Once Gets New Man and Muse on Broadway; Ben Hope and Laura Dreyfuss Take Leads March 26
By Kenneth Jones
Ben Hope and Laura Dreyfuss will be the new "Guy" and "Girl," respectively, of Broadway's 2012 Tony Award-winning Best Musical Once, beginning March 26. Also joining the cast that day are Carlos Valdes as Andrej and Claire Wellin as Réza.
Hope has been manning the role of Guy at the Bernard B. Jacobs for at least four weeks, stepping in for Steve Kazee, who won the 2012 Best Actor (Musical) Tony for playing the broken Irish troubadour who falls for a Czech musician-muse (originated by 2012 Tony nominee Cristin Milioti). Kazee has been out on vocal rest.
The official final performance for Kazee, Milioti, Will Connolly (as Andrej) and 2012 Tony nominee Elizabeth A. Davis (as Réza) will be March 24. It was not immediately clear if Kazee would be playing his final week.
Inspired by the indie film of the same name, about a Dublin singer-songwriter who is emotionally and creatively stuck, the Broadway musical by playwright Enda Walsh and the film's songwriters Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová also features David Abeles, David Patrick Kelly, Jillian Lebling, Eliza Holland Madore, Anne L. Nathan, Lucas Papaelias, Andy Taylor, Erikka Walsh, Paul Whitty, and J. Michael Zygo.
Hope is the leader of the honky-tonk band Ben Hope and the Uptown Outfit (uptownoutfit.com). He has appeared regionally as Hank Williams in Hank Williams: Lost Highway and Buddy Holly in Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story.
Dreyfuss appeared on Broadway and in the first national tour of the Tony Award winning production of Hair.
Valdes has toured with Jersey Boys and appeared regionally in High School Musical, The Wedding Singer and Fiddler on the Roof (WVPT).
Wellin has appeared at regional theatres such as the Lookingglass Theatre Company, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Goodman Theatre and Profiles Theatre. She has lso been seen on TV's "Detroit 1-8-7" and NBC's "Reconstruction."
Once is directed by John Tiffany (Black Watch), with movement by Steven Hoggett (Black Watch, American Idiot) and music supervision and orchestrations by Martin Lowe (Mamma Mia!).
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