For Immediate Release
October 19, 2022
Contact: Jim Byk / Kelly Guiod / Louisa Pancoast
Casting Announced for
The Sound of Music
Music by Richard Rodgers
Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
Book by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse
Suggested by The Trapp Family Singers by Maria Augusta Trapp
Music Directed by Meg Zervoulis
Choreographed by Kenny Ingram
Directed by Mark S. Hoebee
December 2, 2022 – January 1, 2023
at Paper Mill Playhouse
(October 19, 2022 – Millburn, NJ) – Paper Mill Playhouse (Mark S. Hoebee, Producing Artistic Director; Michael Stotts, Managing Director), recipient of the 2016 Regional Theatre Tony Award, has announced casting for The Sound of Music, directed by Mark S. Hoebee.
The production will feature Ashley Blanchet (Paper Mill’s Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella, Broadway’s Waitress) as Maria Rainer, Graham Rowat (Broadway’s Dear Evan Hansen, Sunset Boulevard) as Captain Georg von Trapp, Cáitlín Burke (The Sound of Music national tour) as Mother Abbess, Emily Borromeo (Broadway’s School of Rock, The Prom first national tour) as Elsa Schraeder, Gavin Lee (Paper Mill’s Beauty and the Beast, Broadway’s SpongeBob SquarePants) as Max Detweiler, Analise Scarpaci (Broadway’s Mrs. Doubtfire, Matilda) as Liesl von Trapp, Andrew Alstat as Rolf Gruber (Grease at Cape Playhouse, The Sound of Music at the Muny), Stacia Fernandez (Paper Mill’s Beauty and the Beast, Broadway’s Mamma Mia!) as Frau Schmidt, Christopher Gurr (Paper Mill’s The Sting, Broadway’s Kinky Boots) as Herr Zeller, Paul Slade Smith (Broadway’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, My Fair Lady) as Franz, and Mark Banik (Beautiful first national tour) as Admiral von Schreiber.
The von Trapp children will be played by Coleman Simmons (age 14, from West Orange, NJ) as Friedrich, Jacey Sink (age 12, from Summit, NJ) as Louisa, Cody Braverman (age 10, from Short Hills, NJ) as Kurt, Tara Rajan (age 9, from Sands Point, NY) as Brigitta, Austin Elle Fisher (age 9, from Tinton Falls, NJ) as Marta, Charlotte Sydney Harrington (age 7, from Shelton, CT) as Gretl, and standbys Charlotte Ewing (age 11, from Chatham, NJ) and Ethan Joseph (age 12, from Somerset, NJ).
The ensemble cast will feature Griffin Binnicker, Dean Cestari, Brittany Conigatti, Nick Davis, Vincent DiPeri, Madeleine Doherty, Eric Michael Gillett, Gina Hanzlik, Katie Horner, Mary Illes, Meredith Lustig, Kate Mazza, Christine Price, Chandler Reeves, Emily Royer, Kayleen Seidl, Ariana Valdes, and Kai B. White.
The show will begin performances at Paper Mill Playhouse on Friday, December 2 and play through Sunday, January 1, 2023. Opening night is set for Sunday, December 4.
Celebrate the holidays with the heart-soaring melodies of The Sound of Music, including such beloved gems as “My Favorite Things,” “Edelweiss,” and “Climb Ev’ry Mountain.” Directed by Paper Mill Producing Artistic Director Mark S. Hoebee, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s final musical conjures an Austria replete with rolling hills, singing nuns, and a tender love story, set in the shadow of World War II.
Directed by Paper Mill’s Producing Artistic Director Mark S. Hoebee, The Sound of Music features music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, and a book by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse. Kenny Ingram (Paper Mill’s Songs for a New World, A Jolly Holiday and Dreamgirls) returns to choreograph, alongside Meg Zervoulis (Broadway’s Funny Girl and 2020 West Side Story revival) as music director and conductor.
The Sound of Music will feature scenic design by Kelly James Tighe (PMP’s Songs for a New World and Jolly Holiday), based on original scenic design by James Fouchard (PMP’s Kiss Me, Kate and Grease); costume design by Leon Dobkowski (PMP’s Annie, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike), based on original costume design by Tony Award winner Catherine Zuber (Broadway’s Mrs. Doubtfire, Moulin Rouge!); lighting design by Charlie Morrison (PMP’s On Your Feet!, Sister Act); sound design by Sun Hee Kil (Suffs at The Public, Broadway’s Choir Boy); and hair and wig design by Jimmy Goode (The Public’s As You Like It, Suffs). Gary Mickelson serves as Production Stage Manager. Casting is by Nora Brennan Casting, CSA.
Paper Mill Playhouse offers its audiences the opportunity to enhance their theater experience with behind-the-scenes views of mainstage productions, including Q&A with the cast. Paper Mill Prologues and The Director’s Viewpoint will be available to everyone on the Paper Mill Playhouse mobile app.
Tickets start at $35 may be purchased by calling 973.376.4343, at the Paper Mill Playhouse Box Office at 22 Brookside Drive in Millburn, or online at papermill.org. Groups of 10 or more may receive up to a up to 30% discount on tickets and should call 973.376.4343. Students may purchase $20 tickets. Patrons under 30 years old may purchase tickets for $30 to any performance. Three-show and four-show subscription packages are also available starting at just $111.
Paper Mill Playhouse offers award-winning access programs and services, including audio-described performances on Saturday December 17, 2022, 1:30pm and Sunday December 18, 2022, 1:30pm (sensory seminars for the blind are held at noon) and an open-captioned performance on Sunday December 18, 2022, 7:00pm. Braille and large-print programs and assistive listening devices are available.
Programs, dates, and artists are subject to change.
PAPER MILL PLAYHOUSE, recipient of the 2016 Regional Theatre Tony Award, is a nationally renowned not-for-profit theater under the direction of Mark S. Hoebee (Producing Artistic Director) and Michael Stotts (Managing Director). A beloved New Jersey arts institution since 1938, Paper Mill creates and produces groundbreaking new musicals and reimagined classics. Several productions have gone on to Broadway and launched national tours, including Disney’s Newsies, Les Misérables, Honeymoon in Vegas, A Bronx Tale, and Bandstand. The theater is also the home to an award-winning center for musical theater education and artist training, with outreach programs that impact thousands of students each year. As one of the nation’s premier musical theaters, Paper Mill fosters a creative environment to advance the art form, educate students, develop future theater lovers, nurture inclusion, and provide access for all. We acknowledge that our theater stands on the traditional land of the Lenni-Lenape, and we honor the Indigenous people who inhabited it for thousands of years before European settlers arrived. Paper Mill Playhouse programs are made possible, in part, by funds from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts. Paper Mill Playhouse is a member of the National Alliance for Musical Theatre, the Council of Stock Theatres, and the New Jersey Theatre Alliance.
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Ashley Blanchet (Maria Rainer) is absolutely thrilled to be back at Paper Mill Playhouse, where she was last seen in the title role of Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella. Broadway: Waitress (Dawn), Frozen (Elsa u/s), Beautiful (Little Eva), Annie (Star to Be), Memphis. This summer she was Miss New Hampshire in the world premiere of the new musical The Bedwetter, written by Josh Harmon, Adam Schlesinger, and Sarah Silverman. Film/TV: The Good Fight, Better Nate Than Ever on Disney+, and the award-winning short animated film Are You Okay?, voicing the lead character, Raquelle. BFA UMich and The Walnut Hill School in Natick, MA. Instagram: @a_blanchet
Graham Rowat (Captain Georg von Trapp). Broadway: Dear Evan Hansen, Meteor Shower, Sunset Boulevard, Mamma Mia!, Guys and Dolls, LoveMusik, Dracula, Beauty and the Beast. Off Broadway: The Blue Flower (Second Stage), The Boys in the Band (Transport Group), The Minister’s Wife (Lincoln Center Theater). National Tours: Irving Berlin’s White Christmas (San Francisco, Toronto), Les Misérables (US and China). Regional: Constellations, Bells Are Ringing, A Little Night Music (Berkshire Theatre Group), Arcadia (Yale Rep), A Funny Thing…Forum (Two River Theater, Williamstown Theatre Festival). TV: Evil, Madam Secretary, Elementary, Law & Order. Recordings: LoveMusik (Broadway cast recording), Life Begins at 8:40, Sweet Bye and Bye (PS Classics). linktr.ee/grahamrowat
Cáitlín Burke (Mother Abbess). National Tour: The Sound of Music. New York: The Pirates of Penzance (City Center), The Mikado (City Center), Ruddigore (City Center), Cinderella (NAAP), Honor (Prospect), Patience (Symphony Space). Regional: The Sound of Music (Kennedy Center), A Christmas Carol (North Shore Music Theatre), The Mikado (Wolf Trap), Master Class, By Jeeves (Meadow Brook Theatre), The King and I, South Pacific, Avenue Q, M. Butterfly (Forestburgh Playhouse). London: The House of Murgatroyd (International Gilbert & Sullivan Festival), The Pirates of Penzance, Iolanthe, The Mikado (National Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Co.).
Emily Borromeo (Elsa Schraeder). Paper Mill Playhouse debut! Most recently: Angie in the first national tour of The Prom. Broadway and National Tour: School of Rock. Off Broadway: Broadway Bounty Hunter (by Joe Iconis). TV: Host and writer of “Sunny Side Up,” a preschool series (Emmy nomination; Sprout/NBCUniversal), “Tell Me a Story” (CBS), “Sneaky Pete” (Amazon), “The Jim Gaffigan Show” (TV Land), “The Sing-Off” (NBC). Brown University graduate.
Gavin Lee (Max Detweiler). Paper Mill: Lumiere in Beauty and the Beast. Broadway: Squidward in SpongeBob SquarePants: The Broadway Musical (Tony nomination, Drama Desk Award), Thénardier in Les Misérables, Bert in Disney’s Mary Poppins (Tony and Olivier nominations, Drama Desk and Theatre World Awards). Other theater: How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Madison Square Garden), Show Boat (Carnegie Hall), Holiday Inn (Goodspeed). London’s West End: Beauty and the Beast, Top Hat, Mary Poppins, Crazy for You, Peggy Sue Got Married, Me and My Girl, Oklahoma!, and Contact. TV: White Collar, Little America, Law & Order: SVU, The Good Wife. Instagram: @gavinleeofficial
Analise Scarpaci (Liesl von Trapp) is beyond thrilled to be playing the oldest role she has ever played: “16 going on 17” at the age of 23. She most recently starred in Broadway’s Mrs. Doubtfire as Lydia Hillard. Analise began her journey on Broadway at age 12 in A Christmas Story: The Musical as Esther Jane, followed by her role as a swing in Matilda. Her debut EP, Pathetic Little Dreamer, is streaming on all platforms! BFA Pace University, Musical Theatre. analisescarpaci.com
Andrew Alstat (Rolf Gruber) is hitting the Paper Mill stage for the first time and is so excited to be a part of this timeless show yet again. Recent credits include Grease (Danny Zuko) at Cape Playhouse, The Sound of Music (Rolf), Footloose (Chuck Cranston), and Seven Brides for Seven Brothers at the Muny. Other credits: The Rocky Horror Show (Rocky), Legally Blonde (Emmett), and Anything Goes (Billy Crocker). BFA CCM 2020. Instagram: @a12tat
Stacia Fernandez (Frau Schmidt) is thrilled to be back at Paper Mill, where she was last seen as Mrs. Potts in Beauty and the Beast. Recent: The Drowsy Chaperone, Native Gardens. Broadway: Mamma Mia!, The Drowsy Chaperone, Swing, Tom Sawyer, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Beauty and the Beast. Tours: Evita, Beauty and the Beast, Jerome Robbins’ Broadway, and more. Regional: Mrs. Potts three times, Reno in Anything Goes, Diana in Next to Normal, Adelaide in Guys and Dolls, Anna in The King and I, Grizabella in Cats. Films: Enchanted, Shaggy Dogg, Captain America, and Frozen 2. Partner in Streamingmusicals.com (1660vine.com coming!). Co Writer of The Loop and A Smalltowne Christmas. Visit at staciafernandez.com.
Christopher Gurr (Herr Zeller). Paper Mill Playhouse: The Sting with Harry Connick, Jr. Broadway: Cats (revival), Tuck Everlasting, Kinky Boots, Amazing Grace, and All the Way with Bryan Cranston. National Tours: Memphis and Monty Python’s Spamalot. Off Broadway: Call Me Madam and Parade at City Center, Cyrano at New Group, The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui at Classic Stage. Television: “Madame Secretary,” “Soul Santa,” “Gilded Age,” “The Good Fight,” five episodes as Godwin Page on “The Blacklist,” and, upcoming, season one of “Retreat” on FX. Union member: Actors’ Equity, SAG/AFTRA, Stage Directors and Choreographers Society. ChristopherGurr.com
Paul Slade Smith (Franz) is an actor and playwright. His political comedy, The Outsider, had its East Coast premiere here at Paper Mill Playhouse in 2018. Paul’s newest play, Offstage Romance, premieres at California’s North Coast Repertory next fall. Paul’s acting credits include the original Broadway casts of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Finding Neverland, and Lincoln Center’s My Fair Lady. Touring credits include My Fair Lady, Wicked, and The Phantom of the Opera. Regional credits include Steppenwolf, Goodman, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, and, most recently, Eureka Day at Asolo Repertory.
Mark Banik (Admiral von Schreiber). Tours: My Fair Lady (LCT), Beautiful: The Carole King Musical (first national). Other credits include Cherry Lane Theatre, Drury Lane Oakbrook, Shakespeare Theatre DC, Riverside Theatre, Fulton Opera House, and Music Theatre Wichita, among others. Film: The Vast of Night (Amazon Original), Ask for Jane (Amazon Original).
Mark S. Hoebee (Director) joined the artistic team at Paper Mill Playhouse in 2000. Under his leadership as Producing Artistic Director, Paper Mill was presented with the Regional Theatre Tony Award in 2016 and in recent years launched such noteworthy projects as the world premieres of Newsies, in partnership with Disney Theatrical Productions; Honeymoon in Vegas; Bandstand; A Bronx Tale; The Wanderer; Ever After; The Honeymooners; My Very Own British Invasion; Unmasked: The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber, with the Really Useful Group; and The Sting starring Harry Connick, Jr.; as well as the American premieres of the 25th Anniversary Production of Les Misérables, working alongside Cameron Mackintosh; Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame; and the national tour of The Bodyguard starring Deborah Cox. On Broadway, Mark directed the Actors Fund benefit of The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas starring Jennifer Hudson. He directed national tours of Victor/Victoria starring Toni Tennille, Dreamgirls, Company, and An Evening of Lerner and Loewe starring Diahann Carroll. Select directing credits at Paper Mill include West Side Story; Beauty and the Beast; Annie; Mary Poppins; Dreamgirls; Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella; Songs for a New World; Hello, Dolly! starring Tovah Feldshuh; Harold and Maude: The Musical with Estelle Parsons; The Will Rogers Follies starring John Davidson; Meet Me in St. Louis; The King and I; Miss Saigon; Disney’s High School Musical; Peter Pan; Smokey Joe’s Cafe; Damn Yankees; and The Full Monty starring Broadway legend Elaine Stritch. He resides in Glen Ridge with his partner Larry Elardo, Broadcast Coordinating Producer for the CBS Evening News and CBS Sunday Morning, and their children, Stephen and Ashley.
Kenny Ingram (Choreographer) is grateful to return to Paper Mill for The Sound of Music; he previously choreographed Dreamgirls under Mark S. Hoebee and last season’s A Jolly Holiday and Songs for a New World. Mr. Ingram recently was nominated for a Joseph Jefferson Award for his direction and choreography of Blues in the Night at Porchlight Music Theatre in Chicago. He recently directed and choreographed Cinderella at Theatre By The Sea. Mr. Ingram choreographed the first national tour of Emojiland and the Off Broadway company, which was recently filmed. Mr. Ingram also directed and choreographed Triple Threat starring James T. Lane at Zeiders American Dream Theatre in Virginia, and he choreographed Kinky Boots at Maine State Music Theatre and at the Fulton. kennyingram.com
Meghann Zervoulis Bate (Music Director & Conductor). Broadway: Funny Girl, West Side Story (2020 revival), The Prom, Mean Girls, Great Comet of 1812. Off Broadway: Only Gold (MCC), The Visitor (The Public Theater), Merrily We Roll Along (Fiasco/Roundabout), Cagney, Rated P. New works in development: White Girl in Danger and We Won’t Sleep. Here at her home base, Paper Mill Playhouse, Meg’s credits include Mary Poppins, Bandstand, Ever After, and the annual New Voices concerts. Meg is also active as a music educator and music therapist. Education: Carnegie Mellon University. www.megzmusic.com
James Fouchard (Original Scenic Design). Paper Mill: The Sound of Music; Kiss Me, Kate; Joseph… Dreamcoat; Grease. Tours: Can-Can (starring Chita Rivera), Joseph… Dreamcoat (starring Patrick Cassidy), The Show-Off (starring Jean Stapleton), 42nd Street (Asia), Thoroughly Modern Millie, Phantom, Little Shop of Horrors, South Pacific, Sound of Music (USA, Asia), Crazy for You, Grease, Oklahoma!, Singin’ in the Rain, Porgy and Bess, Will Rogers Follies, Smokey Joe’s Cafe, and Evita (supervised by Harold Prince). Regional: Kennedy Center, Pittsburgh CLO, American Musical Theater, Ford’s Theatre, Walnut Street, Syracuse Stage, Everyman Theatre, Theatre of the Stars, Feld Entertainment, Olney Theatre, Totem Pole Playhouse, Harrah’s (Atlantic City, Lake Tahoe).
Kelly James Tighe (Scenic Design) is pleased to return to Paper Mill for his tenth project. Off Broadway/National Tours: Martin Luther on Trial, The Most Reluctant Convert, The Great Divorce, The Fantasticks, Almost Heaven, Movin’ Out, Shear Madness, Cats. Regional: Paper Mill Playhouse, Slow Burn Theatre Co., Finger Lakes Musical Theatre Festival, San Jose Rep, Laguna Playhouse, Center Rep, Arts Center of Coastal Carolina, Sacramento Theatre Company, Gateway Playhouse, Contra Costa Musical Theatre, Diablo Theatre, Ray of Light. Mr. Tighe’s theatrical work is published in the textbook Scene Design and Stage Lighting, and his work as an illustrator has been published in Mooseltoe: A Moose and a Dream. Awards: SF Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle, Drama-Logue, Shellie.
Catherine Zuber (Original Costume Design). Broadway: Mrs. Doubtfire, Moulin Rouge! (Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle awards), My Fair Lady (Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle awards), Oslo, Junk, The Father, War Paint (Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle awards), The King and I (Olivier and Tony awards), Fiddler on the Roof, Golden Boy, South Pacific (Tony Award), The Coast of Utopia (Tony Award), The Light in the Piazza (Tony Award), Awake and Sing! (Tony Award), The Royal Family (Tony Award), Edward Albee’s Seascape, Gigi (Drama Desk Award). Theater Hall of Fame inductee, 2016.
Leon Dobkowski (Costume Design). For Paper Mill: Beauty and the Beast, Annie, Mary Poppins, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike. Additional credits include the Muny (St. Louis Theater Circle Award, Seussical, The Wiz; Judy Award, Tarzan), Maltz Jupiter Theatre, Theatre Under the Stars, Weston Playhouse, Feld Entertainment’s Disney Live, George Street Playhouse, Irish Repertory Theatre, Yale Repertory Theater, Pittsburgh CLO, Music Theatre Wichita, Engeman Theater, Blumenthal Performing Arts Center, Asolo Repertory Theatre, Penguin Rep, Epic Theatre Ensemble, NYMF (Outstanding Costume Design, Claudio Quest), Cape May Stage, TheatreWorks Hartford (CT Critics Choice Award nomination, The Legend of Georgia McBride). MFA Yale School of Drama. www.LeonDobkowski.com, @MrLeonD
Charlie Morrison (Lighting Design). Paper Mill: On Your Feet!, Sister Act, Songs for a New World, Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, West Side Story, The Little Mermaid, Curtains, Smokey Joe’s Cafe, The Full Monty, Meet Me in St. Louis, many more. National/International Tours: The Little Mermaid; How the Grinch Stole Christmas; A Christmas Story; The Producers; Hello, Dolly!; Chitty Chitty Bang Bang; Miss Saigon; Aida; Man of La Mancha; Guys and Dolls; Groovaloo; My Fair Lady; The King and I; 42nd Street; The Who’s Tommy; and many others. Regional: Shakespeare Theatre Company (DC), Guthrie, Goodspeed, Seattle Rep, Dallas Summer Musicals, TUTS, 5th Avenue, Kansas City Starlight, Pittsburgh CLO, George Street Playhouse, PlayMakers Rep, Tulsa Opera, and more. Two Helen Hayes Awards (seven nominations). www.cmlighting.com
Sun Hee Kil (Sound Design) is from South Korea. NYC: As You Like It (Shakespeare in the Park), Suffs (Public); The Visitor (Public); A Man of No Importance (CSC); New Victory Dance (New Victory); Goldie, Max and Milk (59E59); Flipside: The Patti Page Story (59E59); The Color Purple (Audio Experience). Associate for 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics Opening and Closing Ceremonies; Broadway: Choir Boy (Tony Award, Best Sound Design), Bernhardt/Hamlet, The Rose Tattoo; Off Broadway: Emmet Otter (New Victory), Greater Clements (Lincoln Center); International Tour: Dreamgirls. Associate Professor of Sound Design at SUNY New Paltz. www.sunheekil.com
Jimmy Goode (Hair & Wig Design) is excited to be joining the Paper Mill Playhouse family. Jimmy has been doing hair for Broadway, TV/film, and national tours for the past 14 years. Broadway: Mrs. Doubtfire (associate design), Mean Girls. National Tours: Mean Girls (associate design), The Book of Mormon, Sister Act, The Wedding Singer, Evita, Hairspray, Saturday Night Fever. Film: Killers of the Flower Moon, Joker, Maestro, Spielberg’s West Side Story. TV: “SNL,” “The Other Two” (dept. head), “FBI: Most Wanted,” “Emily in Paris,” “At Home with Amy Sedaris,” “Bull.” Much gratitude and love to Kyle, my family, David, Jameson, and Kay.
Gary Mickelson (Production Stage Manager) comes back to Paper Mill directly from the world premiere of The Griswolds’ Broadway Vacation. He has done twelve shows here; his favorites include The Other Josh Cohen, Elf, and both shows in the “Tenor-Verse.” Broadway: Come From Away, Dr. Zhivago, First Date, Memphis, Gypsy, Company, Chita Rivera: The Dancer’s Life, A Christmas Carol, The Lion in Winter, Triumph of Love, Victor/Victoria. National Tours: The Producers, Hairspray, Grease!. Off Broadway: Whorl Inside a Loop. He has captained four championship Broadway Bowling League teams and managed a championship Broadway Show League softball team.
Nora Brennan Casting, CSA (Casting). Broadway: Children’s casting director for Billy Elliot, Matilda, and The Audience starring Helen Mirren. Benny & Joon (Paper Mill Playhouse), Summer and Smoke (Classic Stage Company), And Away We Go (Pearl Theatre), West Side Story (La Scala Opera House, Milan). Nora is resident casting director for Transport Group, a NYC based theatre company. Select shows include: Broadbend, Arkansas; Picnic; Come Back, Little Sheba; Renascence; Queen of the Mist; Hello Again; The Unsinkable Molly Brown; All the Way Home; Dark at the Top of the Stairs, and others.