The Kimmel Center and Bucks County Playhouse have announced the creation of a new partnership designed to further the producing initiatives of both organizations and foster a cultural exchange of new works.
The partnership debuts this summer with a joint venture to restage the Bucks County Playhouse’s record-breaking production of Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story. The musical will first run at the Bucks County Playhouse from May 27 through June 17 and will then transfer to the Kimmel Center’s Perelman Theater on June 24 for previews, with the official opening June 28. The show will run at the Kimmel Center through July 9.
Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story is one of the most popular rock musicals in history and has been seen by more than 22 million people worldwide. The show broke box office records when Bucks County Playhouse produced it in 2016.
From his meteoric rise to fame in 1957 through his tragic death less than two years later, Buddy Holly influenced modern music like no other performer of his generation. Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story features more than 20 of Holly’s greatest hits, including “That’ll Be The Day,” “Peggy Sue,” “Oh Boy,” and many more. The show features a book by Alan Janes and music and lyrics by Buddy Holly. It opened in London’s West End, where it ran for over 10 years, and premiered on Broadway in 1990.
The production is helmed by director Tony nominee Hunter Foster (director of BCP’s Company, Ain’t Misbehavin’ and the upcoming Clue On Stage), and choreographer Lorin Latarro (Waitress, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time), both of whom serve as Bucks County Playhouse Artistic Associates. The design team includes Adam Koch as scenic designer with lighting design by Gina Scherr, costume design by Nicole V. Moody, and sound design by Matthew Given.
Buddy marks the beginning of a cultural exchange between the two established organizations — one that will bring the best of Broadway to Broad Street and then beyond. Leadership from both organizations are in talks about incubator programs that can benefit from associated artists and programs that can reach new audiences through shared presentations.
Already immersed in the producing world, the Kimmel Center has built a vast network of emerging and established artists. Producing credits and project range from the Tony Award-winning musical, An American in Paris, and the bi-annual Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts (PIFA); to two residency programs – one each for Jazz and Theater – designed to foster the creation of new works by local artists.
Since a lavish renovation and reopening in 2012, New Hope’s Bucks County Playhouse, under the direction of Tony winning producers, Producing Director Alexander Fraser (The Normal Heart) and Executive Producer Robyn Goodman (Avenue Q, In the Heights) and their producing partners Joshua Fiedler and Stephen Kocis, the Playhouse has reestablished itself as one of the region’s premier producing organizations. Through new works by emerging theater artists and new productions of favorites and that have featured stars from Hollywood and Broadway, including Christopher Durang, Marilu Henner, Marsha Mason Patricia Richardson, Susan Sullivan and Jessica Walter, the Playhouse has restored luster to what was nationally known as one of the country’s most revered stages.
“We are thrilled to launch this new initiative with Bucks County Playhouse, the esteemed theatre that has risen from the ashes through a multi-million-dollar renovation to become the gorgeous jewel of the Delaware Valley,” said Anne Ewers, President & CEO of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts. “After only four seasons, the Playhouse is now an important producer of great theatre in our region. It is imperative to our mission to showcase extraordinary talent, and we look forward to working with the Playhouse to bring their record-breaking production of Buddy to the Perelman this summer, and to future collaborations.”
“We are deeply honored that the Kimmel Center has chosen our production of Buddy to initiate this new summer season at the Perelman,” said Alexander Fraser, Producing Director of Bucks County Playhouse. “As a producing team, we have worked on Broadway, but in many ways, Broad Street is a bigger deal. We are very excited to introduce our work to Philadelphia audiences who already trust the Kimmel Center to bring the best of the performing arts to the region. We look forward to working with the Kimmel on Buddy and on creating new ways to share innovative work in the coming seasons.”
Bucks County Playhouse
New Hope, PA
May 27–June 17, 2017
Kimmel Center’s Perelman Theater
June 24 – July 9, 2017
Tickets for the Bucks County Playhouse presentation are on sale now. Tickets can be purchased by calling 215-862-2121 or online at www.bcptheater.org or at the Bucks County Playhouse Box Office. Group sales are available for groups of 10 or more.
Tickets for the Kimmel Center presentation will go on sale to the general public on January 23, 2017. Tickets can be purchased by calling 215-893-1999, online at kimmelcenter.org, or at the Kimmel Center Box Office. Group sales are available for groups of 10 or more and can be purchased by calling (215) 790-5883. More information at kimmelcenter.org.