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Thursday, 01 September 2011 14:17

CHICAGO Now Longest Running American Musical in Broadway History



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Charlotte d'Amboise as George WashingtonLast night (Monday, August 29, 2011), the internationally acclaimed revival of John Kander, Fred Ebb and Bob Fosse's Tony Award-winning musical CHICAGO celebrated another major milestone when it became thelongest-running American musical in Broadway history, surpassing A Chorus Linewith a total of 6,138 performances!  

In celebration of the milestone, Tony Award nominee Charlotte d'Amboise and the merry murderesses of CHICAGO took to the stage of the Ambassador Theatre to create a special America-themed photo series.

Inspired by the popular debut issue of the 1995 magazine George -- featuring a renowned cover photo of supermodel Cindy Crawford dressed as America's founding father -- Tony Award winning costume designer William Ivey Long and Tony Award winning wig designer Paul Huntleytransformed Ms. d'Amboise into "George Washington" à la the iconic razzle-dazzle style ofCHICAGO.

The photo series also includes cast members Donna Marie Asbury, Nili Bassman, Nicole Bridgewater, Dylis Croman, Melissa Rae Mahon and Tonya Wathen recreating classic CHICAGO moments featuring "George Washington" (as portrayed by Dean Malissa).

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Last night's performance also made CHICAGO the fourth-longest running show in Broadway history.

"What a momentus occasion this is!" said producer Barry Weissler. "Of course we're thrilled to take the number four position in the list of long-runners, but to also celebrate the fact that CHICAGO is now the longest-running American musical in Broadway history makes it all the more spectacular. And just as Velma Kelly sings, we couldn't have done it alone. This milestone would never have happened without the amazing group of people who've lent their talents and expertise to our production over the past 15 years -- the phenomenal cast, crew, production team, stage managers, advertising and marketing executives, business managers, casting directors, ushers, musicians, dance captains...and the list goes on. And of course, our incredible and enthusiastic audiences. Over five million people have seen CHICAGO on Broadway to-date, and they just keep coming. It's truly a phenomenon worth celebrating."

As of Monday, August 29, the top-five longest-running productions of all time are as follows:

     1. The Phantom of the Opera (9,810)

     2. Cats (7,485)
     3. Les Miserables (6,680)
     4. Chicago (6,138)
     5. A Chorus Line (6,137)

(Broadway's top three longest-running shows -- The Phantom of the Opera, Cats andLes Miserables -- are all British imports.)

The Broadway production currently stars two-time Tony Award nominee Charlotte d'Amboise as Roxie Hart, Nikka Graff Lanzarone as Velma Kelly, Tony Yazbeck as Billy Flynn, Chris Sullivan as Amos Hart and Carol Woods as Matron "Mama" Morton.

As previously announced, former "American Idol" judge Kara DioGuardi will make her Broadway debut as Roxie Hart in an eight-week engagement beginning Monday, September 5.

DioGuardi will be joined by longtime CHICAGO veteran and fan-favorite Amra-Faye Wright as Velma Kelly. (Nikka Graff Lanzarone plays her final performance on Sunday, September 4.)

With a legendary book by Fred Ebb and Bob Fosse, music by John Kander and lyrics by Fred EbbCHICAGO is the winner of six 1997 Tony Awards including Best Musical Revival and the Grammy Award for Best Musical Cast Recording. 

Set amidst the razzle-dazzle decadence of the 1920s, CHICAGO is the story of Roxie Hart, a housewife and nightclub dancer who murders her on-the-side lover after he threatens to walk out on her. Desperate to avoid conviction, she dupes the public, the media and her rival cellmate, Velma Kelly, by hiring Chicago's slickest criminal lawyer to transform her malicious crime into a barrage of sensational headlines, the likes of which might just as easily be ripped from today's tabloids. 

Directed by Tony Award winner Walter Bobbie and choreographed by Tony Award winner Ann ReinkingCHICAGO features set design by John Lee Beatty, costume design by Tony Award winner William Ivey Long, lighting design by Tony Award winnerKen Billington and sound design by Scott Lehrer.

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CHICAGO now plays on Broadway at the Ambassador Theatre (219 W. 49th St.).  The current summer performance schedule (through Sunday, September 4) is as follows:

   Mondays at 8 p.m.

   Wednesdays at 8 p.m.

   Thursdays at 3 p.m. and 8 p.m.

   Fridays at 8 p.m.

   Saturdays at 2:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.

   Sundays at 7 p.m. 

Beginning Monday, September 5, the regular weekly performance schedule is as follows:

   Mondays at 8 p.m.

   Tuesdays at 8 p.m.

   Thursdays at 8 p.m.

   Fridays at 8 p.m.

   Saturdays at 2:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.

   Sundays at 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m.

Please note that there will be special added performances on Wednesday, September 14 and Wednesday, September 21 at 2:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Tickets are available by calling at 212-239-6200.  Tickets may also be purchased in-person at the Ambassador Theatre Box Office.  Regular Box Office hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and Noon to 7 p.m. Sunday.

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Last modified on Thursday, 01 September 2011 14:19