And the World Goes ꞌRound, the 1991 Off-Broadway revue of the music of John Kander and Fred Ebb, will be updated for a three-way co-production between ArtsCentic, Everyman Theatre, and Olney Theatre Center.
Directed by ArtsCentic Artistic Director Kevin S. McAllister, the production, now titled The World Goes 'Round, will launch April 19-May 21 at Maryland's Olney before playing Baltimore's Everyman June 6-July 2.
McAllister will also star, joined by Helen Hayes Award winners Nova Y. Payton (Ford’s Theatre’s Grace) and Natascia Diaz (Man of La Mancha, The Capeman) plus Karen Vincent and Harris Milgrim with swings Ben Clark and MaryKate Brouillet.
The World Goes ꞌRound, created by Scott Ellis, Susan Stroman, and David Thompson, featured songs from Chicago; Cabaret; The Rink; Flora, the Red Menace; and Woman of the Year. McAllister’s production includes, with permission, songs from Kander and Ebb’s post-1991 output like The Scottsboro Boys and Kiss of the Spider Woman.
Director and actor McAllister says, “I think younger folks who have really gotten into musical theatre since the advent of shows like Hamilton are going to be surprised at how much they can detect the influence of Kander and Ebb's work on the shows they love. Kander and Ebb were ahead of their time in their embrace of stories at the margins of society—the persecuted, the gender-fluid, the hustlers, and the incarcerated. There is factual history in their work. There is truth about the struggles of racism, equal pay, injustice, and empowerment. And, they made it all irresistibly entertaining with just the right mix of sentiment and world-wise cynicism. This production aims to celebrate these trailblazers by creating a new production that invites younger, more diverse audiences to enjoy the two masterminds whose creative works are still as controversial and popular as they were over 60 years ago."
The upcoming production will also have musical direction by Christopher Youstra, choreography by Shalyce Hemby, associate direction by Ashleigh King, set design by Daniel Etitnger, lighting design by Aja Jackson, costume design by Moyenda Kulemeka, projections design by Patrick Lord, and sound design by Matt Rowe. Clara Ash-Moore is the associate projections designer.
New York casting was handled by McCorkle Casting Ltd; Ben Walsh is the production stage manager.
Several songs penned by Kander and the late Ebb will also be featured in the new Broadway musical New York, New York, which will begin previews March 24 at the St. James.