This production will be directed by Châtelet regular Lee Blakeley, with sets by Charles Edwards, costumes by Brigitte Reiffenstuel and choreography by Nick Winston. David Charles Abell will conduct the Orchestre de Chambre de Paris. The score will be performed in a version edited and revised by Abell with Seann Alderking, and will feature rare material that hasn't been heard for more than 50 years.
Leading the cast will be David Pittsinger (Fred Graham), Francesca Jackson (Lois Lane), Alan Burkitt (Bill Calhoun) and Christine Buffle (Lilli Vanessi). Buffle has previously been seen on the stage of the Théâtre du Châtelet as Anna Leonowens in The King and I and as The Baker's Wife in Into the Woods, both directed by Blakeley. The company also includes Jasmine Roy (Hattie), Fela Lufadeju (Paul), Martyn Ellis (First Man), Daniel Robinson (Second Man) and Jack Harrison-Cooper, Thierry Picaut, Joe Sherridan, Damian Thantrey, Franck Vincent, Thomas Boutilier, Ryan-Lee Seager, Sean Lopeman, John Paval, Lydie Alberto, Emily Apps, Catherine Arondel, Fiona Bitmead, Elisa Doughty, Alexandre Bernot, Grégory Garrell, Rebecca Jayne-Davies, Franck Lopez, Anjali Mehra, Molly McGuire, Eddie Myles, Lucy Page, Charlotte Anne Steen and Lauren Van Kempen.
Kiss Me, Kate was last seen in Paris in 1993, in a French-language production adapted and directed by Alain Marcel at Théâtre Mogador, where it ran for 30 performances.
With a book by Sam and Bella Spewack, Kiss Me, Kate tells of the complicated relationship between star Fred Graham and leading lady and ex-wife Lilli Vanessi while touring in a musical version of Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew. A secondary story involves gambler Bill Calhoun and Lois Lane.
Songs from the score include "Another Openin', Another Show," "Why Can't You Behave?," "So in Love," "I Hate Men," "Too Darn Hot," "Always True to You in My Fashion" and "Brush Up Your Shakespeare." For more information visit chatelet-theatre.com.
Stéphane Ly-Cuong is a Paris-based freelance writer and director. He can be reached by email at [email protected].