Book and Lyrics by Iris Rainer Dart
Music by Mike Stoller and Artie Butler
Produced and Directed by Scott & Shannon Guggenheim
Musical Directed by Stephen Guggenheim and Tom Tomasello
Recommended for audiences age 10 and up
West Coast Premiere
Previews: April 14-22
Performances: April 26-May 13
$25 – $58
Penned by Iris Rainer Dart (acclaimed TV writer, playwright, and author of Beaches) and legendary composers Mike Stoller and Artie Butler, this fiercely funny and deeply moving new musical spans three generations and celebrates the importance of learning from our past and the power of laughter. A West Coast premiere, this moving production deftly moves through timelines in 1930s Warsaw and 1970s New York where darling of the Yiddish Theatre, Raisel Rabinowitz, brings the people in her picture to life taking the audience on an unforgettable journey.
Raisel Rabinowitz – also known as Bubbie – recalls her life in the Yiddish theater during the time of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. By telling her stories to her granddaughter Jenny, the audience is ripped from the present and thrown back into a time when being who you truly were could mean mortal peril. The people in this picture are “The Warsaw Gang,” a ragtag troupe of actors barely surviving, but finding solace in making life a little less unbearable for their fellow Jews amidst the pogroms and poverty of Poland in the 1930s. As The People in the Picture aptly displays, talent is sometimes all artists have left. The emotional rollercoaster brought about as the characters laugh and cry their way toward facing their skeletons and finding closure puts audiences on edge as they search for the next clue in the story.
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The People In The Picture has a book and lyrics by Iris Rainer Dart, the acclaimed novelist, TV writer, and playwright. Dart’s most well-known book, Beaches, was turned into a hit movie starring Bette Midler and is being readied for its London debut as a West End musical. Composers Mike Stoller and Artie Butler bring their decades of experience writing and arranging hit songs and emotional anthems to this production, thus creating a score filled with melodies that will stay with audiences long after the final crescendo. Stoller, as half of the team Leiber and Stoller, has written many of rock-and-roll’s most iconic songs (“Stand By Me,” “Jailhouse Rock,” and Peggy Lee’s brilliant “Is That All There Is?” while Butler arranged hit recordings for an incredible number of legendary singers including Louis Armstrong, Barry Manilow, Bette Midler, Joe Cocker, Neil Sedaka, Andy Williams, Neil Diamond, Dionne Warwick, Gladys Knight & The Pips and Natalie Cole … as well as composing scores for film and TV.
*Members of Actors’ Equity Association