High School Musical star Vanessa Hudgens, along with Broadway favorites Corey Cott (Newsies), Kate Burton (Spring Awakening) and Victoria Clark (Cinderella), will perform in an industry reading of Gigi late in July in New York. As previously reported, the tuner is scheduled to open at the Kennedy Center in January 2015 and is eyeing a transfer to the Great White Way later next year.
Hudgens is best known for playing Gabriella, love interest of Zac Efron's Troy, in Disney’s High School Musical movies. Recent screen credits include Bandslam and Spring Breakers. She played Mimi in Rent at the Hollywood Bowl in 2010. The cast will also include Steffanie Leigh (Mary Poppins) and Howard McGillin (She Loves Me).
A re-imagined new production of the 1973 musical by Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Lowe, Gigi has been adapted by playwright and Emmy-nominated screenwriter Heidi Thomas. Eric D. Shaeffer will direct the workshop, which will have choreography by Josh Bergasse. A concert version of the show was performed in Seattle earlier this year.
Set during the turn of the 20th century, Gigi tells the story of a free-spirited teenage girl living in Paris who is groomed (in the custom of her family) to serve as a companion to a bored, wealthy playboy until the pair realize they have fallen in love. The musical is based on Colette’s classic novella, the 1951 play by Anita Loos and the 1958 movie musical of the same name. The big screen adaptation of Gigi garnered a then-record-setting nine Oscars, including Best Picture.
The new Great White Way headed production is a re-imagined reboot of the 1973 musical, which played 103 performances on Broadway. Starring Karin Wolfe as Gigi and Daniel Massey as Gaston, the production earned a Tony Award for Best Original Score. Gigi features the memorable tunes “Thank Heaven For Little Girls,” “I Remember It Well,” "The Night They Invented Champagne," “It’s a Bore,” and more.