Bruce Vilanch will star in the UnsungMusicalsCo. reading of I Had a Ball at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.
(© David Gordon)

UnsungMusicalsCo. will offer a special presentation of the 1964 Coney Island musical I Had a Ball as part of its 2014 developmental reading series at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. The show features a book by Tony Award winner Jerome Chodorov (Wonderful Town) and a score by Stan Freeman and Jack Lawrence. Directed by Ben West, the performance will be held at 2:30pm on Thursday, July 24, in the Bruno Walter Auditorium. Admission is free and seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.

Set on the Coney Island boardwalk, I Had a Ball centers on a matchmaking fortune teller who sets off a series of raucous romantic entanglements. The reading will star Emmy Award winner Bruce Vilanch (Hairspray) in the role originated by Buddy Hackett. The cast will also include Natalie Venetia Belcon (Matilda The Musical), with additional casting to be announced shortly. Musical director Fran Minarik will lend new arrangements to the score.

UnsungMusicalsCo. is a New York-based not-for-profit production company dedicated to the preservation of musical theater through the revitalization and presentation of obscure but artistically sound works. The company primarily focuses on works from 1931-71.