Words Words Words & Music opened Friday, August 24th, 2001 at Danny’s Skylight Room in New York City to unanimous praise from critics and cheering packed houses. It returned to Danny’s for a second sold out run beginning Sunday, October 21st, 2001. The show, its cast and creative team all enjoyed words of praise, awards and honors, including making several “Best of 2001” lists.
The cast reunited the following autumn of 2002 to record the show. You can hear clips from the forthcoming Original Cast Album at: WWW&M - CD
Shakespeare was a showman. Plain and simple. He knew the value of a song placed at just the right moment in his plays. You can find songs in many of his plays, and not just the comedies; there are musical moments in his tragedies and histories as well! And his words have inspired music in every discipline since. Throughout my career (okay, now I feel old), I've observed a standoff not unlike the Montagues and Capulets: Ranging in extremes from the wary glances of my legitimate, classical theatre, conservatory-trained, artist contemporaries when someone absent-mindedly hums a showtune - to the (not dissimilar) glazed-over, polite smile of a Broadway "gypsy" at the mention of anything Shakespearean.
The fact is that we all have more in common than we might think. We may be mamboing on opposite sides of the dance at the gym, but if someone would just flip a switch we might find that there is a swimming pool under the floor. . .
For me this past year has been an amazing amalgam of all disciplines, from cabaret to sword-swinging Shakespearean blood baths. I'm thankful for that, as it's certainly inspired this production! My heartfelt thanks to: Tom Rowan for getting the bard ball rolling, Jason Wynn for his amazing artistry and friendship, Antonio Pendones for his love and support of all my artistic endeavors and his fabulous contributions at GraphAct.com, Andy Gale and Mark Janas for maintaining that good acting and singing are not mutually exclusive, my dear classical theatre friends for their love and patience, the wonderful cabaret community for their warm embrace, this amazing cast of players from all disciplines who bravely took the dive into the pool with me, and to Ralph Carhart and Daniel Colb Rothman for entrusting me with the switch.
I think it was Shakepeare who said: "Come on in! The water's fine!"
WORDS WORDS WORDS OF PRAISE:
"Speaking of sold-out events . . . catch WORDS WORDS WORDS & MUSIC . . . presented by Revolving Shakespeare, New York's newest and hottest Classical Theatre company . . . I saw this show on Saturday and am going again tonight! It is fantastic fun for all! . . . the cast was simply unbelievable. The songs are from a number of sources including KISS ME KATE, THE BOYS FROM SYRACUSE, WEST SIDE STORY, ME AND JULIET, 'Romeo & Juliet' (the movie), SWINGIN' THE DREAM and even 'Gilligan's Island' . . . an amazingly talented and attractive cast that included some folks making their NYC debuts. The good news is that it will be returning soon for those who missed it . . . WHAT A GREAT SHOW!!!!!"
Stu Hamstra - Cabaret Hotline Online
"It is the best revue I've seen this year! See this amazing evening of theatrical cabaret! . . . Miles Phillips has taken the spoken word of Shakespeare and woven it with pop, classical and most importantly, Broadway music along with some highly choreographed moments and added delightful touches of humor, to achieve an intelligent and highly entertaining evening. It is completely satisfying and it has just been given the extension it needs to be eligible for a MAC Award, which it truly deserves . . . left me breathless . . . A MUST SEE!!!!!!!!!!!!"
Michael Nelsen - MN OnLine
"A creative, intensive work such as rarely seen in cabaret . . . full of laughs, wonderful songs and so much talent!!!! Some Broadway shows don't even have this much talent onstage. Again. . . you would have to pay mucho dollars for a show like this and sit in the boonies to see it . . . Believe me, this show is GREAT! . . . CONGRATULATIONS Miles Philips, your musical director Jason Wynn and all involved!!!!"
Michelle Russell - cabaretsingers
"It has a fabulous (and attractive!) cast of singing actors . . . in an eclectic and inventive program that blends brief snippets of the Bard (and this group handles their verse as well as they do their verses) with musical numbers with more range and diversity than you're likely to see on any cabaret stage . . . From the halls of Elsinore to a certain 'uncharted desert isle' (don't ask!), from ravishing arias to showtunes to a T-bone steak (don't ask!), from very witty dance numbers to a soaring vocal quintet . . . it's quite a ride."
Jeff Matson - jeffreymatson.com
THE TAMING OF THE SHREW
Brush Up Your Shakespeare - Kiss Me Kate - Company
Were Thine That Special Face - Kiss Me Kate - Rob
THE COMEDY OF ERRORS
Dear Old Syracuse - The Boys From Syracuse - David & Miles
(R. Rodgers & L. Hart)
Falling In Love With Love - The Boys From Syracuse - Dara
(R. Rodgers & L. Hart)
ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA
Aure, Deh, Per Pieta - Giulio Cesare - Parker
(G. F. Handel & H. Procter-Gregg)
TWO GENTLEMEN OF VERONA
Then To Silvia Let Us Sing - Two Gentlemen Of Verona - Jason
Fear No More - Cymbeline - Miles & Parker
Ave Maria - Otello - Stephanie
(G. Verdi & W. Ducloux)
THE WINTER'S TALE
Get You Hence - The Winter's Tale - Dara, Liz, Rob
ROMEO AND JULIET
Tonight - West Side Story - Stephanie & David
(L. Bernstein & S. Sondheim)
That's The Way It Happens - Me And Juliet - Dara & Parker
(R. Rodgers & O. Hammerstein II)
Somewhere - West Side Story - Stephanie & David
(L. Bernstein & S. Sondheim)
A Time For Us - Romeo & Juliet - Dara, Miles, Parker
(N. Rota, L. Kusik, E. Snyder)
I'm Russian . . . To The Lady I Love - Loves Labors Lost - Rob & Jason
A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM
Now The Hungry Lion Roars - A Midsummer Night's Dream - Company
Darn That Dream - Swingin' The Dream - Liz
(J. Van Heusen & E. De Lange)
TWELFTH NIGHT: OR WHAT YOU WILL
Twelfth Night Medley - Twelfth Night - Miles & Jason
(J. Wynn & J. House: translation)
Gilligan's Hamlet - Gilligan's Island - Stephanie, David & Parker
(G. Bizet & S. Schwartz)
Hamlet - Red Hot & Blue - Liz, Rob & Company
Book & Adaptation: Miles Phillips
New Arrangements: Jason Wynn & Miles Phillips
Vocal Orchestrations: Jason Wynn
Lyrics, unless otherwise credited: William Shakespeare
ALL THE MEN AND WOMEN:
Stephanie L. Bonte
(Desdemona/Ophelia/Juliet) moved to New York one year ago from Illinois where she received her Masters in Music from Illinois State University. Since then, she has performed in several new musical theatre productions throughout the New York City area, recently singing with Golden Fleece Opera, Opera Nova and at Queens Theatre in the Park. Her favorite roles include Philia in FUNNY THING..., Pamina in THE MAGIC FLUTE and Audrey in LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS. www.stephaniebonte.com
(Guildenstern/Helena) New York: POESCRYPT, COMPANY, DOVER WON'T GET OUT, and LEGAL TENDER. Regional: DAMN YANKEES, THE WHO'S TOMMY, SNOW WHITE, CHRISTMAS CAROL, LOVE COMICS, SON OF FIRE, OLYMPUS ON MY MIND, SWEENY TODD, EVITA, ANNIE, PERSONALS, DROOD, THE SOUND OF MUSIC, and CHICAGO. TV: "Law & Order," "Sex and the City." www.lizdonathan.com
(Rosencrantz/Petruchio) makes his New York debut with WORDS WORDS WORDS & MUSIC. Previous roles include Carl-Magnus - A LITTLE NUGHT MUSIC, El Gallo - THE FANTASTICKS, Pozzo - WAITING FOR GODOT, Roderigo - OTHELLO, Prince - CINDERELLA (Japan Tour), Ritchie Valens - BUDDY (2000 National Tour). Films: LIGHT IT UP, THE WATCHER. BA - San Jose State University.
(Dromio/Romeo/Hamlet) is a Californian beginning his third year in NYC. Recent performances include CRAZY FOR YOU at Westchester, BLOOMER GIRL at St. Clement's, and RUMPLESTILSKIN'S DAUGHTER with the Boys Choir of Harlem. Favorite regional roles are Puck - A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, Matt - THE FANTASTICKS, and the Emcee - CABARET.
(Director/Antipholus/Guiderius/Escalus/Feste) Recent NY/Regional: Feste - TWELFTH NIGHT, Beaufort/Edward IV - QUEEN MARGARET, Captain - THE SOUND OF MUSIC, Cliff - CABARET, Charlie - STRANGE INTERLUDE, Garry - NOISES OFF!, Mordred - CAMELOT (Drama-Logue Award). Film: KEEPERS, CAGED, K-PAX. Post-grad: ACT. Masters: NTC.
(Mark Antony/Arvirigus/Mercutio/Polonius) 2001 MAC Award Nominee for Best Pop Vocals - is thrilled to be returning to the words of William Shakespeare. He began his professional acting career as Lysander in A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM. Favorite roles include Archie in THE SECRET GARDEN and The Wolf / Prince in INTO THE WOODS. Parker's new one-man-show EYES FOLLOW will be presented at Don't Tell Mama in September 2001. www.parkerscott.com
(Adriana/Autolycus/Nurse) is currently performing in NYC with the cabaret ensemble "All Tuned Up" and in a play by Beverly Bonner, MANHATTAN TOWERS. This is her second Revolving Shakespeare adventure. NY credits include: STAGE BLOOD - Helga, A GLIMPSE OF THE LIGHT - Esther, QUEEN MARGARET - Clifford/Alencon/Horner. She received a BFA in Theatre Performance at the University of Michigan. www.dara.biz
(Musical Director/Proteus/Laertes) is excited to be part of this new company and thrilled to be working with such talented people. Jason often alternates between acting: LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS - Seymour, AN EVENING WITH GILBERT & SULLIVAN - Tenor, THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE - Major-General, and music direction: Tom Rowan's TWELFTH NIGHT, for which he composed the music, and Berlin To Broadway with Kurt Weill, for which he received the 2000 OOBR Award.