NextStop Theatre Company’s new production of Stephen Sondheim’s Into the Woods, running May 1-June 1, 2014, makes a major announcement for the season-closing production. Directed by NextStop’s Artistic Director Evan Hoffmann, the production team is announcing the addition of TODAY Show Co-Host, Kathie Lee Gifford, as the voice of the Giant’s Wife. The addition of Ms. Gifford is a significant achievement for the emerging company as they close out their inaugural main stage season.
Having previously worked directly with Artistic Director, Evan Hoffmann, Kathie Lee Gifford shares her excitement in joining this production:
“I have known Evan since he was in an early production of Saving Aimee at Signature Theatre back in 2007. So I was happy when he asked me to record the voice of the Giant’s Wife,” says Gifford. “I love the DC theatre community, I adore Stephen Sondheim, and I am always thrilled to help a friend who is working to achieve his dreams.”
Ms. Gifford joins the ranks of such celebrated actresses as Dame Judi Dench, Glenn Close, and Angela Lansbury, who have each lent their voice to the role in past notable productions.
NextStop’s cast will be led by 2013 Helen Hayes Award winner Priscilla Cuellar as the Witch and 2014 nominee John Loughney as the Baker. They will be joined by Laura Fontaine as Florinda, Scott Gaines as Cinderella’s Prince/The Wolf, Scott Harrison as Rapunzel’s Prince, Jennifer Lambert as Cinderella’s Stepmother, Ryan Manning as the Narrator, Brittany Martz as Cinderella, Sean McComas as Jack, Katie McManus as the Baker’s Wife, Lynn Audrey Neal as Jack’s Mother, Nora Palka as Little Red Ridinghood, Allizon Reggioli as Cinderella’s Mother/Granny, Blakeman Brophy as the Mysterious Man, Suzanne Stanley as Rapunzel, Danny Tippett as the Steward, and Jaclyn Young as Lucinda.
Into the Woods combines the iconic stories of Little Red Riding Hood, Cinderella, Rapunzel, and Jack (the giant killer), with the new tale of a childless baker and his wife. Their intertwining quests into the woods result in a twistedly funny, but sobering musical about the cost and consequences of “happily ever after.” The original Broadway production garnered three Tony Awards and a Grammy, and inspired an upcoming Hollywood movie starring Meryl Streep, Johnny Depp, and Anna Kendrick.
The creative team behind the production includes Elisa Rosman (music direction), Lorraine Magee (choreography), Steven Royal (scenic design), Frank Coleman (lighting design), Kathy Dunlap (costume design), Eric Kritzler (sound design), and Sierra Banack (properties design). Joan Lada serves as the Production Stage Manager.