Nkrumah Gatling, Marissa McGowan, Leo Ash Evens, More Will Star in TheatreWorks’ Ragtime

Regional News   Nkrumah Gatling, Marissa McGowan, Leo Ash Evens, More Will Star in TheatreWorks’ Ragtime
 
Performances of the Tony-nominated musical will begin in April in Palo Alto, California.
Promotional art for <i>Ragtime</i> at TheatreWorks Silicon Valley
Promotional art for Ragtime at TheatreWorks Silicon Valley Kevin Berne

TheatreWorks Silicon Valley will present the Tony-nominated musical Ragtime beginning April 1 at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts in Palo Alto, California.

Directed by Robert Kelley, the limited engagement will continue through May 3.

Leo Ash Evens
Leo Ash Evens

The cast will be headed by Leo Ash Evens (Jesus Christ Superstar, Shuffle Along…) as Tateh, Nkrumah Gatling (Hair, Miss Saigon) as Coalhouse Walker Jr., Iris Beaumier (Modern Love, Instinct) as Sarah, Marissa McGowan (Kiss Me, Kate) as Mother, Jonathan Rhys Williams as Father, Adam Shonkwiler as Younger Brother, Martin Rojas Dietrich as Grandfather, Michael Gene Sullivan as Booker T. Washington, Melissa WolfKlain as Evelyn Nesbit, Suzanne Grodner as Emma Goldman, Shaun Leslie Thomas as Harry Houdini and fire chief Will Conklin, Leslie Ivy as Sarah's Friend, and Anthone Duriel Jackson as Harlem Man.

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Ragtime underwent a two-year gestation under the auspices of Garth Drabinsky, opening in Toronto in December 1996 and then in Los Angeles in June 1997 before arriving on Broadway. The production was directed by Tony winner Frank Galati with choreography by Graciela Daniele.

The musical mixes fictional characters and historical ones in telling the story of Coalhouse Walker Jr., a Black man who buys a Model T Ford, setting off a chain of events that involve all levels of New York City society—along with magician Harry Houdini, industrialist Henry Ford, celebrity Evelyn Nesbit, Black leader Booker T. Washington, architect Sanford White, revolutionary Emma Goldman, Admiral Peary, a Latvian immigrant who becomes a movie director, and a not-so-quiet family in suburban New Rochelle, New York.

READ: TheatreWorks Silicon Valley Sets Sense & Sensibility Musical, Man of La Mancha, More for 2020–2021 Season

The musical was nominated for 14 1998 Tony Awards, including Best Musical. It took home four awards, including Best Book of a Musical (Terrence McNally), Best Original Score (Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens), Best Featured Actress in a Musical (Audra McDonald), and Best Orchestrations (William David Brohn).

The Actors Fund will present a benefit concert of Ragtime, starring original cast members Brian Stokes Mitchell, Audra McDonald, and Peter Friedman, April 27 at Broadway's Minskoff Theatre.

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