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CAROUSEL is the talk of Chicago!

If the rave reviews weren't enough, the acclaimed cast and creative team of Carousel are making their way around Chicago, whether it's on TV or at a Cubs game. Don't miss your chance to see this amazing production. This Carousel must move on May 3!

If the rave reviews weren't enough, the acclaimed cast and creative team of Carousel are making their way around Chicago, whether it's on TV or at a Cubs game. Don't miss your chance to see this amazing production. This Carousel must move on May 3!

The entire cast and director/choreographer Rob Ashford were interviewed on WCIU's "You and Me This Morning" about starting the rehearsal process:

;

Jenn Gambatese, who plays the irrepressible Carrie Pipperidge, performed “Mr. Snow” on ABC 7’s  Windy City Live and gave away some tickets to lucky audience members:

ABC 7's Janet Davies interviewed the incomparable Charlotte d'Amboise and Tony Roberts about their illustrious careers and current roles in Carousel:

Mr. and Mrs. Snow—Jenn Gambatese and Matthew Hydzik—went on  WTTW's Chicago Tonight  to talk with host Phil Ponce about the show and performed "When the Children Are Asleep."

 

Matthew also performed another one of Enoch's signature songs, "In a Manner of Speaking," his ode to his plans for a big sardine factory…and a big family:

 

Jarrod Emick, who plays everyone's favorite bad boy Jigger Craigin, sang the National Anthem at the April 14 Cubs game. 

 

Denyce Graves and Matthew Hydzik visited WGN Radio's Andrea Darlas for an in-depth conversation about preparing for Carousel. Tony Roberts also stopped by WGN Radio to talk with Bob Sirott and Marianne Murciano.

Michigan Ave magazine interviewed and photographed the cast of Carousel.

CS magazine interviewed Steven Pasquale about his dream role of Billy Bigelow. 

The Chicago Tribune's Chris Jones interviewed director Rob Ashford about the show and speculated on whether it is Broadway bound. Carousel stars Steven Pasquale and Laura Osnes also recorded a special version of "The Bench Scene" for the Tribune's Theater Loop Showcase video series

Hedy Weiss of the Chicago Sun-Times talked with Ashford and stars Steven Pasquale and Laura Osnes.

Tony Roberts also reflected on his career and talked about his upcoming memoir in this profile in the Chicago Sun-Times.

Photo credits:
  • Steven Pasquale in CS magazine
  • Jarrod Emick performs at Wrigley Field
  • Laura Osnes, Jenn Gambatese, and Steven Pasquale in Michigan Ave
  • Jenn Gambatese and Matthew Hydzik on Chicago Tonight
 

Critics can’t get enough of CAROUSEL

Lyric's new production of Carousel is one of the most celebrated productions of the year. It's the toast of Chicago…and could it be the toast of New York? Hear what the critics have to say about this stunning production that's worthy of Broadway. Don't miss your chance to take a ride on this Carousel before it closes on May 3. 

Lyric's new production of Carousel  is one of the most celebrated productions of the year. It's the toast of Chicago…and could it be the toast of New York? Hear what the critics have to say about this stunning production that's worthy of Broadway. Don't miss your chance to take a ride on this Carousel before it closes on May 3. 

 

★★★★ - Chicago Tribune

"A chance to hear this cherished score delivered with such ample vocal and musical resources should not be missed by anyone who remains entranced by the unique appeal of the great Broadway musicals." - The New York Times

"profoundly moving" - Chicago Tribune

"by far the best of the opera company's annual spring forays into the beloved Rodgers and Hammerstein canon." - Chicago Tribune

"Musically and visually, Lyric's Carousel is an unabashed pleasure…"
- Time Out Chicago

"This really is a gorgeous new production....Aside from the huge vocal performances by the likes of Laura Osnes, Steven Pasquale, and Denyce Graves, what really impresses here is the richness of the storytelling, and more important yet, the depth of the emotional connection between Julie Jordan and her no-good louse of a husband, Billy Bigelow. This is a world-class Carousel, spinning right here in Chicago." -  CBS 2

"director/choreographer Rob Ashford's seductive, unsentimental yet darkly compelling production...comes about as close to perfect as it gets." - Daily Herald

"...it’s a familiar tale of love, loss and forgiveness that has found its way into our hearts and Lyric’s production only affixes it further." - Make It Better

"… in bold and creative ways, this 'Carousel' … reaches literally for the stars and frequently attains them, bringing innovate ideas and the personnel to implement them to a production that is huge, audaciously daring, and bracingly human. And yes, one that is immediately legendary." - Broadway World

"under Rob Ashford's sublime direction, Lyric Opera of Chicago's production is a Carousel for the ages. " - Huffington Post

Praise for "the grandeur of the massive sets, the spectacle of the dances... and the sheer power of a cast of five dozen insanely talented folks walking an expansive stage, telling a timeless tale while singing songs loved by generations of Americans." - Broadway World

"[Ashford's] vision offers a grandly majestic, operatic sweep overflowing with wonderful characters and inventive, athletic choreography." - Chicago Theatre Review

"Come to the 'Carousel.' You need to get your ticket punched, to catch a ride on your very own life, and to do so in the most unforgettable way you can imagine. And you'll never walk alone." - Broadway World

"Lyric's Carousel is beautiful and heart melting" - Chicago Parent

"stunning and breathtaking from start to finish" - Around the Town Chicago

Carousel is "as near perfect as possible" - Chicago Critic

"Lyric Opera of Chicago is on a roll with its scintillating new production of the iconic 1945 musical 'Carousel.'" - Lake County Journal

The dream cast

"Stacked with Broadway stars and cast with uncommon consistency and shrewdness, Ashford's production appears directed with Broadway in mind and, well, New York should be so lucky." - Chicago Tribune

"The results are impressive: The production is as beautifully sung — and beautifully played, by the Lyric orchestra under the conductor David Chase — as anything on Broadway right now" - The New York Times

"Steven Pasquale and Laura Osnes are delivering career-defining star turns as doomed lovers Billy Bigelow and Julie Jordan.…The pairing…already feels like a legendary Broadway coupling. Now someone just needs to actually get them on Broadway. Soon, please." - Broadway.com 

Steven Pasquale "brings the first act to an electrifying climax with his powerful rendering of 'Soliloquy'" - The New York Times

Steven Pasquale "has it all going on" - Chicago Tribune

"Pasquale brings a Brando-esque quality to Billy" - Chicago Sun-Times

"Pasquale's take on Billy's eight-minute solo 'Soliloquy' is downright transcendent"
- Time Out Chicago

Steven Pasquale gives "a breathtaking turn as a handsome young punk you want to root for in spite of yourself" - Chicago on the Aisle

"Laura Osnes is a superb Julie—at once tough and fragile, independent and vulnerable." - Chicago Reader

Laura Osnes "offers a very striking window into Julie's determination to separate from her peers, manifest vocally through the exciting crescendo she constructs for such famous lyrics as 'Round in circles I'd go,' where the resilience in the musical swell undermines the lyrical expression of doubt" - Chicago Tribune

"Osnes' delicacy, vulnerability and spine are lovely throughout"
 - Chicago Sun-Times

"Osnes…gives us a Julie Jordan that is fragile and wounded even as she's independent." - Talkin' Broadway

Jenn Gambatese "who made a playful Maria in Lyric's Sound of Music last spring, is an effusive delight as Julie's love-drunk friend Carrie Pipperidge"
- Time Out Chicago

Matthew Hydzik's "soaring voice and determined spirit are spot-on"
 - Chicago Sun-Times 

Denyce Graves is "spectacular" - Chicago Tribune

Jarrod Emick "makes bad-boy Jigger Craigin another one of his characterizations that is both a dynamite singer and an imposing physical presence."
 - Broadway World

Charlotte d'Amboise is "an extraordinary dancer and actor whose every move's a marvel" - Chicago on the Aisle 

Tony Roberts gives "an avuncular but unsentimental turn as the Starkeeper" - Chicago Tribune

The breathtaking ballet 

"Ashford's staging of the Act II ballet is an assured thrill" - Time Out Chicago

"Among the production's most glorious scenes is the second act ballet"
- Chicago Sun-Times

"Ashford's choreography here is suffused with deep emotional intensity, and Simon dances so beautifully, the quality of her acting in the crucial final encounter with her father is a bonus, but a crucial one all the same." - Chicago Tribune

"Ashford's version is more like a fever dream for Billy, who walks through its action and can't quite believe the horrors that appear before him. …what a creative way to conceive of the entire sequence!" - Broadway World

Ashford "has intensified the role of ballet in the show...drama, song, orchestral music, dance, and design are fused into a total theater experience." - Chicago Reader

"How wonderful that Director Rob Ashford choreographed all-new pieces for Lyric Opera's new production of Carousel. And better yet that the dancers—Abigail Simon as Louise, Martin Harvey as her Carnival Boy partner, Charlotte D'Amboise as the nightmare image of Mrs. Mullin—and the entire dance ensemble gave flawless performances." - Chicago-Splash.com 

The transcendent music 

"With its magnificent revival of 'Carousel,' Lyric Opera of Chicago has accomplished what few other theaters ever will, which is to showcase the grand and glorious score by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein with a full complement of strings, woodwinds and brass most theatergoers are unlikely to hear outside an opera house or symphony hall." - Daily Herald

"it is wonderful to hear Rodgers's rich score delivered by an opera-company chorus and orchestra under David Chase's baton." - Chicago Reader

"[U]nder David Chase's assured baton, the Lyric's orchestra mines all the magic in this lilting score. " - Huffington Post

"The music is divine" - Around the Town Chicago

"This Carousel employs a lush 37-piece orchestra and a raft of ensemble singers, rendering Rodgers's rich score with exquisite care" - Time Out Chicago

The stunning visuals 

"[The] hypnotic production design by Paolo Ventura elevates the dreamlike and otherworldly aspects of this heartbreaking love story." - Huffington Post

"the design from the Italian artist Paolo Ventura … is strikingly lean, dominated by miniaturized vistas that feel more picayune European than puritan New England, and suggesting, as profoundly and existentially as any of the scores of productions of this work I've seen, the transitory nature of any happiness you can find at a traveling carnival in the company of one who barks for a living." - Chicago Tribune

"The set by Paolo Ventura is amazingly real with the opening number's actual carousel appearing as if it was transported from a museum to the stage on Wacker Drive." - Around the Town Chicago

"Another risk for Ashford that pays off is the contribution of Paolo Ventura, an artist and photographer making his theatrical debut as set designer. His settings have a water-color feel reminiscent of some of Edward Hopper's work."
- Talkin' Broadway 

"Tony Award-winning costume and lighting designers Catherine Zuber and Neil Austin work with a variety of silhouettes and colors to highlight and deepen the visual attention." - Broadway World

Don't wait - Carousel will be gone in less than three weeks! 
This limited-engagement musical runs only through May 3. BUY YOUR TICKETS today!

 

Photo credits:

  • Carousel production photos credit Todd Rosenberg and Robert Kusel for Lyric Opera of Chicago
 

You asked, they answered! Q&A with our CAROUSEL cast

The brand-new production of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel  at Lyric Opera of Chicago is just about two weeks away! While you're counting down to our April 10 opening, be sure to read more about how the dream cast is preparing for this incredible show. 

 
The Carousel dream cast: Matthew Hydzik, Steven Pasquale, Jenn Gambatese, Laura Osnes, and Jarrod Emick (top l-r)

The brand-new production of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel  at Lyric Opera of Chicago is just about two weeks away! While you're counting down to our April 10 opening, be sure to read more about how the cast is preparing for their roles. Steven Pasquale, Laura Osnes, Jenn Gambatese, Matthew Hydzik, Denyce Graves, and Jarrod Emick all took a moment out of their incredibly busy rehearsal schedule to answer these questions from their social media followers.

Want to see more exclusive content? Be sure to follow Lyric on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest so you don't miss a moment.

 

 

Captains and Marias Galore!

Broadway star Jenn Gambatese and Hollywood hunk Billy Zane are anchoring Lyric's critically acclaimed production of The Sound of Music as Maria and Captain von Trapp. However, they are just the latest in a long line of talented actors to fill these iconic roles. Here are a few of the other famous (and unexpected!) actors who have taken on the challenge.

Broadway star Jenn Gambatese and Hollywood hunk Billy Zane are anchoring Lyric's critically acclaimed production of The Sound of Music as Maria and Captain von Trapp. However, they are just the latest in a long line of talented actors to fill these iconic roles. Everyone knows about Mary Martin and Theodore Bikel (who created the roles on Broadway), Julie Andrew and Christopher Plummer (who starred in the film), and Carrie Underwood, and Stephen Moyer (who were the headliners in NBC's recent live broadcast). But here are a few of the other famous (and unexpected!) actors who have taken on The Sound of Music on Broadway, for recordings, and even in high school musicals.

Florence Henderson - This future Brady Bunch star was Maria in the national touring production of The Sound of Music  in 1961-1962. Here she is performing the title song at the 1971 Tony Awards:

 

And in this interview, she talks about her experience with the touring company and how she idolized Mary Martin:

 

Shirley Jones - Not just another TV mom, Shirley Jones is a Rodgers and Hammerstein stalwart, having starred in the screen adaptations of both Oklahoma! and Carousel. She took on Maria in 1966 for the Westbury Music Fair. Here she is singing the title song from The Bell Telephone Hour series:

 

Laura Benanti and Richard Chamberlain - You might have seen her as Elsa Schraeder in NBC's recent live production, but Tony winner Laura Benanti already had a long history with the musical. She was the understudy for Rebecca Luker's Maria in the original cast of the 1998 Broadway revival. She would take over the role at age 19 with legendary actor Richard Chamberlain as Captain von Trapp, who was 65 going on 66 at the time.

Mare Winningham and Kevin Spacey - She played Maria to Kevin Spacey's Captain von Trapp in a production at Chatsworth High School in California's San Fernando Valley during Spacey's senior year (1976-77). Here the two of them are in the production, and Spacey recently mentioned the role during an interview on Sunday Morning on CBS.

Petula Clark - Best known as the voice of swinging London with such hits as "Downtown" and "I Know a Place," Petula Clark starred in the 1981 West End revival. Here she is singing "Do Re Mi" with the von Trapp children during a rehearsal:

 

Debby Boone - This Grammy winner lit up the stage (and our lives!) as Maria in Lincoln Center's 30th anniversary revival of the show in 1990.

Frederica von Stade - She took on Maria for a recorded version released by Telarc in 1987 with the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra. And playing the Mother Abbess? Eileen Farrell!

Photo credits

  • Billy Zane and Jenn Gambatese in Lyric's production of The Sound of Music (credit Todd Rosenberg / Lyric Opera of Chicago)
  • Debby Boone in The Sound of Music (credit Carol Rosegg / Martha Swope Associates)
  • Richard Chamberlain and Laura Benanti in The Sound of Music (credit Sara Krulwich / New York Times)
  • Kevin Spacey and Mare Winningham in The Sound of Music (courtesy KevinSpacey.com)

(Lyric Opera of Chicago does not own copyrights to any of the above videos.) 

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