Far From Heaven at Playwrights Horizons

Williamstown Production Transfers to New York

By: - May 13, 2013

Far Far Far Far Far

The Playwrights Horizons (Tim Sanford, Artistic Director; Leslie Marcus, Managing Director) presents the World Premiere production of Far From HeavenThe musical was previewed last summer at the Williamstown Theatre Festival. It transfers to New York with the five lead actors from that production.

Opening Night is Sunday, June 2 at 7PM. The limited engagement subscription run will play through Sunday, June 30 at Playwrights Horizons’ Mainstage Theater (416 West 42nd Street). 

It features a book by Tony Award winner and two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist Richard Greenberg (Take Me Out, Three Days of Rain, the current The Assembled Parties), music by Tony Award nominee Scott Frankel (Grey Gardens at PH and on Broadway, Finding Neverland) and lyrics by Tony Award nominee Michael Korie (Grey Gardens at PH and on Broadway, The Grapes of Wrath, Finding Neverland). 

The production is choreographed by Alex Sanchez (Giant, Fiorello!) and directed by three-time Tony Award nominee Michael Greif (Grey Gardens at PH and on Broadway; Rent, Next to Normal, Giant).

The musical is based on the Focus Features/Vulcan Productions motion picture Far From Heaven, written and directed by Todd Haynes.  

Headlining the cast are Tony Award nominee Kelli O’Hara (nominated for her acclaimed performances in The Light in the Piazza, The Pajama Game, South Pacific and the current Nice Work If You Can Get It), Steven Pasquale (The Spitfire Grill at PH; reasons to be pretty on Broadway; The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide… at The Public; Drama Desk and Outer Critic Circle nominations for A Man of No Importance at Lincoln Center;  The Grapes of Wrath at Carnegie Hall) and Isaiah Johnson (Peter and the Starcatcher; The Merchant of Venice on Broadway). 

Steven Pasquale will return to Williamstown this summer as the lead in a new music also based on a film Bridges of Madison County.

The musical had a Preview Production run at the Williamstown Theatre Festival last summer, also featuring Ms. O’Hara, Mr. Pasquale, Mr. Adams, Ms. Bernstine and Ms. Stout. 

They are joined by J.B. Adams (Parade, Beauty & the Beast, Me & My Girl on Broadway; Annie Warbucks Off-Broadway; the film Far From Heaven), Marinda Anderson (From the Inside, Out at NY Fringe Festival; Freedom Train for TheatreWorks USA), Olivier Award nominee Nancy Anderson (Wonderful Town, A Class Act on Broadway; Kiss Me, Kate in London; Yank! Off-Broadway), Elainey Bass (Radio City Christmas Spectacular), Obie Award winner Quincy Tyler Bernstine (In the Next Room… on Broadway; Ruined at MTC), Justin Scott Brown (Les Misérables, Spring Awakening national tours), Obie Award winner Alma Cuervo (PH’s The Heidi Chronicles and Isn’t It Romantic?; Titanic, Cabaret, Women on the Verge… on Broadway; Road Show at The Public; Wicked national tour), Korey Jackson (Wild with Happy at The Public; “Homeland”), Jake Lucas (Newsies), James Moye (Million Dollar Quartet, Ragtime, White Christmas, on Broadway; Happiness Off-Broadway), Julianna Rigoglioso (Pippi Longstocking Off-Broadway; Mary Poppins national tour, The Smurfs), Sarah Jane Shanks (Wicked, Promises Promises, Shrek, Wonderful Town, The Apple Tree on Broadway), Tess Soltau (The Addams Family on Broadway; Into the Woods for The Public/Shakespeare in the Park), Mary Stout (Cather County at PH; Jane Eyre, Beauty & the Beast, Me & My Girl on Broadway) and Victor Wallace (Mamma Mia! on Broadway, Les Misérables and The Phantom of the Opera national tours). 

The 18-member cast is the largest cast ever assembled for a Playwrights Horizons production.

Cathy Whitaker (Ms. O’Hara) seems to be the picture-perfect wife and mother in 1957 suburban Connecticut. But roiling beneath the surface, secret longings and forbidden desires cause her world to unravel, with incendiary consequences. With a lush score that is both jazz-inflected and hauntingly lyrical, Far From Heaven is a powerful story of romance, betrayal and intolerance, as a woman grapples with her identity in a society on the verge of upheaval.

The musical  features scenic design by Tony Award nominee Allen Moyer, costume design by five-time Tony Award winner Catherine Zuber, lighting design by Tony Award winner Kenneth Posner, sound design by Nevin Steinberg, projection design by Peter Nigrini, orchestrations by Tony Award winner Bruce Coughlin and wig and hair design by David Brian Brown.  Musical Director is Lawrence Yurman and Production Stage Manager is Judith Schoenfeld.

Far From Heaven was commissioned, developed, and produced through the Playwrights Horizons Musicals in Partnership Initiative, with leadership support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Through this initiative, the musical had a Preview Production run at the Williamstown Theatre Festival last summer, also featuring Ms. O’Hara, Mr. Pasquale, Mr. Adams, Ms. Bernstine and Ms. Stout.  The program allows Playwrights Horizons to develop new works of musical theater, each in partnership with a Regional theater – wholly within the not-for-profit system.  This seven-year program aims to commission at least three new works of musical theater and develop and produce three or four full-scale productions.  Each of the musicals will be produced both by one specific Regional partner and at Playwrights Horizons. 

Generous support for Far from Heaven was also provided by The Laurents / Hatcher Foundation, Stacey & Eric Mindich Fund for New Musicals at Playwrights Horizons, Joanne & Daniel C. Smith, Cathy & Stephen Weinroth, National Alliance for Musical Theatre and many more.

The original 2002 film, which stars Julianne Moore, Dennis Quaid, Dennis Haysbert and Patricia Clarkson, earned over 100 awards, honors and nominations.  It was nominated for 4 Academy Awards including Best Actress (Ms. Moore), Best Original Screenplay (Todd Haynes), Best Cinematography (Edward Lachman) and Best Original Score (Elmer Bernstein), and was named one of the 10 Best Movies of the Decade by Entertainment Weekly.  It was also named Best Film of the Year by the New York Film Critics Circle Awards, Chicago Film Critics Association Awards, Independent Spirit Awards and the Village Voice, among many others.  Far From Heaven also earned 4 Golden Globe nominations including Best Screenplay, a Writers Guild of America Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay and a bevy of additional awards for leading actress Julianne Moore, including one from the National Board of Review Award and nominations from the Screen Actors Guild and the Golden Globes.

With Far From Heaven, Playwrights Horizons continues its commitment to developing unique and ground-breaking new musicals, including Grey Gardens, James Joyce’s The Dead, Floyd Collins, Assassins, Once on This Island and Sunday in the Park with George. 

This production reunites the theater company with Mr. Frankel, Mr. Korie and Mr. Greif, the composer, lyricist and director of Grey Gardens, which was one of Playwrights Horizons’ most heralded original musicals.  The project also marks the long-awaited return to the theater company of Mr. Greenberg, who was last represented there in 1987 with his play The Maderati.

The performance schedule will be Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 7PM, Thursdays and Fridays at 8PM, Saturdays at 2:30 PM & 8PM and Sundays at 2:30 PM & 7:30 PM.  Both the Wednesday, May 8 and Tuesday, May 28 evening performances have 8PM curtains and the Sunday, June 2 matinee has an early 2PM curtain. 

Single tickets, starting at $80, may be purchased online via By phone at (212) 279-4200 (Noon-8pm), or in person at the Ticket Central Box Office, 416 West 42nd Street (between Ninth & Tenth Avenues).

Reflecting Playwrights Horizons’ ongoing commitment to making its productions more affordable to younger audiences, the theater company will offer HOTtix, $25 rush tickets, subject to availability, day of performance only, starting one hour before showtime to patrons aged 30 and under. Proof of age required. One ticket per person, per purchase.  Cash only.  HOTtix is one of Playwrights Horizons’ popular Arts Access initiatives, which allow the institution to reach out to those who may not be able to afford the cost of a full-price theater ticket.  This program is supported, in part, by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and The McGraw-Hill Companies.

A special open captioned performance  for theatergoers who are deaf and hard of hearing will be held on the Saturday, June 8 matinee at 2:30 PM.  Funding for this program is provided, in part, by the Theodore H. Barth Foundation, and TDF and TAP Plus, which is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

How to order tickets for the open captioned performance:

●    Online: log on to

●    Phone: call Ticket Central at (212) 279-4200 (Noon-8pm daily) via Relay Service (800) 421-1220

●    TTY:    call Ticket Central at (212) 279-4200 (noon-8pm daily) via Relay Service (800) 662-1220

In addition, special Post-Performance Discussions with members of the creative team will take place immediately after the following three performances: Sunday matinee, May 12 at 2:30 PM; Friday evening, May 17 at 8PM; and Wednesday evening, May 22 at 7PM.

Three subscription packages to Playwrights Horizons’ 2013/2014 season are now available:  a 6-show Subscription package (starting at $230 for renewing subscribers, four Mainstage and two Peter Jay Sharp Theater productions); FlexPass (4+ tickets, $45-50 per ticket); and Membership ($55 membership fee + one ticket at $40 or less for each show, as desired).  In addition to discounts on all Mainstage season attractions, subscribers receive priority booking and seating, ticket exchange privileges, parking and dining discounts, and exclusive mailings of Playwrights Horizons Bulletins.  Packages will be available at

Patron Program Memberships begin at $1,500 (all but $550 is tax-deductible) and include two house seats to all six Playwrights Horizons productions reserved only for Patrons, as well as a variety of exclusive benefits including invitations to attend special events with artists, staff and board members. 

For ticket information to all Playwrights Horizons productions, call Ticket Central at (212) 279-4200, Noon to 8 pm daily, or purchase online at

Twitter: @phnyc