Lyric Stage has been raising the stakes for everyone with its full-orchestra and original-orchestration revivals of the big classic musicals, including a few rare gems, such as Frank Loesser's Pleasures and Palaces and Rodgers and Hart's Too Many Girls in this current season.
In 2013-'14, Lyric's 21st season, which Steven Jones announced from the stage at the opening of Pleasures and Palaces Thursday night, there'll be more of that, including the season's bookends, revivals of two massive hits: Rodgers and Hammerstein's The Sound of Music and Jerry Herman's Mame. But it's also returning to something that was its hallmark in the first 15 years of the theater: World premiere musicals.
Next season, that'll happen with Blue Roses, a musical take on Tennessee Williams' The Glass Menagerie, performed with a chamber orchestra in the Irving Arts Center's smaller Dupree Theater. The music is by Nancy Ford, book and lyrics by Mimi Turque.
Three of the other shows—The Sound of Music, Mame, and a concert version of the rarely revived 1926 operetta The Desert Song, which has music by Sigmund Romberg and book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, Otto Harbach and Frank Mandel—will be in the IAC's Carpenter Performance Hall.
The Sound of Music marks the fourth major Rodgers and Hammerstein musical that Lyric will have given the full-orchestra treatment. Their very first revival to do this was Carousel in 2007 and they followed that with productions of The King and I in 2009 and Oklahoma! in 2012. South Pacific can't be too far off.
Interestingly, Lyric will go out of Irving for three performances of a full production of Maury Yeston and Arthur Kopit's Nine, which is based on the Fellini film 8½, at Dallas City Performance Hall, with full orchestra.
Here's the breakdown of the season with dates:
- The Sound of Music: Sept. 6-15, 2013 at Irving Arts Center, Carpenter Performance Hall
- Nine: Nov. 8-9 at Dallas City Performance Hall
- The Desert Song, in a concert staging: Jan. 23-26, 2014 at Irving Arts Center, Carpenter Performance Hall
- Blue Roses, a world premiere based on The Glass Menagerie: Feb. 7-23 at Irving Arts Center, Dupree Theater
- Mame: June 13-22 at Irving Arts Center, Carpenter Performance Hall
For subscriptions and more info, visit www.lyricstage.org or call 972-252-2787.