PHOTO EXCLUSIVE: "The Berkshire Portraits" With Barrington Stage On the Town Star Nancy Opel
By Matthew Blank
Tony nominee Nancy Opel kicks off her summer with a stay in the gorgeous Berkshires, playing the role of Madame Dilly in Barrington Stage's On the Town. Also a talented photographer, Opel shares a variety of portraits featuring her castmates and the stunning scenery to be found nearby.
"Well, the cast of On The Town has been up here in the beautiful Berkshires since May," says Opel. "It was chilly when we arrived here in the mountains, but now, past the fourth of July, we have the kind of summer weather the Berkshires are famous for- no wonder so many city dwellers made their escapes here!"
"The scenery and available activities are sublime- and I personally have climbed up almost everything here that wasn't nailed down. Sometimes in the rain! I have stalked birds (seen several species for the first time, including a bald eagle) watched crazy cloud formations and witnessed a super moon! Stuck my toes in glorious waterfalls! Almost got eaten by a dog on Lake Pontoosuc! It's been incredible. The show has been a smash up here by any standard, I am happy to report. Enthusiastic near sell-outs every performance, beautiful scenery, and many happy memories. What's not to love?"
Directed by Tony Award winner John Rando (Urinetown) and choreographed by Emmy Award winner Joshua Bergasse (“Smash”), with music direction by Darren R. Cohen, On the Town continues through July 13. Rando, Bergasse and Cohen are all BSC associate artists.
Barrington Stage Company’s cast features Rupert (Sweet Charity, Falsettos, Legally Blonde) as Judge Pitkin and Opel (Urinetown) as Madame Dilly with Tony Yazbeck (Gypsy, A Chorus Line) as Gabey, Deanna Doyle (Encores! On Your Toes) as Ivy Smith, Elizabeth Stanley (Million Dollar Quartet, Encores! Merrily We Roll Along) as Claire, Clyde Alves (Nice Work If You Can Get It, Anything Goes) as Ozzie, Jay Armstrong Johnson (Hands on a Hard Body) as Chip and Alysha Umphress (American Idiot, On a Clear Day…) as Hildy.
Rounding out the ensemble are Chip Abbott, Jane Bernhard, Chloe Campbell, Jenifer Dillow, Elizabeth Flanagan, Hannah Florence, Allison Guinn, Karen Hyland, Christopher Job, Michael Kushner, Jason Luks, Megan Mekjian, Harris Milgrim, Kyle Scanlon, Michael Scirrotto, Kelly Sheehan, Gordon Stanley and Chloe Tiso.
On the Town, according to press notes, “is the story of three sailors on a 24-hour leave in New York City in 1944. Squeezed for time, they all manage to find love and incredible adventures in the Big Apple.” On the Town features classics such as “New York, New York,” “I Can Cook Too,” “Lonely Town” and "Some Other Time.”
On the Town features the music of Leonard Bernstein and the book and lyrics of Betty Comden and Adolph Green, based on the ballet “Fancy Free” by Jerome Robbins.
Other members of the creative team include Beowulf Boritt (sets), Jennifer Caprio (costumes), Jason Lyons (lighting), Ed Chapman (sound) and Renee Lutz (production stage manager).
There will be a post-show discussion following the June 18 7 PM performance as well as a free “Conversations with…” event, A Helluva Guy! Adolph Green’s Broadway, where Tony-winning composer-lyricist William Finn (Spelling Bee) interviews the family of great American playwright, screenwriter and lyricist Tony Award winner Adolph Green — lyricist Amanda Green and Vogue theatre critic Adam Green — on his life and career and his experience creating On the Town June 16 at 3 PM.
BSC is under the leadership of artistic director Julianne Boyd and managing director Tristan Wilson. The Boyd-Quinson Mainstage is located at 30 Union Street in Pittsfield, MA. For more information and tickets, visit BarringtonStageCo.org.
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