Max von Essen Will Join Broadway Cast of Chicago | Playbill

Broadway News Max von Essen Will Join Broadway Cast of Chicago

The record-breaking, Tony-winning revival continues at the Ambassador.

Max von Essen at opening night of A Beautiful Noise Michaelah Reynolds

Max von Essen, Tony-nominated for his performance as Henri Baurel in the stage adaptation of An American in Paris, is about to give us the old razzle dazzle. Von Essen will join the cast of the Tony-winning revival of Chicago next month.

The Broadway favorite will step into the role of slick lawyer Billy Flynn beginning November 6 at the Ambassador Theatre. Von Essen has also been seen on Broadway in Anastasia, Evita, Dance of the Vampires, Jesus Christ Superstar, and Les Misérables, while his touring credits include Falsettos, Xanadu, and Chicago (playing Mary Sunshine).

The current Broadway cast features Charlotte d’Amboise as Roxie Hart, Kimberly Marable as Velma Kelly, Ryan Silverman as Billy Flynn, Lili Thomas as Matron “Mama” Morton, Raymond Bokhour as Amos Hart, and R. Lowe as Mary Sunshine.

READ: Lili Thomas Was Once Told She Was 'Too Ethnic,' Now She's Making History in Chicago

The ensemble includes David Bushman, Christine Cornish, Jennnifer Dunne, Jessica Ernest, Jeff Gorti, Arian Keddell, Mary Claire King, Marty Lawson, Joseph London, Barrett Martin, Sharon Moore, Drew Nellessen, Denny Paschall, Khori Michele Petinaud, Angel Reda, Jermaine R. Rembert, Michael Scirrotto, and Colt Adam Weiss.

The revival of Chicago began life as one of the three annual Encores! presentations offered by City Center. The musical opened on Broadway at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in November 14, 1996, where it remained through February 1997. The musical transferred to the Shubert Theatre, and played that house through January 26, 2003. The revival reopened at the Ambassador Theatre January 29 that year.

Since its debut in 1996, Chicago has played in 36 countries and been seen by 33 million people worldwide. It is now the second-longest running show in Broadway history (after The Phantom of the Opera).

READ: How the Chicago Costumes Have Evolved Over 25 Years

With a book by the late Fred Ebb and Bob Fosse, music by John Kander, and lyrics by Ebb, Chicago features direction by Walter Bobbie, choreography by the late Ann Reinking, set design by John Lee Beatty, costume design by William Ivey Long, lighting design by Ken Billington, sound design by Scott Lehrer, and casting by Stewart/Whitley.

The current production, produced by Barry and Fran Weissler, won the Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical in 1997 as well as awards for actors Bebe Neuwirth and James Naughton, director Bobbie, lighting designer Billington, and Reinking. The original production was directed and choreographed by the late Fosse.

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