playhouse! Recent credits include Nellie in South Pacific(Ivoryton Playhouse & Wick Theatre), B’way Nat’l Tour of Les Miserables,Int’l tour of Jekyll & Hyde, Alice Murphy (Bright Star), Billie (Nice Work if You Can Get It), Narrator (Joseph…), and Velma(Hairspray) at Surflight Theatre, Company(Lyric Stage Co.), productions at The Fireside, Hampton Theatre Co., The Bickford, MTL, and in NYC in The Laramie Project and others. What the world needs now, is love, sweet love!
Katie Luke(Female Ensemble) is a New York based actor from California and is excited for her Ivoryton debut! International: Disney Cruise Lines (Elsa) Regional: Newsies (Katherine Plumber, SALT Award winner) Guys and Dolls(Adelaide) Nunsense (Sister Mary Leo) The Drowsy Chaperone(Janet Van de Graaf) and Kiss Me Kate(Lois Lane/Bianca). Training: BFA Musical Theatre, The Hartt School. Much love to her family and friends and Gregg Baker Management. Website: katieluke.com IG: @kikibuggy
Neal Mayer*(George/Others) is thrilled to be back in Ivoryton where he has played Fagin in Oliver!, Wilbur in Hairspray and Harding in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. Broadway: Les Misérables Off-Broadway: Mark Felt, Superstar, Forbidden Broadway National Tours: Priscilla Queen of the Desert, 101 Dalmatians (Dir. Jerry Zaks) U.S. Premiere (La Jolla and Paper Mill) and Studio Cast Recording of Hunchback of Notre Dame. TV: “Blue Bloods,” “All My Children,” “The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon.” nealmayer.net
Josh Powell*(Jerry) is thrilled to return to Ivoryton where he previously appeared in the Sinatra musical My Way and as several suitors (and one stout German lady) in Love Quest. Connecticut audiences have also seen him at Goodspeed (City of Angels), Seven Angels (George and Gracie2), and The Palace (Hansel & Gretel). Last season Josh performed in The Fantasticks (Pittsburgh Public), Fourth Messanger (NYMF), Syncopation (Penguin Rep), and the short film Better Dead Than Red. His numerous TV appearances include guest-starring on BLUE BLOODS and DOA.
Nathan Richardson(Ensemble) is a New York based actor and singer from Boston, MA. Recent roles include: Jean-Michel (La Cage Aux Folles), Parker (Freaky Friday), Hanschen (Spring Awakening), and Matthew (Altar Boyz). Training: Boston College, B.A., Boston Conservatory, M.F.A. Thanks to my incredibly supportive family as well as the wonderful people who made this production possible. http://www.nathanrichardsonactor.com/ Instagram: @naterichnyc
Director and Choreographer: Brian Feehan
Musical Director: Mike Morris
Stage Manager: James Joseph Clark*
Scenic Designer: Emily Nichols
Lighting, Sound and Projection Coordinator: Tate Burmeister
Costume Designer: Lisa Bebey
* member of Actors Equity
Join us for an opening night reception following the 8:00pm performance on Friday, March 22nd. Light refreshments will be served.
Check back here for press releases, photos and video clips!
Love, laughter and the music of Bacharach and David
Burt & Me by Larry McKenna at the Ivoryton Playhouse
March 20th – April 7th
The Ivoryton Playhouse opens its 2019 season with a dazzling parade of hits by the songwriting team of Burt Bacharach and Hal David in the musical comedy BURT & ME by Larry McKenna. This coming-of-age story is narrated by Joe who tells the story of his obsession with the music of Burt Bacharach alongside his high school romance with Lacey. The old story of boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy finds girl again, develops a new life in this nostalgic paean to the music and culture of America in the seventies.
When Burt Bacharach and Hal David met in the New York City offices of Famous Music in 1957, they had no idea that their collaboration would have such an impact on the world of pop music. In their years of writing together, they produced almost 150 songs. Sometimes the words came first, sometimes the music, sometimes both at once. One Iyric (“Alfie”) took three days; another (“What The World Needs Now Is Love”), three years. This nostalgic juke box musical contains many of their greatest hits including What the World Needs Now,” “Walk On By,” “I Say A Little Prayer” and “This Guy’s in Love with You”.
The cast includes Playhouse favorites Adrianne Hick* (SOUTH PACIFIC), Lauren Gire* (MY WAY: THE FRANK SINATRA STORY) Neal Mayer*, (ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST and OLIVER!) and Josh Powell* (MY WAY: THE FRANK SINATRA STORY and LOVE QUEST). Making their Playhouse debut are Andy Christopher* as our protagonist, Joe, Katie Luke and Nathan Richardson. The show is directed and choreographed by Brian Feehan, musical directed by Michael Morris, set design by Emily Nichols, lighting design by Marcus Abbott, sound design by Tate Burmeister and costumes by Lisa Bebey.
This may well be an evening of pure nostalgia but it also serves to remind us of Bacharach’s genius for melody, the complexity of his arrangements and David’s keen sense of human motivation. These are the songs that form the soundtrack of our youth and even their sad songs make you feel good.
BURT & ME opens at the Ivoryton Playhouse on March 20th and runs through April 7th, 2019. Performance times are Wednesday and Sunday matinees at 2pm. Evening performances are Wednesday and Thursday at 7:30pm, Friday and Saturday at 8pm. There will be one Thursday matinee on March 21st.
Tickets are $55 adult / $50 senior / $25 student / $20 children 12 and are available by calling the Playhouse box office at 860-767-7318 or by visiting our website at www.ivorytonplayhouse.org (Group rates and subscriptions are available by calling the box office for information.) The Playhouse is located at 103 Main Street in Ivoryton.
*denotes member of Actors Equity
Members of the press are welcome at any performance after March 21st. Please call ahead for tickets.
Photos courtesy of Jonathan Steele
Looking for something to do? Ivoryton Playhouse has been voted best place to see live theatre by readers of The Shoreline Times for five years in a row. Come to Essex and visit our historic, professional theatre – a Connecticut treasure!
Did You Know
Along with Bob Dylan, John Lennon and Paul McCartney and Paul Simon, Bacharach is a legend of popular music. A recipient of three Academy Awards and eight Grammy Awards (including the 2008 Lifetime Achievement Award and 1997 Trustees Award with collaborator Hal David), he revolutionized the music of the 1950s and 60s and is regularly bracketed with legendary names, ranging from Cole Porter to Sir George Martin, as one of a handful of visionaries who pioneered new forms of music from the second half of the 20th Century and continued into the 21st Century. Six decades into one of songwriting’s most successful and honored careers – marked by 48 Top 10 hits, nine #1 songs, more than 500 compositions and a landmark 50+-year run on the charts.
The Actors Equity Union has removed the mask mandate for theatre audiences! The mask mandate has been lifted but we want to assure everyone that we will still be following stringent safety protocols including socially distanced seating, and no concessions will be sold, except water, for this first production.
The health and safety of our actors, patrons and staff is our top priority. We have made many improvements to the Ivoryton Playhouse for your protection including socially distanced seating, increasing the flow of outside air to 40%, installation of air purification units, contactless ticketing, increased cleaning, hand sanitization stations and more.