Heather Orth and Samantha Bruce will return to Sierra Repertory Theatre this summer after playing mother and daughter Rose and Gypsy Rose Lee to standing ovations in the theatre's season opener, Gypsy. This time, the pair will play cousins Nettie Fowler and Julie Jordan in Sierra Rep's production of the classic Rodgers and Hammerstein musical, Carousel, opening June 29 at the Fallon House Theatre. Los Angeles performer Marc Ginsberg joins Orth and Bruce as Billy Bigelow, the rough but magnetic carnival barker who falls in love with Julie Jordan, a small-town mill girl.
"We saw literally dozens and dozens of actors for the role of Billy Bigelow," said Sierra Rep Artistic Director Scott Viets. "This is a character revered as one of the most demanding and vocally challenging roles in musical theatre. He's a tricky role to cast as the vocal demands are near-operatic and the acting requirements are complex. Marc Ginsburg nailed it over and beyond his competition on all accounts. We're thrilled to have him paired with our SRT company member Samantha Bruce, who is equally gifted.
"The same can be said for another newcomer to our stage, Jessica Reiner-Harris, in the role of Carrie Pipperidge. We needed someone who could be comic, yet smart in a naive way without making the character silly, or dumbed down. Jessica embodies all the qualities I see in the role: sweet, naive, fun and sensitive, but no dummy. And when she sings 'Mister Snow,' it's exactly how the role should be sung. I'm excited for our audiences to hear these glorious tunes sung by truly amazing singers who are also fantastic actors. The experience promises to be rich indeed."
Viets will direct Carousel, playing June 29 through August 19. The musical follows Sierra Rep's production of The 39 Steps. Jim Shine returns to Sierra Rep for the comedy based on Alfred Hitchcock's thriller. Shine also starred in Sierra Rep's Gypsy. Joining Shine are SRT newcomers New Yorker Toby Miller as the dashing hero and comedians David Thornton and Laura Cable as multi- character players.
Thursday and Friday performances begin at 7, Saturday evening performances are at 8 and Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday matinees begin at 2. Ticket prices range from $24 to $30 depending on the day of the performance. For more information or reservations, call Sierra Rep's box office at (209) 532-3120 or visit Sierra Rep at www.sierrarep.org.