Pippin: The Story of an Extraordinary Man Has An Extraordinary History
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This coming week, from Mar. 17 to 19, PV Theatre will proudly present an iconic Broadway classic on their stage: Pippin.
This timeless tale tells the story of prince Pippin and his adventures as he tries to find fulfillment and purpose in his life. His story is told by a group of traveling players, with the Leading Player guiding Pippin along his lifelong journey.
This show is not only rich in story, but in history as well.
Pippin has been performed several times on the PV stage but has not been performed in many years. The musical was last presented in 2004 at PV, before current directors Tom and Merielle Lupfer had taken over the program. The Lupfers emphasized what an impactful experience seeing the show was, allowing them to rethink what theatre could actually be. This is why the show is gracing the stage yet again.
Composer Stephen Schwartz, of Godspell fame, in the 1970s, sought a producer for a show he had created as a student titled Pippin, Pippin. Stuart Ostrow agreed to produce it if Schwartz wrote a new script. Not only did he do that by hiring playwright Roger Hirson, but he created a new score to go with it. The show was rechristened The Adventures of Pippin.
Soon after, Schwartz hired the legendary Bob Fosse to direct and choreograph the show. Fosse, known for his darker material, made many changes to the more lighthearted original. He introduced the Leading Player, a pivotal role, and changed several scenes.
The show opened in October of 1972 and won five Tony awards before closing. The show was revived on Broadway in 2013, opening on Apr. 25, 2013. After it closed on Jan. 4, 2015, the show went on a national tour from 2014 to 2016. It is currently on its second national tour.
“I think the story is sort of familiar and universal, which is what makes this show one that people have loved for a long time because it is about growing up and its about finding your place in the world and what a difficult journey that can be,” Mrs. Lupfer said.
To help bring the show to life, the Lupfers invited Mia Walker, who was the Assistant Director of the 2013 revival, to speak to the cast about the show and theatre in general, giving the cast new insight on the Leading Player’s mysterious ways and Pippin’s journey for fulfillment.
Walker’s discussion supplemented the endless hours the cast has spent practicing circus and magic tricks. The cast has also spent months learning songs and dances from the show which has touched and impacted many.
That especially rings true today, in an age of confusion, years after the show made its Broadway debut. So, join PV Theatre on a journey that you may soon need to make yourself. You’ll be surprised what you find waiting for you.
Pippin will be on the PV Theatre stage on Mar. 17 at 7 p.m., Mar. 18 at 1 and 7 p.m., and Mar. 19 at 1 p.m.
Tickets will be sold at the doors or can be pre-bought here.