The hit Broadway musical “Gypsy,” which is loosely based on the memoirs of a famous striptease artist known as Gypsy Rose Lee opens Friday, Jan. 27, and runs weekends through February at the Canyon Theatre Guild’s Old Town Newhall playhouse.
The story focuses on Gypsy’s mother, Rose, whose name has become synonymous with “the ultimate stage mother,” and follows Mama Rose and her daughters, June and Louise as they struggle to find success on the vaudeville circuit during the Great Depression.
With music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, and a book by Arthur Laurents, the show begins in the early 1920s and ends with Louise (who becomes known as Gypsy Rose Lee) becoming the star her mother always dreamed her younger daughter, June, would become.
Gypsy contains many songs that have become popular standards, including Small World, Some People, Everything’s Coming Up Roses, Let Me Entertain You and Rose’s Turn. Gypsy is frequently referred to as “the greatest American musical” by critics and writers. New York Times critic Clive Barnes said, “Gypsy is one of the best musicals…” and described Mama Rose as “one of the few truly complex characters in the American Musical.”
Lovers of musical theatre will love Gypsy! While the subject matter may not be appropriate for very young audiences, director Patti Finley stresses, “There will not be any actual nudity in the show. In fact, one of the things that made Gypsy Rose Lee such a phenomenon was that she never did “bare all.” She put the “tease” in “strip tease.”
Donna M. Manfredi makes her CTG debut as Momma Rose. The cast includes Lydia Botello and Kara Hayes as June, Fiona Perry and Valerie Aquilar as Louise and John Morris as Herbie. Cheri Bradford is Assistant Director, Kara Slocum is Vocal Director and Musette Caing is the choreographer. Jim Robinson and Frank Rock are designing the set, Jill McGlynn and Lynn McQuown are the costume designers, and Pat Robinson and Eleanor Mannion are set decorators.
Gypsy opens January 27 and plays Friday and Saturday evenings at 8 PM through February 26. There are Sunday matinees on February 5, 12, and 26. The Canyon Theatre Guild Playhouse is located at 24242 Main Street in Old Town Newhall. Make reservations through the box office 661-799-2702.