The sun has come out again off-Broadway! Tony nominee Will Swenson will play the role of father and motivational speaker Richard Hoover in the new musical Little Miss Sunshine, replacing Tony nominee Will Chase. As previously announced, Chase withdrew from the production to accept a role as a charismatic country singer on TV’s Nashville. Directed by James Lapine, Little Miss Sunshine begins performances October 15 at off-Broadway’s Second Stage Theatre, with an official opening night slated for mid-November.
Swenson garnered a Tony nomination for Hair. His additional Broadway credits include Priscilla Queen of the Desert, 110 in the Shade, Lestat and Brooklyn. He was most recently seen off-Broadway in Murder Ballad. Swenson was announced to play Dr. Frank-N-Furter in the Bucks County Playhouse production of The Rocky Horror Show from October 23 through November 2 in New Hope, PA. No word on how his appearance in Little Miss Sunshine will affect his prior commitment.
Little Miss Sunshine features music and lyrics by William Finn and a book by Lapine. The new musical tells the story of young Olive Hoover (played by Hannah Rose Nordberg) who goes on an 800-mile road trip with her eccentric family to win the coveted title of “Little Miss Sunshine.” In addition to Nordberg and Swenson, the production stars Stephanie J. Block as Sheryl Hoover, Rory O’Malley as Frank Hoover, Wesley Taylor as Joshua Rose, Josh Lamon as Buddy, David Rasche as Grandpa Hoover, Jennifer Sanchez as Miss California and Logan Rowland as Dwayne Hoover.