Posted on December 2, 2011 at 5:20 pm
Kelli O’Hara to Star in ‘Bridges of Madison County’ Musical Workshop
By PATRICK HEALY
The director Bartlett Sher and the actress Kelli O’Hara, who collaborated previously on the Tony Award-winning revival of “South Pacific” and the musical “Light in the Piazza,” will reunite for a developmental workshop in New York this month of their latest project, “The Bridges of Madison County,” a musical adaptation of the best-selling novel and hit film. The Broadway producers Jeffrey Richards, Stacey Mindich and Jerry Frankel confirmed on Thursday that they were holding the workshop; no plans for a full production have been announced.
Ms. O’Hara, a Tony nominee for both shows with Mr. Sher as well as for “The Pajama Game,” will star as Francesca Johnson, an Iowa farm wife who has a brief love affair with a roaming photographer, Robert Kincaid. Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood played those roles in the 1995 film version of the 1992 novel by Robert James Waller. No other casting for the workshop was disclosed.
The composer Jason Robert Brown, a Tony winner for “Parade,” has written the score, and the Tony- and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Marsha Norman (“The Secret Garden,” “ ‘night, Mother”) has written the book.
Mr. Sher’s latest New York production, “Blood and Gifts,” opened Off Broadway to critical acclaim last week; he won the Tony for best director of a musical in 2008 for “South Pacific,” and he also directed the Broadway musical “Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown.”
His last Broadway-bound project, a revival of “Funny Girl,” fell apart in November due to financing problems.