Encores! Off-Center: The Cradle Will RockNew York City Center (131 W 55th St New York, NY 10019 (212) 581-1212) Map it $25
Music, Lyrics and Book by Marc Blitzstein
Directed by Sam Gold
Choreographed by Chase Brock
Music Direction by Chris Fenwick
New York City Center goes Off-Broadway with Encores! Off-Center, a new musical theater series led by artistic director Jeanine Tesori. Off-Center features seminal Off-Broadway musicals filtered through the lens of today’s most innovative artists.
The Cradle Will Rock is a Brechtian allegory of corruption and corporate greed that pits exploited workers against greedy, union-busting businessmen. When the original production, directed by Orson Welles, opened Off-Broadway at the Venice Theatre in 1937, financial and union issues precluded an orchestra, so Blitzstein himself played the piano at the first preview. When the show moved to Broadway in 1938, union rules dictated a 10-person orchestra, but Blitzstein insisted on keeping the solo piano and paid nine musicians not to play each night. It was nearly ten years before the show was performed with full score, chorus and actors—right here at City Center, in 1947, with Leonard Bernstein conducting.
New York City Center gratefully acknowledges the Encores! Off-Center Leadership Sponsors, Stacey and Eric Mindich and Stacy Bash-Polley. Additional support for Encores! Off-Center has been provided by Alec Stais and Elissa Burke and Larry Hirschorn and Melissa Posen.