The universal language of the blues "speaks eloquently in this scorching, Tony-nominated musical! The twenty-six hot, torchy numbers that tell the sweet, sexy and sorrowful stories of four colorful inhabitants of a 1930s Chicago saloon, will leave audiences energized, inspired and ready to wail. This dynamite revue features blues classics from Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman, Bessie Smith and many more, packed into a larger-than-life score that’ll bring down the house!"
The play was conceived and originally directed by Sheldon Epps with original Vocal Arrangements and Musical Direction by Chapman Roberts and Orchestrations and Additional Vocal Arrangements by Sy Johnson. The show will be directed by Megan O’Brien, who returns to The Rep after having directed The Bomb-itty of Errors during the 2010/11 Season, and will feature a group of talented actor/singer/musicians: Carl Clemons-Hopkins (The Man/Tenor Sax/Bass), Zonya Love (The Lady), Halle Morse (The Girl/Percussion/Washboard) and Lili Thomas (The Woman/Trumpet/Trombone). Associate Artist Dan Kazemi is the Music Director for this production and will provide piano and clarinet accompaniment. Patrick Morrow, a frequent Rep collaborator, also joins the cast in the orchestra and will be playing drums, percussion, guitar and bass. Blues in the Night runs in the Stackner Cabaret from October 19 – December 23, and opens Sunday, October 21.
“Blues in the Night is a great celebration of singers and dancers kicking back and doing what they do at their very best,” says Artistic Director Mark Clements. “Our take on the piece – utilizing actor/singer/musicians as the cast – will hopefully prove original and innovative. This will definitely be one of those shows where we lift the roof off the Stackner Cabaret!”
“One of the most exciting things about this cast is that they are so multi-talented,” added Director Megan O’Brien. “They are great singers and actors and they also play instruments – but above all, they are storytellers. They are able to accurately portray the stories of the blues music in the show while giving the stories new life. I’m looking forward to the rehearsal process and I can't wait to see what they bring to the table!”
Blues in the Night was originally staged at the Off-Broadway Playhouse 46 by Sheldon Epps and Gregory Hines (under the supervision of Norman René). The show ran March 26 to May 11, 1980 for 51 performances. Blues in the Night later reopened on Broadway at the Rialto Theatre on June 2, 1982 and was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Musical.