Posted by Bruce Miller
There's an old saw that goes "Nine tenths of directing is casting"--the point being that if a director is fortunate enough to be able to cast the right actors in the right roles, everything else sort of takes care of itself. Of course, this is overly simplistic crazy talk. Yeah. But it's also kinda true.
In my own experience, I'm reminded of Do Lord Remember Me, Crimes of the Heart, The Normal Heart, The Little Foxes, Boleros for the Disenchanted, and the Smoke on the Mountain trilogy. Somehow I wound up with perfect, surprising, wonderful casts in each of those shows, and my job in rehearsals became refreshingly joyful and easy.
The same is true with My Fair Lady. Will any theatre anywhere have a more perfect cast for this irreplacable classic? I don't think so. Of course, these are the words of a lovesick director so they cannot be trusted. Most of you already know to take this and everything I ever write with a grain of salt. If you didn't know that before, you now have been so advised.
Having admitted that, here's some gospel truth you can take to the bank. Any stage director who has the privilege to work with Stacey Cabaj, Joe Inscoe, Jason Marks, Suzanne Pollard, Matthew Costello, Lauren Leinhaas Cook and Ben Houghton should count him/herself blessed. And having a supporting cast that includes Brian Baez, Andy Boothby, Dawn Hall, Robin Harris, Michael Hawke, Maggie Horan, Christie Jackson, Paul Major, Mark Persinger, Russell Rowland, Ali Thibodeau, Alana Thomas, Durron Tyre and Ingrid Young ... well, that's just an embarrassment of riches.
Not only are these people talented, experienced and smart, they're fun to be around, they expect serious and focused work from each other, and they give every moment of rehearsal and performance everything they've got.
The show is going great guns, and prompting among the most enthusiastic audience feedback (phone calls, emails etc.) that I've ever encountered. These are the first people I need to thank. And I do so, now, with a full and happy heart.