Peter Palmer and Edith Adamsin Li’l Abner(PhotoFest)
Peter Palmer and Edith Adams
in Li’l Abner
(PhotoFest)
Peter Palmer, who played the title role in the original Broadway production and the subsequent movie version of the Johnny Mercer-Gene dePaul musical Li'l Abner, will perform on stage in New York for the first time in nearly 30 years in Berg/Off-B'way, a celebration of the work of composer and lyricist Neil Berg (The Prince and the Pauper) to be held at the Lamb's Theatre on Monday, August 11 at 8pm. Tickets are priced at $40 and all proceeds from the event will benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.

Palmer will join a cast of Broadway stars including Brian d'Arcy James (Sweet Smell of Success), Darius DeHaas (Songs for a New World), Megan McGinnis (Beauty and the Beast), Rita Harvey (Phantom of the Opera), William Michals (The Scarlet Pimpernel), Michael Lanning (The Civil War), Jeri Sager (Cats), Judy McLane (Chess), and many others in performing songs by Berg. Rob Evan (Jekyll & Hyde) will host the event and a nine-piece band will accompany the singers.

Li'l Abner was a hit when it opened on Broadway in 1956; in addition to Palmer, the stars included Edith Adams, Stubby Kaye, Tina Louise, Charlotte Rae, and Julie Newmar. (The show's original cast recording was reissued on CD by Sony/Columbia last year.) Palmer's last Broadway appearance was opposite Carol Channing in Lorelei in 1974.

The Lamb's Theatre is located at 130 West 44th Street in Manhattan, between Sixth and Seventh avenues. To order tickets, visit www.smarttix.com or call 212-868-4444.