Jeff Buckley's The Last Goodbye, with Jay Armstrong Johnson and Talisa Friedman, Begins Sept. 22 at Old Globe

By Carey Purcell
22 Sep 2013

Jay Armstrong Johnson and Talisa Friedman
Jay Armstrong Johnson and Talisa Friedman
Photo by Matthew Murphy

The Last Goodbye, a musical adaptation of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, featuring songs by Jeff Buckley, begins performances at The Old Globe Sept. 22. 

Conceived and adapted by Michael Kimmel, The Last Goodbye will officially open Oct. 6; performances continue through Nov. 3.

Directed by two-time Tony Award nominee Alex Timbers (Peter and the Starcatcher, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson), the cast features Jay Armstrong Johnson as Romeo and Talisa Friedman as Juliet. Armstrong's stage credits include Hands on a Hardbody and the national tours of Catch Me If You Can and Hair. Friedman has performed in Ah, Wilderness!; The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie; The Bardy Bunch; and Donnie Darko.

The cast also features Hale Appleman (Mercutio), Stephen Bogardus (Friar Lawrence), Nancy Snow Carr (Lady Montague), Shannon Cochran (Lady Capulet), Brandon Gill (Benvolio), Bryan Scott Johnson (Montague), Eric Morris (Paris), Daniel Oreskes (Capulet), Tonye Patano (Nurse), Wallace Smith (Prince Escalus) and Jeremy Woodard (Tybalt) with James Brown III, Billy Bustamante, Drew Foster, Adam Perry, Steve Schepis and Nik Walker (Ensemble), Megan Carmitchel (Offstage Singer) and Bradley Gibson (Swing).



"The Last Goodbye is a new musical fusing Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet with some of the most thrilling rock music of the past 20 years," press notes state. "That light in yonder window is still the east and Juliet is still the sun...but the sound in her bedchamber is all new: the sweeping, emotional and extraordinarily beautiful songs of the late rock icon Jeff Buckley."

"I am deeply proud and very excited to launch the Globe's 2013-14 Season, and my tenure as artistic director here, with The Last Goodbye," Barry Edelstein said in an earlier statement. "This daring, moving and hugely entertaining work brings together many of the things that are central to the Globe's identity: a classic text, the vibrant energies of the musical theatre, a sumptuous and splendid production and a creative team of the first rank in the American theatre. It's a particular thrill to welcome Alex Timbers to the Globe, an artist whose work delights and surprises and whose sensibility renews the American musical in ways I both appreciate and admire. I know that audiences in San Diego and beyond will love this powerful and original show."

The creative team includes Christopher Barreca (scenic design), Jennifer Moeller (costume design), Justin Townsend (lighting design), Ken Travis (sound design), Ian Hersey (text consultant), Kate Waters (fight director), Jacob Grigolia-Rosenbaum (associate fight director), Carrie Gardner, CSA (casting) and Peter Lawrence (stage manager).

The Last Goodbye features choreography by Emmy Award nominee Sonya Tayeh ("So You Think You Can Dance") and orchestrations, music direction and arrangements by Kris Kukul.

Tickets can be purchased online at TheOldGlobe.org, by phone at (619) 23-GLOBE or by visiting the Box Office at 1363 Old Globe Way in Balboa Park.