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2006/07 Season
PRODUCTIONS
Caroline, or Change
This Philadelphia premiere is proudly sponsored by The Jewish Exponent and inside Magazine.
Jewish Exponent and inside Magazine
Philadelphia Premiere
Book and Lyrics by TONY KUSHNER
Music by JEANINE TESORI
Directed by TERRENCE J. NOLEN
On the F. Otto Haas Stage
March 8 - April 15, 2007

Race, rage and civil rights are at the heart of this acclaimed, deeply personal story by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tony Kushner (Angels in America). Drawn from Kushner's own Louisiana childhood, Caroline, or Change centers on Caroline Thibodeaux, a divorced, middle-aged African-American maid who works for a Jewish family in the suburban enclave of Lake Charles, Louisiana, in 1963. She finds herself in the middle of a family conflict when eight-year-old Noah Gellman's stepmother allows Caroline to keep any money she finds in the child's pockets while doing the laundry. The show's title references the poignant double meaning of the spare change Noah leaves behind and the vast social changes occurring in 1960s America.

Originally commissioned as an opera, Caroline, or Change features a virtuosic, sung-through score by Jeanine Tesori, composer of Thoroughly Modern Millie and Violet – which had its Philadelphia premiere at Arden Theatre Company in 1999. Blending blues, gospel, klezmer and traditional Jewish melodies, Tesori's music provides the breathtaking medium for Kushner's provocative and powerful tale. Caroline, or Change opened on Broadway in May 2004 and was applauded by The New York Times as "an extraordinary new musical."

This production is supported by the Charlotte Cushman Foundation and by the Philadelphia Theatre Initiative, a program of the Philadelphia Center for Arts and Heritage, funded by the Pew Charitable Trusts and administered by The University of the Arts.

Slide Show Study Guide Press Release
Critical Acclaim–

"Deeply human... splendid... rich, emotionally driven characters...thrillingly unpredictable... top-notch" –Philadelphia Inquirer

"From its breathtaking opening to its poignant finale, Arden Theatre Company's spellbinding production of the musical Caroline, or Change proves originality can still be found in American theater." –Philadelphia Weekly  [Read review]

"Gripping ... dazzling theatricality. Joilet F. Harris effortlessly brings a striking power to the role [of Caroline]." –Reading Eagle  [Read review]

"Kushner and Tesori energize the form, crafting first rate musical theatre by wrapping bits of life in stunning music. Joilet Harris can sing her heart out" –Curtain Up  [Read review]

"Triumphant! This stellar ensemble is headed by the magnificent performance of Joilet F. Harris as Caroline." –Edge Philadelphia  [Read review]

"One of the most ambitious pieces of musical theater to emerge this decade." –Talkin' Broadway  [Read review]

"Caroline is a must ... an unquestionably powerful and provocative evening of theater" –Philadelphia City Paper

"Talent in abundance ... clever, thought-provoking ... mega-talented cast" –County Press

"The most impressive show I can recall" –KYW Newsradio

Behind the Scenes–

Howard Shapiro interviews Jeanine Tesori in The Philadelphia Inquirer's TheaterCast.  [Get podcast]

NPR talks with Tony Kushner about his new Broadway musical Caroline, or Change (from Dec. 2004).  [Get podcast]

KYW's Hadas Kuznits speaks with director Terry Nolen and gets audience reactions.  [Get podcast]
1
Caroline, or Change
Cast
Griffin Back
Tallia Brinson
Malik Burrell
Sherri L. Edelen
Thursday Farrar
Joilet F. Harris
Adam Heller
Danielle Herbert
Alan Kutner
Adé Laoye
Marsha Lawson
Russell Leib
Jay Pierce
Kelly J. Rucker
Elyse McKay Taylor
Maureen Torsney-Weir
Nicholas Blake Trawick

Scenic Designer
James Kronzer
Costume Designer
Rosemarie E. McKelvey
Lighting Designer
Justin Townsend
Sound Designer
Jorge Cousineau
Music Design
Eric Ebbenga
Choreographer
Patricia Scott Hobbs
Assistant Director
Na Tanya Davina Stewart
Assistant Music Director
David Ames
Stage Manager
John David Flak


APPLAUSE, PLEASE,
FOR OUR SPONSORS:
Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News & Philly.com
KYW 1060-AM
WHYY
Philadelphia Daily News
©2009 Arden Theatre Company, 40 N. 2nd St., Philadelphia, PA 19106. For tickets, call 215.922.1122.
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