Project Description

Chicago (Broadway)

Chicago (Broadway & Tour)

A revival of CHICAGO with music by John Kander; book by Fred Ebb and Bob Fosse; lyrics by Fred Ebb opened on Broadway at the Richard Rodgers Theatre on November 14, 1996 and ran to February 9, 1997. Based on the play by Maurine Dallas Watkins. Transferred to Shubert Theatre to reopen on February 11, 1997  and ran to January 26, 2003 and then transferred again to the Ambassador Theatre to reopen on January 29, 2003 where it is still running.

Chicago is the longest-running American musical in Broadway history.

Produced by Barry and Fran Weissler in association with Kardana Productions, Inc. (Alecia Parker, Associate Producer), presented in association with PACE Theatrical Group/Hart Sharp Entertainment. Presented by special arrangement with American Play Company; Based on the presentation by City Center’s Encores! Great American Musicals in Concert.

Directed by Walter Bobbie; Choreographed in the style of Bob Fosse by Ann Reinking; Original choreography for “Hot Honey Rag” by Bob Fosse; Scenic Design by John Lee Beatty; Costume Design by William Ivey Long; Lighting Design by Ken Billington; Sound Design by Scott Lehrer, Hair Design by Rolando Beauchamp; Musical Direction by Rob Fisher; Original orchestrations by Ralph Burns; Dance arrangements by Peter Howard; Script adaptation by David Thompson.

Assistant Director: Jonathan Bernstein; Assistant Choreographer: Debra McWaters; Assistant Scenic Design: Eric Renschler and Shelley Barclay; Assistant Costume Design: Lynn Bowling; Personal Assistant to Mr. Billington: Jon Kusner; Associate Lighting Design: John McKernon.

General Manager: Darwall Associates and Maria Di Dia; Company Manager: Scott A. Moore; House Manager: Felice Rose
Technical Supervisor: Arthur Siccardi; Production Stage Manager: Clifford Schwartz; Stage Manager: Terrence J. Witter; Assistant Stage Manager: Mindy Farbrother. Casting Director: Jay Binder; Press Representative: The Pete Sanders Group, Pete Sanders and Bill Coyle; Online marketing by Toby Simkin; Dance Captain: Caitlin Carter and Luis Perez; Advertising: Grey Entertainment, Inc.; Press Associate: Glenna Freedman.

Starring Bebe Neuwirth (Velma Kelly), Ann Reinking (Roxie Hart), Michael Berresse (Fred Casely), Michael Kubala (Sergeant Fogarty / Juror), Joel Grey (Amos Hart), Denise Faye (Liz), Mamie Duncan-Gibbs (Annie), Mary Ann Lamb (June), Tina Paul (Hunyak), Caitlin Carter (Mona), Marcia Lewis (Matron “Mama” Morton), James Naughton (Billy Flynn), D. Sabella (Mary Sunshine), Leigh Zimmerman (Go-to-Hell Kitty), Rocker Verastique (Harry), David Warren-Gibson (Aaron), Jim Borstelmann (The Judge), Bruce Anthony Davis (Doctor / Martin Harrison) and John Mineo (Bailiff / Court Clerk)

Standby: Nancy Hess (Roxie Hart, Velma Kelly)

Swings: Mindy Cooper and Luis Perez

Understudies: Michael Berresse (Billy Flynn),  Mamie Duncan-Gibbs (Matron),  J. Loeffelholtz (Mary Sunshine) and John Mineo (Amos Hart)

Musical Coordinator: Seymour ‘Red’ Press; Conducted by Rob Fisher; Assistant Conductor: Jeffrey Saver; Woodwinds: Seymour ‘Red’ Press, Kenneth Hitchcock and Richard Centalonza; Trumpet: John Frosk and Darryl Shaw; Trombone: Dave Bargeron and Bruce Bonvissuto; Piano: Leslie Stifelman; Piano / Accordion: Jeffrey Saver; Banjo: Jay Berliner; Bass / Tuba: Ronald Raffio; Violin: Marilyn Reynolds; Drums / Percussion: Ronald Zito; Music Preparation: Chelsea Music Services, Inc., Donald Oliver and Evan Morris

Among the many other performers and celebrities who have appeared in the show during its long run are Michelle Williams, Usher, Brandy, Christopher Sieber, Charlotte d’Amboise, Michael C. Hall, Roz Ryan, Jerry Springer, Brooke Shields, NeNe Leakes, Debra Monk, Patrick Swayze, Kevin Richardson, Gretchen Mol, Rita Wilson, Alan Thicke, Melanie Griffith, Taye Diggs, Carol Woods, Chandra Wilson, John O’Hurley, Christine Pedi, Ashlee Simpson, Adam Pascal, Amy Spanger, Leigh Zimmerman, Wendy Williams, Samantha Harris, Jennifer Nettles, Marilu Henner, Jeff McCarthy, Philip Casnoff, Pasquale Aleardi, Ruthie Henshall, Christie Brinkley, Tony Yazbeck, Kara DioGuardi, Sofía Vergara, Mel B,  Ryoko Yonekura and Todrick Hall.

The Broadway theatre supersite Buy Broadway OnlineAs Founder and CEO of Theatre.com and BuyBroadway.com.  The pioneer in moving the Broadway industry onto the internet. The theatre press branded me as “Toby is the man pushing theatre, kicking and screaming, into cyberspace.” What started in 1989 as a Broadway industry service called ShowCall via dialup BBS for members of the League of American Theatre Producers evolved onto the world wide web in the early 90’s, and shortly after this, the vast majority of Broadway shows (starting with my production of Victor/Victoria) and theatrical organizations followed. The “Super site of Broadway” became a publicly traded company, prior to my re-branding it as Theatre.com at the Minskoff Theatre.

The global theater supersite theatre.comDescribed by Variety Magazine as a “marketing powerhouse“, it was the single largest theatre community in the world with over 180,000 active members (in the 1990’s this was massive). From buying official Broadway tickets and souvenirs, providing detailed global show listings, interactive show study & educational guides, live streaming shows and events (including many Opening Nights live broadcasts), industry news from major theatre journalists, pictures and videos, games, messaging directly to Broadway cast’s backstage or even licensing a musical, theatre.com offered it all in a single, easy-to-use interface to theatregoers globally.

CHICAGO Broadway

Chicago Broadway Poster Chicago (Broadway) Chicago Broadway Poster Sandy Chicago (Broadway) Chicago Broadway Poster Montage Chicago Broadway 43 Chicago Broadway 52 Chicago Broadway 60 Chicago Broadway 25 Chicago Broadway 34 Chicago Broadway 76 Chicago Broadway 10th Anniversary Chicago Broadway 09 Chicago Broadway 11 Chicago Broadway Marquee USHER Chicago (Broadway) [Program] www Chicago Broadway e1615300328512 Chicago Broadway Dancing Cast Chicago Broadway Dancing Cast Color Chicago Broadway feathers color Chicago Broadway Band Shell Chicago Broadway Ambassador Theatre exterior   Chicago Broadway Razzle Dazzle ad at HoJos InTheater Magazine

On November 18, 1997, a copy of the Broadway revival production opened in London’s West End.

Did You Know?

The musical is based on a play ‘Chicago‘ by reporter and playwright Maurine Dallas Watkins, who was assigned to cover the 1924 trials of accused murderers Beulah Annan and Belva Gaertner for the Chicago Tribune

Fred Ebb said he wrote the book in a vaudeville style because “the characters were performers. Every musical moment in the show was loosely modeled on someone else: Roxie was Helen Morgan, Velma was Texas Guinan, Billy Flynn was Ted Lewis, Mama Morton was Sophie Tucker.

Composer John Kander elaborates that the reason the show was called a vaudeville “is because many of the songs we wrote are related to specific performers like those you mentioned, and Eddie Cantor and Bert Williams as well.”

CHICAGO New York TV AD

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CHICAGO: A Musical Vaudeville opened on June 3, 1975, at the 46th Street Theatre for a run of 936 performances with direction and choreography by Bob Fosse and a cast that included Gwen Verdon (Roxie Hart), Chita Rivera (Velma Kelly), Jerry Orbach (Billy Flynn), Mary McCarty (Matron “Mama” Morton), Barney Martin (Amos Hart), and M. O’Haughey (Mary Sunshine).

The musical received mixed reviews and opened the same year as Michael Bennett’s A Chorus Line, which beat Chicago in both ticket sales and the Tony Awards. Gwen Verdon had to have surgery on nodes in her throat after inhaling a feather during the show’s finale. The producers contemplated closing the show, but Liza Minnelli stepped in to play Verdon’s role of Roxie Hart for a month (August 8 through September 13, 1975), boosting the show’s popularity.

It played over two years on Broadway, toured nationally for almost two years, was produced in London, received ten Tony Award nominations, and returned a profit.

Musical Numbers

Act One:

  • “All That Jazz” (Bebe Neuwirth, Company);
  • “Funny Honey” (Ann Reinking);
  • “Cell Block Tango” (Bebe Neuwirth, Denise Faye, Mamie Duncan-Gibbs, Mary Ann Lamb, Tina Paul, Caitlin Carter);
  • “When You’re Good to Mama” (Marcia Lewis);
  • “Tap Dance” (Ann Reinking, Joel Grey, Boys);
  • “All I Care About” (James Naughton, Girls);
  • “A Little Bit of Good” (D. Sabella);
  • “We Both Reached for the Gun” (aka “The Press Conference Rag”) (James Naughton, Ann Reinking, D. Sabella, Company);
  • “Roxie” (Ann Reinking, Boys);
  • “I Can’t Do It Alone” (Bebe Neuwirth);
  • “My Own Best Friend” (Ann Reinking, Bebe Neuwirth)

Act Two:

  • Entr’acte (Orchestra);
  • “I Know a Girl” (Bebe Neuwirth);
  • “Me and My Baby” (Ann Reinking, Boys);
  • “Mister Cellophane” (Joel Grey);
  • “When Velma Takes the Stand” (Bebe Neuwirth, Boys);
  • “Razzle Dazzle” (James Naughton, Company);
  • “Class” (Bebe Neuwirth, Marcia Lewis);
  • “Nowadays” (Ann Reinking, Bebe Neuwirth);
  • “Hot Honey Rag” (choreography by Bob Fosse) (Ann Reinking, Bebe Neuwirth);
  • Finale (Company)

My COVID-19 parody of CHICAGO in May 2022 in Shanghai Lockdown 

Chicago COVID 19 Shanghai 2022 reimagined Poster

See over 100 more of my Broadway Parodies or my 75 Shanghai Lockdown parodies.

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