Wicked and Rent star Eden Espinosa takes on the role of Mary Flynn in Maria Friedman's production of Merrily We Roll Along, which begins performances at Boston's Huntington Theatre Company September 8. Joining her are Mark Umbers and Damian Humbley, who reprise their performances as Franklin Shepard and Charley Kringas, respectively, from the staging's previous London bow.
The 1981 musical marks the third entry in the Huntington's long-term Sondheim initiative; the Tony-winning company intends to stage all 15 musicals featuring music and lyrics by the legendary composer. Merrily We Roll Along follows 2015's A Little Night Music and last year's Sunday in the Park with George.
The production, directed by three-time Olivier winner Maria Friedman and choreographed by Tim Jackson, premiered at London's Menier Chocolate Factory in 2012 before transferring to the West End the following year to critical acclaim.
Espinosa last appeared on Broadway in Rent, playing the role of Maureen in the final cast. She has also starred as Elphaba in Wicked on Broadway and in the Los Angeles and San Francisco sit-down engagements. Umbers recently starred in the London revival of She Loves Me at the Menier Chocolate Factory. Humbley's additional stage credits include Forbidden Broadway in London and the West End revival of Fiddler on the Roof.
New England favorites Aimee Doherty and Jennifer Ellis take on the roles of Gussie and Beth, respectively. The cast also includes Christopher Chew as Joe Josephson, Robert Saoud and Amy Barker as Mr. and Mrs. Spencer, Ceit Zweil as Evelyn, and Cameron Levesque and Brendan Cole O'Brien alternating in the role of Frank Jr.
Rounding out the company are Jessica Kundla, Maurice Emmanuel Parent, Rebecca Gibel, Pablo Torres, Patrick Varner, Craig Waletzko, Morgan Kirner, Caleb Damschroder, Bransen Gates, and Carla Martinez.
Merrily We Roll Along follows—in reverse chronological order—the careers and complicated friendship between successful composer and producer Frank, his collaborator Charley, and writer Mary.
The production features music direction by Matthew Stern, scenic and costume design by Soutra Gilmour, and lighting design by Philip Rosenberg. Emily F. McMullen and Kevin Schlagle serve as production stage manager and stage manager.