A New New Year Spectacular!
Produced by Harriet Newman Leve and Jennifer Isaacson
About the Work:
Shiri Levine, a Jewish widow in her late forties, tries to stay connected to her faith, the memory of her husband, and her place in the world even as her world slips increasingly out of her control. A new romance feels like an insult to her late husband, Abe. Her grown (and still single) daughter, Tamarah, who never took an interest in Judaism or her father’s cantorial work when she was younger, now wants to abandon her dreams of a life in New York City and the theatre. And God is no longer listening. Of course, Shiri is no longer praying.
The setting of this musical play is an audition room in a conservative temple in upstate New York where Shiri is trying to revive the annual New Year Spectacular that was central to Abe’s work and symbolic of their relationship.
I play Frank O'Shaughnessy, token goy, who comes to audition for the spectacular. Dressed as Barbra Streisand. And singing Don't Rain On My Parade. With back-up singers. There's a little more that happens with—or through—Frank, but that's enough to get your attention, right? It got mine.
Rinne Groff, writer
Harriet Newman Leve, Ron Nicynski, C. Michèle Kaplan, original conception
Leigh Silverman, director
Larry Yurman, musical director
Roy Gabay, general manager
Lori Amondson, stage manager
CJ Thom, assistant stage manager
Rachel Hoffman/Telsey + Co., casting
Suzanne Toren, Yiddish consultant
Courtney Balan Tamarah
Derrick Baskin Leon
Stephen Bogardus Jonathan
Katie Foster stage directions
David Rossmer Rabi Samuels
Barbara Walsh Shiri
Lenny Wolpe Manny
Larry Yurman, piano
Danny Taylor, drums