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Sondheim's Into the Woods Added to City Center's Encores! Lineup

Lear deBessonet is the new artistic director of New York City Center's Encores! series.

Encores! artistic director Jack Viertel with Lear deBessonet.
(© David Gordon)

New York City Center has announced Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's Into the Woods as part of its Encores! series.

Led by artistic director Lear deBessonet, music director Rob Berman, and creative producing director Clint Ramos, City Center's Encores! series will broaden its repertoire to include varied expressions of musical theater revivals: hidden gems from the Broadway canon, productions where artists reclaim work through their own personal lens, and celebrations that look at the ways classic musicals connect us. Into the Woods represents the third of these ideas and ushers in a new tradition at City Center celebrating iconic American musicals.

"If the reason to revive a hidden gem is to discover it," said deBessonet in a statement, "then the reason to revive a beloved musical that holds enormous meaning to so many people is to discover what we have in common, and how our experience with these shows connects us. One of the things I find remarkable about musical theater is the space it holds in America — against all odds, providing a touchpoint of commonality. Among its many rich layers, Into the Woods is a fable about how humans pursue their wishes, and what happens when they set aside their individual wishes to create a greater community wish."

Other productions in the Encores! lineup include Cy Coleman, Ira Gasman, and David Newman's The Life, adapted and directed by Billy Porter, as well as The Tap Dance Kid, written by Henry Krieger, Robert Lorick, and Charles Blackwell, directed by Kenny Leon, adapted by Lydia Diamond, and choreographed by Jared Grimes.