Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

Tam Mutu, Kelli Barrett, Tom Hewitt, Paul Nolan, Lora Lee Gayer, Melody Butiu, Julian Cihi and More Set for Broadway Bound Doctor Zhivago

Tam Mutu

Tam Mutu

Tam Mutu, making his Broadway debut as the passionate Doctor and poet Yurii Zhivago, Kelli Barrett (Wicked), Tony Award nominee Tom Hewitt (Rocky Horror Show), and Paul Nolan (Jesus Chris Superstar), will be joined by Lora Lee Gayer as Tonia Gromeko, Zhivago’s devoted wife, in the new Broadway musical Doctor Zhivago. Based on Boris Pasternak’s Nobel Prize-winning 20th-century epic Russian masterpiece, the cast of Doctor Zhivago features Jacqueline Antaramian and Jamie Jackson, with Heather Botts, Wendi Bergamini, Melody Butiu, Josh Canfield, Julian Cihi, Briana Carlson-Goodman, Bradley Dean, Michael Brian Dunn, Drew Foster, Kira Guloien, Robert Hager, Ericka Hunter, Denis Lambert, David McDonald, Joseph Medeiros, Pilar Millhollen, Gary Milner, Spencer Moses, Julius Sermonia, Jacob L. Smith and Jesse Wildman in a cast of 32.

Michael Weller. Photo by Lia Chang

Michael Weller. Photo by Lia Chang

Doctor Zhivago will begin performances on Friday, March 27, 2015, and open on Tuesday, April 21, 2015, at 6:30pm, at the Broadway Theatre (1681 Broadway). Doctor Zhivago is directed by two-time Tony Award winner Des McAnuff (Jersey Boys), with a book by Academy Award nominee Michael Weller (Ragtime), music by Grammy Award winner and Tony Award nominee Lucy Simon (The Secret Garden), lyrics by Tony Award nominee Michael Korie (Grey Gardens) and Emmy Award nominee Amy Powers (Ella Enchanted), and choreography by Tony Award nominee Kelly Devine (Rocky).

Tam Mutu (Yurii Zhivago), who will star as Stone in The Donmar Warhouse’s production of City Of Angels this winter, was recently seen as Javert in LES MISERABLES (Queen’s Theatre), and has theater credits that include Love Never Dies (Adelphi Theatre), Orange Peel (Royal Court), Royal Hunt of the Sun and Love’s Labour’s Lost (National Theatre), East (Leicester Haymarket), Romeo and Juliet and King Lear (RSC), As You Like It (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Dr. Faustus (Headlong Theatre Company) and Anatoly in Chess at the Princess of Wales Theatre in Toronto. Tam’s television credits include “Waking the Dead” and “Footballer’s Wives.”

Kelli Barrett

Kelli Barrett

Kelli Barrett will star as Lara Guishar, Yurii’s paramour. Kelli’s Broadway credits include Wicked (Nessarose), The Royal Family (Gwen) and Baby It’s You! (Mary-Jane). Off-Broadway: Rock of Ages (original Sherrie), On Your Toes (Frankie) at Encores! Regional theater work includes productions at the York, Williamstown, New York Stage & Film, Old Globe, WBT, Cincy Playhouse, St. Louis Rep and Prince. Selected Film and TV credits include The Switch, Remember Me, Confessions of a Shopaholic, Mr. Popper’s Penguins, “Blue Bloods”, “NCIS”, “L&O:SVU”, “Person of Interest”, “Gifted Man”, “Ugly Betty”, “The Good Wife” and recurring roles on “I Just Want My Pants Back” (Jane) and “Chicago Fire”(Renee Whaley). She and Tony nominee Jarrod Spector (currently starring in Beautiful) were recently wed in New York City

Tom Hewitt

Tom Hewitt

Viktor Komarovsky, the powerful aristocrat, will be played by Tony Award-nominee Tom Hewitt. Tom’s Broadway credits include Pilate in Jesus Christ Superstar, Billy Flynn in Chicago, Dracula in Dracula: The Musical, Frank N Furter in The Rocky Horror Show (Tony, Drama Desk nominations), The Boys from Syracuse, The Lion King, School for Scandal, and The Sisters Rosenzweig. National Tours include Urinetown, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (Touring Broadway Award) and Peter Pan. Off Broadway: Treasure Island, Jeffery, Beau Jest (Outer Critics nomination), Richard III, Othello. Regional Credits: Amazing Grace; Irma Vep; Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, Zhivago and Dracula: The Musical (La Jolla Playhouse); Kiss Me, Kate; Private Lives and Travesties (Long Wharf, CT Critics Circle Award); Compleat Female Stage Beauty (Old Globe); Uncle Vanya (Arena Stage); Racing Demon and Blithe Spirit (Guthrie); Antony and Cleopatra (Shakespeare Theater). TV/Film: “Law and Order,” “Third Watch,” “Frasier,” “All My Children,” and Fools’ Fire.

Paul Nolan

Paul Nolan

Paul Nolan will star as the political revolutionary, Pasha Antipov. Paul can currently be seen as Guy in Once on Broadway, having last been seen as Jesus in the 2012 revival of Jesus Christ Superstar. He originated that role at The Stratford Festival of Canada where he was also seen as Cousin Kevin in The Who’s Tommy, Tony in West Side Story, Orlando in As You Like It and Al Joad in The Grapes Of Wrath. Last year San Diego audiences saw him as Ben Nickel in the World Premiere of Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots at the La Jolla Playhouse conceived and directed by Des McAnuff and Wayne Coyne of the Flaming Lips. Also in the United States he was Radames in Aida at Kansas City Starlight. His film and TV credits include Will, “Something’s Coming,” Alex and Schumacher.

Lora Lee Gayer

Lora Lee Gayer

Lora Lee Gayer was most recently seen on Broadway in Follies as Young Sally, opposite Bernadette Peters. Off-Broadway credits include Pipe Dream at Encores!, and These Seven Sicknesses at EPBB. Regional credits include Millie in Bull Durham (Alliance); Philia in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (Shakespeare Theater-Helen Hayes nomination); Young Sally in Follies (Kennedy Center, Ahmanson); Gloria Thorpe in Damn Yankees (Goodspeed); Carrie in Carousel (Virginia Opera); Barrington; MUNY; KC Starlight; and Bay Street. Graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy and Carnegie Mellon University.

Melody Butiu

Melody Butiu

Melody Butiu, currently appearing as Estrella in the World Premiere of David Byrne and Fat Boy Slim’s critically acclaimed Here Lies Love, is making her Broadway debut with Dr. Zhivago. Regional World Premieres include – Land of Smiles, The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow (Pulitzer Prize nominated, AriZoni award for Best Actress in a Play), Shipwrecked! (by Donald Margulies, starring Gregory Itzin), Long Season (Perseverance Theatre in Alaska), A Perfect Wedding (Kirk Douglas Theatre), Dogeaters (La Jolla Playhouse). She has also appeared in productions of Helen (Getty Villa), Nightmare Alley (Geffen Playhouse), Calligraphy (Playwrights’ Arena), A Winter People (Theatre @ Boston Court), The Theory of Everything (Singapore Rep and East West Players), Celebration of The Lizard (San Diego Rep), BOY (La Jolla Playhouse), A Little Night Music (East West Players), Long Story Short (San Diego Rep), 36 Views (Geva/Portland Center Stage/Laguna Playhouse), HAIR (Reprise!), and Golden Child (EWP). Film/TV: Untold, Blood Ransom, “NCIS,” “Harry’s Law,” “True Blood,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Modern Family.” www.melodybutiu.com

Six Questions for Melody Butiu, Currently Appearing as Estrella in David Byrne and Fat Boy Slim’s Here Lies Love at The Public

Doctor Zhivago will feature scenic design by Michael Scott-Mitchell (Wagner’s Ring Cycle), costume design by five-time Tony Award nominee Paul Tazewell (Memphis), lighting design by Tony Award winner Howell Binkley (Jersey Boys), sound design by Tony Award winner SCK Sound Design (700 Sundays), projection design by Sean Nieuwenhuis (Jesus Christ Superstar), orchestrations by Danny Troob, music arrangements by Eric Stern, with musical direction and supervision by Ron Melrose. Doctor Zhivago will be produced on Broadway by Anita Waxman, Tom Dokton, Latitude Link, Ted Hartley/RKO Stage and Chunsoo Shin, with Margo and Roger Coleman, Joe Corcoran, J. Todd Harris, Stage Entertainment USA, Inc., Broadway Across America, Grove Entertainment, The Shubert Organization, The Pelican Group, Ahmos Hassan and John Frost. Junkyard Dog Productions is the executive producer of Doctor Zhivago.

Doctor Zhivago is an epic romance, revolving around the search for love during the final days of Czarist Russia, the First World War and the chaos of the Russian revolution. Raised as an aristocrat, Zhivago is a political idealist, physician and poet whose life is tossed by the tides of history as he is torn between a life with his devoted wife, Tonia Gromeko and the passionate and mysterious Lara Guishar. Zhivago however, is not alone in his yearnings for Lara, and must compete with both revolutionaries and aristocracy alike to win the heart of the woman he cannot live without. Doctor Zhivago celebrates the strength of love and art, in the face of political oppression and revolution.

Tickets for Doctor Zhivago are now on sale through Telecharge.com (212-239-6200) and are available for performances from Friday, March 27, 2015, through Thursday, March 31, 2016. Tickets range from $42.50 – $145.00 (include $2 Facilities Fee). For groups of 10 or more visit Telecharge.com/groups or to order by phone, call 800-432-7780. The playing schedule for Doctor Zhivago is as follows: Tuesday through Saturday at 8pm, Sunday at 7:30pm with matinees Saturday and Sunday at 2pm. Beginning April 27 the playing schedule will be: Tuesday and Thursday at 7pm, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday at 8pm, with matinees Wednesday and Saturday at 2pm and Sunday at 3pm. Please note: There will be special performances Sunday, March 29 at 3pm, Sunday, April 19 at 3pm, Monday, April 20 at 8pm, and there will be no performances Saturday, March 28 at 2pm, Sunday March 29 at 2pm or 7:30pm, Sunday, April 19 at 2pm or 7:30pm, or Wednesday, April 22.

For more information visit: www.doctorzhivagobroadway.com

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Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Lia Chang Photo by GK

Lia Chang Photo by GK

Lia Chang is an actor, a performance and fine art botanical photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. Lia starred as Carole Barbara in Lorey Hayes’ Power Play at the 2013 National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., with Pauletta Pearson Washington, Roscoe Orman, and made her jazz vocalist debut in Rome Neal’s Banana Puddin’ Jazz “LADY” at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in New York. She is profiled in Jade Magazine.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2014 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at liachangpr@gmail.com

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