Vivian Beaumont Theatre, (4/18/2005 - 7/02/2006)

First Preview: Mar 17, 2005
Opening Date: Apr 18, 2005
Closing Date: Jul 02, 2006
Total Previews: 36
Total Performances: 504

Category: Musical, Original, Broadway
Setting: Florence and Rome in the summer of 1953, with occasional side trips to America.

Opening Night Production Staff

Theatre Owned / Operated by Lincoln Center Theater (André Bishop: Artistic Director; Bernard Gersten: Executive Producer)

Produced by Lincoln Center Theater (André Bishop: Artistic Director; Bernard Gersten: Executive Producer); LCT Musical Theater Associate Producer: Ira Weitzman; Produced by arrangement with Turner Entertainment Co.

World Premiere produced at Intiman Theatre Company (Bartlett Sher, Artistic Director; Laura Penn, Managing Director); World Premiere produced at The Goodman Theatre (Robert Falls, Artistic Director; Roche Schulfer, Executive Director)

Book by Craig Lucas; Music by Adam Guettel; Lyrics by Adam Guettel; Based on the novel by Elizabeth Spencer; Music orchestrated by Ted Sperling and Adam Guettel; Additional Orchestrations: Bruce Coughlin; Musical Director: Ted Sperling

Directed by Bartlett Sher; Musical Staging by Jonathan Butterell

Scenic Design by Michael Yeargan; Costume Design by Catherine Zuber; Lighting Design by Christopher Akerlind; Sound Design by Acme Sound Partners and Nevin Steinberg; Hair and Wig Design by Jerry Altenburg

LCT General Manager: Adam Siegel; Company Manager: Matthew Markoff; Associate Co. Mgr: Josh Lowenthal

Stage Manager: Thom Widmann; LCT Production Manager: Jeff Hamlin

Conducted by Ted Sperling; Associate Conductor: Dan Riddle; Piano, Celesta: Dan Riddle; Concert Master: Christian Hebel; Violin: Christian Hebel, Matthew Lehmann, Sylvia D'Avanzo, James Tsao, Lisa Matricardi and Katherine Livolsi-Stern; Cello: Peter Sachon and Ariane Lallemand; Harp: Victoria Drake; Bass: Brian Cassier; Clarinet/English Horn/Oboe: Richard Heckman; Bassoon/Contrabassoon: Gili Sharett; Percussion: Billy Miller; Guitar/Mandolin: Andrew Schwartz; Musical Coordinator: Seymour "Red" Press; Music Preparation: Emily Grishman Music Preparation

Casting: Janet Foster; General Press Representative: Philip Rinaldi; LCT Director of Development: Hattie K. Jutagir; LCT Director of Marketing: Linda Mason Ross; Dance Captain: Laura Griffith; Dialect Coach: Ralph Zito; Advertising: Serino Coyne, Inc.; Poster Art: James McMullan; Photographer: Joan Marcus

Developed with the assistance of The Sundance Theatre Laboratory

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Opening Night Cast

Michael BerresseGiuseppe Naccarelli
Fabrizio's brother
David BonannoEnsemble
David BurnhamEnsemble
Victoria ClarkMargaret Johnson
Patti CohenourSignora Naccarelli
Fabrizio's mother
Beau GravitteRoy Johnson
Margaret's husband
Laura GriffithEnsemble
Mark HarelikSignor Naccarelli
Fabrizio's father
(Mar 17, 2005 - Sep 11, 2005)
Prudence Wright HolmesEnsemble
Jennifer HughesEnsemble
Felicity LaFortuneTour Guide
Michel MoinotEnsemble
Matthew MorrisonFabrizio Naccarelli
(Mar 17, 2005 - Sep 01, 2005)
Kelli O'HaraClara Johnson
Margaret's daughter
(Mar 17, 2005 - Dec 04, 2005)
Joseph SiravoPriest
Sarah Uriarte BerryFranca Naccarelli
Giuseppe's wife

Swings: Glenn Seven Allen and Catherine LaValle

Understudies: Glenn Seven Allen (Priest), David Bonanno (Giuseppe Naccarelli), David Burnham (Fabrizio Naccarelli), Patti Cohenour (Margaret Johnson), Laura Griffith (Franca Naccarelli), Jennifer Hughes (Clara Johnson), Felicity LaFortune (Signora Naccarelli), Catherine LaValle (Tour Guide) and Joseph Siravo (Roy Johnson, Signor Naccarelli)

Awards and Nominations

Tony Award®

 2005 Best Musical [nominee] 

Produced by Lincoln Center Theater (André Bishop: Artistic Director; Bernard Gersten: Executive Producer)

 2005 Best Book of a Musical [nominee] 

Book by Craig Lucas

winner 2005 Best Original Score [winner] 

Music by Adam Guettel; Lyrics by Adam Guettel

winner 2005 Best Actress in a Musical [winner] 

Victoria Clark

 2005 Best Featured Actor in a Musical [nominee] 

Matthew Morrison

 2005 Best Featured Actress in a Musical [nominee] 

Kelli O'Hara

 2005 Best Direction of a Musical [nominee] 

Bartlett Sher

winner 2005 Best Orchestrations [winner] 

Bruce Coughlin

winner 2005 Best Orchestrations [winner] 

Adam Guettel

winner 2005 Best Orchestrations [winner] 

Ted Sperling

winner 2005 Best Scenic Design of a Musical [winner] 

Michael Yeargan

winner 2005 Best Costume Design of a Musical [winner] 

Catherine Zuber

winner 2005 Best Lighting Design of a Musical [winner] 

Christopher Akerlind

Drama Desk Award

 2005 Outstanding New Musical [nominee] 

Produced by Lincoln Center Theater (André Bishop: Artistic Director; Bernard Gersten: Executive Producer)

 2005 Outstanding Actor in a Musical [nominee] 

Matthew Morrison

winner 2005 Outstanding Actress in a Musical [winner] 

Victoria Clark

 2005 Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical [nominee] 

Sarah Uriarte Berry

 2005 Outstanding Director of a Musical [nominee] 

Bartlett Sher

winner 2005 Outstanding Orchestrations [winner] 

Ted Sperling

winner 2005 Outstanding Orchestrations [winner] 

Adam Guettel

winner 2005 Outstanding Orchestrations [winner] 

Bruce Coughlin

winner 2005 Outstanding Set Design of a Musical [winner] 

Michael Yeargan

winner 2005 Outstanding Music [winner] 

Music by Adam Guettel

 2005 Outstanding Costume Design [nominee] 

Catherine Zuber

winner 2005 Outstanding Lighting Design [winner] 

Christopher Akerlind

 2005 Outstanding Sound Design [nominee] 

Sound Design by Acme Sound Partners


music by Adam Guettel; lyrics by Adam Guettel

ACT 1 Sung By
Statues and StoriesMargaret Johnson and Clara Johnson (Margaret's daughter)
The Beauty IsClara Johnson (Margaret's daughter)
Il Mondo Era VuotoFabrizio Naccarelli
PasseggiataFabrizio Naccarelli and Clara Johnson (Margaret's daughter)
The Joy You FeelFranca Naccarelli (Giuseppe's wife)
Dividing DayMargaret Johnson
HysteriaClara Johnson (Margaret's daughter) and Margaret Johnson
Say It SomehowClara Johnson (Margaret's daughter) and Fabrizio Naccarelli
ACT 2 Sung By
AiutamiThe Naccarelli Family
The Light in the PiazzaClara Johnson (Margaret's daughter)
TiradeClara Johnson (Margaret's daughter)
Octet (Reprise) Company
The Beauty Is (Reprise) Margaret Johnson
Let's WalkSignor Naccarelli (Fabrizio's father) and Margaret Johnson
Love to MeFabrizio Naccarelli
FableMargaret Johnson


AP: "'Piazza' Celebrates Intense Love"

Funny where love may turn up. In "The Light in the Piazza," which opened Monday at Lincoln Center's Vivian Beaumont Theater, it arrives on a gust of wind, blowing a young woman's straw hat across a Florentine plaza and into the hands of a handsome, almost fairy-tale fellow.

This enchanting musical celebrates the unexpectedness and intensity of it all, no matter what the roadblocks, and does it with style. "Piazza" is a show of considerable beauty - more melodically, emotionally and visually satisfying than any other musical this season.

It is a love story that focuses not only on the conventional aspects of romance such as love at first sight. "Piazza" also artfully examines a mother's devotion to her child as well as several variations of married love, most poignantly the arid union of a Southern matron now on a tour of Italy with her daughter, and her husband, a tobacco company executive, who has remained at home in North Carolina.

All this is found in Elizabeth Spencer's novella on which "The Light in the Piazza" is based. Composer Adam Guettel and book writer Craig Lucas have taken Spencer's perceptive and often gently humorous dissection of some Americans abroad in the early 1950s and turned it into a literate, yet heartfelt entertainment.

In a Broadway season awash in clever if strenuously constructed silliness - "Monty Python's Spamalot" and "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels" come to mind - "The Light in the Piazza" stands out as something more: a truly adult musical with serious intentions.

Lucas, author of such plays as "Prelude to a Kiss" and "Reckless," has contributed a clear-headed adaptation of Spencer's tale. It centers on Margaret, that middle-aged woman, and her twentysomething daughter, Clara, described by her mother as "a special child."

"She is not quite as she seems," says Margaret at one point during the evening before the young woman's mystery is revealed.

It is Clara who is smitten by Fabrizio, a young Italian who is equally infatuated with her. But Clara, who blossoms in the warm Italian sun, doesn't just get this persistent suitor. Along with Fabrizio comes the young man's family: a gallant father, a doting mother, a tom cat of a brother and a jealous, amorous sister-in-law. Being Italian, they all sing beautifully.

And Guettel, who wrote the off-Broadway musical "Floyd Collins," has provided some intricate yet gorgeous melodies for them to warble. The composer has a distinct musical voice, not flashy, but quietly insinuating. His songs sneak up on you, capture a character or a moment and then quickly move on. Yet the memory remains.

And his lyrics refuse to find their way to easy rhyme.

The cast serves this material with astonishing skill, starting with a perfectly realized performance by Victoria Clark as the distraught American mother. Clark, a musical-theater veteran of such shows as "Titanic" and the Matthew Broderick revival of "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying," flourishes here. -

The tremulous, pent-up Margaret brims with love, for her daughter and for her husband, a love that is not consistently returned. In "Dividing Day," one of the show's pivotal musical numbers, Margaret realizes love has disappeared from her marriage. It's a shattering moment that the actress turns into an aria of devastation.

Kelli O'Hara is lovely as the childlike, impetuous Clara, the show's most vocally demanding role. Matthew Morrison is properly ardent as Clara's newfound love. And there are firmly etched portraits by Mark Harelik and Patti Cohenour as the youth's parents, Michael Berresse as his wandering brother and, particularly, Sarah Uriarte Berry as his spitfire of a sister-in-law.

In a way, Margaret is the outsider in this group, the one unattached person on stage. In one striking tableau, three couples are on stage, with Margaret looking longingly at their togetherness.

Bartlett Sher has directed the show with remarkable fluidity. Designer Michael Yeargan's elegant sets float effortlessly across the vast Beaumont stage. Columns and arches, along with a statue or two and drops of Italian renaissance paintings, represent the glories of Florence. Catherine Zuber's costumes, particularly for the women, are witty time capsules, instant reminders that we are in 1953, an era of full skirts and trim, tight suits.

"No one with a dream should come to Italy, no matter how dead and buried you think it is...This is where Italy will get you," Margaret says during one of her many asides to the audience. That bright Italian sunlight will expose, for better or worse, all your secrets. In "Piazza," those secrets - and how they are dealt with - make for an entrancing, affecting musical.


Replacement/Transfer Info

The following people are credited as replacements or additions if they were not credited on opening night.

Vivian Beaumont Theatre

(4/18/2005 - 7/2/2006)
Assistant Co. Mgr: Jessica Perlmeter Cochrane(circa. Sep 2005 - ?).

Production Stage Manager: Peter Wolf(Sep 12, 2005 - ?); Assistant Stage Mgr: Matthew Melchiorre(circa. Jun 2005 - ?).


Katie Clarke
Clara Johnson
Margaret's daughter
(Dec 17, 2005 - Jul 2, 2006)
Patti Cohenour
Fri. eve. & Sat. mat.
Margaret Johnson
Jennifer Hughes
Clara Johnson
Margaret's daughter
(Dec 6, 2005 - Dec 15, 2005)
Aaron Lazar
Fabrizio Naccarelli (Sep 2, 2005 - ?)
Chris Sarandon
Signor Naccarelli
Fabrizio's father
(Sep 13, 2005 - ?)
Diane Sutherland
Fri. eve. & Sat. mat.
Signora Naccarelli
Fabrizio's mother

Understudies: Jennifer Hughes (Clara Johnson).

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