John & Jen - starring Rachel Tucker
A new updated musical at Southwark Playhouse directed by Guy Retallack with orchestrations by Jason Robert Brown
John & Jen’ is an emotional rollercoaster of a musical that explores the dynamics of family relationships. This production is the world premiere of a brand new updated version of the show by Andrew Lippa and Tom Greenwald, with orchestrations by Jason Robert Brown & Andrew Lippa.
1985. John & Jen, brother and sister, born seven years apart, grow up together, totally inseparable. Jen makes a “forever pact” with her little brother to always protect him against anything and anyone, including their own dad.
2005. Jen, alone in Canada with her baby boy whom she has named John, a living memorial to the brother she failed to protect.
The beautiful and haunting score emotionally captures the zeitgeist of contemporary America.
Andrew Lippa & Tom Greenwald said about the production: “We are absolutely delighted that Bray Productions are bringing ‘John & Jen’ to the stage as part of the resurgence of London theater this summer, particularly under the guidance of this extraordinary cast and creative team. We’ve also taken the opportunity to make some updates to the script, which we hope will give the piece a fresh jolt of relevance. But most of all, we’re so excited that live audiences will once again get to see our show!”
Jen – Rachel Tucker
John – Lewis Cornay
Creative Team: Director Guy Retallack, Musical Supervisor Michael Bradley, Musical Director Bob Broad, Scenic & Costume Design Natalie Johnson, Sound Design Andrew Johnson, Production Manager Matt Harper, Stage Manager Robyn-Amber Manners, Casting Leon Kay Casting, Produced by Bray Productions.
28 July – 21 August
Monday to Saturday – 8pm with matinees on Tuesdays & Saturdays at 3.30pm.
Previews – Wednesday 28, Thursday 29 July, Friday 30 & Saturday 31 (matinee)
Rachel Tucker is an Olivier-nominated actress who most recently, was starring in ‘Come From Away ‘at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre on Broadway playing the role of Annette/Beverley Bass, the role she originated here in London and for which she received a nomination for Best Actress in a Supporting Role in a Musical at the 2019 Olivier Awards and Best Supporting Actress in a Musical at the 2020 WhatsOnStage Awards. Theatre credits: ‘A Killer Party’ (streaming), ‘Songs For a New World’ (London Palladium & streaming), Elphaba in ‘Wicked’ (West End, Broadway and the London 10th anniversary cast); ‘Two’ by Jim Cartwright at the Bridge House Theatre; Meg Dawson in Sting’s musical ‘The Last Ship’ directed by Joe Mantello (Neil Simon Theatre, New York and Bank of America Theatre, Chicago); ‘Communicating Doors’ (Menier Chocolate Factory); ‘Farragut North’ (Southwark Playhouse) and Meat in ‘We Will Rock You’ (Dominion). TV: Sharon Collins in ‘Informer’ (BBC1/Neal Street productions); ‘I’d Do Anything’ (BBC), where she reached the semi-final stages for the role of Nancy. Rachel’s debut solo album ‘The Reason’ was launched in 2013 at her first sell-out concert at the St. James Theatre and she returned to the St. James with her one-woman show ‘Rachel Tucker: Back from Broadway’ for which she won a West End Wilma Award in 2015. In 2017 Rachel launched her first solo tour, ‘Rachel Tucker: Live in Concert’, in London, UK and Ireland alongside releasing a new album ‘On the Road’ for which she also won the West End Wilma Award for Best Cabaret/Solo show.
Training: Guildford School of Acting. Theatre credits: Sam Weiss, ‘Ps I’m A Terrible Person’ (Cockpit Theatre), Elder Davis/ Cross, ‘The Book of Mormon’ (Prince of Wales Theatre), The Elephant’s Child, ‘Just So’ (Barn Theatre), The Bellboy/ Wallace Hartley, ‘Titanic the Musical’ (UK Tour), Ryder, ‘Paw Patrol Live: Race to the Rescue’, Nickelodeon (UK ARENA TOUR), Louis Leonowens, ‘The King and I’ (Royal Albert Hall), Kurt Von-Trapp, ‘The Sound of Music’ (London Palladium), Michael Banks, ‘Mary Poppins’ (Prince Edward Theatre). Lewis is the writer behind OnComm award-winning and Offie finalist ‘Snowflake’. He is currently developing work with the Soho Writers Lab as well as working on various commissions coming out later this year.
Andrew Lippa (Music & Book)
Andrew Lippa’s hit song ‘Evil Like Me’ appears in Disney’s ‘Descendants’. Written for Kristin Chenoweth the film’s soundtrack hit #1 on the Billboard 200 album chart, is currently #1 on the iTunes and Billboard soundtrack charts, and has been viewed over 9 million times on YouTube. He wrote the music and lyrics for ‘Big Fish’, book by John August, directed and
choreographed by Susan Stroman, which played the Neil Simon Theater on Broadway. His epic oratorio for men’s chorus, orchestra and soloists, ‘I Am Harvey Milk’ (words and music), was premiered by the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus and the recording, released in October, 2013, reached number 2 on the iTunes Classical Chart. ‘I Am Harvey Milk’ was presented at Los Angeles’ Disney Hall in July, 2014 and in New York City at Lincoln Center in October, 2014 starring Mr. Lippa as Harvey Milk. It has had over 20 productions across the USA. He wrote he Tony-nominated music and lyrics for the Broadway musical ‘The Addams Family’, book by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice (‘Jersey Boys’), which opened in April of 2010 and starred Nathan Lane and Bebe Neuwirth and has since been seen in over 1,000 productions worldwide. Mr. Lippa wrote the music for the Broadway production of Aaron Sorkin’s play (‘The Social Network’, ‘A Few Good Men’) ‘The Farnsworth Invention’ directed by Des McAnuff (‘Jersey Boys’). ‘Asphalt Beach’ (music and lyrics) was premiered at Northwestern University by the American Music Theatre Project in October, 2006. ‘The Wild Party’ (book/music/lyrics) was given its world premiere in 2000 at the Manhattan Theater Club in New York City. ‘The Wild Party’ won the Outer Critics Circle Award for best Off-Broadway musical of the season and Mr. Lippa won the 2000 Drama Desk Award for best music. 2004 saw the premiere of ‘A Little Princess’ (book and lyrics by Brian Crawley) at Theatreworks in Palo Alto, CA. In 1999 he contributed three new songs to the Broadway version of ‘You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown’ (including ‘My New Philosophy’ for Tony Award winner Kristin Chenoweth) and created all new arrangements. He wrote the music and co-wrote the book (with Tom Greenwald) for ‘John & Jen’, which premiered in New York City in 1995 at The Lamb’s Theater and had a successful revival presented by The Keen Company in 2015 starring Kate Baldwin. Mr. Lippa is proud to have been music director for Kristin Chenoweth since 1999 for many of her greatest concerts. He conducted/played her sold-out shows at the Metropolitan Opera House in NYC in 2007, at Carnegie Hall in 2004, and at the Donmar Warehouse in London in 2002. He has conducted the San Francisco, Chicago, and St. Louis Symphony Orchestras for Ms. Chenoweth, among others. Additionally, he is an accomplished singer having been heard in many venues in New York and, in 2005, as a guest artist at the Adelaide Cabaret Convention in Adelaide, Australia. Recordings include Julia Murney’s CD ‘I’m Not Waiting’ (producer, 3 songs), ‘The Addams Family ‘(Decca Broadway), ‘Big Fish’ (Broadway Records), ‘The Wild Party (RCA Victor) which he also produced, ‘You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown’ (RCA Victor) which earned him a Grammy Award nomination, ‘The Addams Family’ (Decca Broadway), ‘A Little Princess’ (Sh-k-boom), and ‘John & Jen’ (Broadway Records). Jazz phenom Peter Cincotti recorded the song ‘Raise The Roof’ on his CD titled On The Moon (Phil Ramone, producer). In addition, Mr. Lippa produced the original cast recording of ‘Bat Boy’ for RCA Victor and his singing voice can be heard on ‘The Sondheim Album’ on Fynsworth Alley and ‘If I Sing’ on PS Classics. Vocal selections from ‘The Addams Family’, ‘Big Fish’, ‘A Little Princess’, ‘The Wild Party’ and ‘John & Jen’ are published by Hal Leonard. Hal Leonard also released The Andrew Lippa Song Book in Winter, 2013. Awards include a Tony and Grammy nomination, sharing in an Emmy for the Nickelodeon TV series ‘The Wonder Pets,’ the Gilman/Gonzalez-Falla Theater Foundation Award, ASCAP’s Richard Rodgers/New Horizons Award, The Drama Desk, The Outer Critics Circle and second place for the Alice B. Deucey Award for all-around outstanding fifth-grader (lost to Cynthia Fink). Memberships include ASCAP, Actor’s Equity and the American Federation of Musicians. A graduate of the University of Michigan, Mr. Lippa serves as president of The Dramatists Guild Fund. He was born in Leeds, England but grew up in suburban Detroit. www.andrewlippa.com
Tom Greenwald (Book & Lyrics)
Tom is a Creative Director at Spotco, a theatrical advertising and marketing company. Some of his current clients include ‘Rent’, ‘Chicago’, ‘Dirty Rotten Scoundrels’, ‘Avenue Q’ and ‘All Shook Up’. Tom’s first screenplay, ‘Sweet Emotion’, was optioned by Jeffrey Seller and Kevin McCollum, the producers of ‘Rent’, and he is currently at work on a second. He lives with his wife and three sons in Connecticut.
Guy Retallack (Director)
Guy founded the Bridgehouse Theatre SE20 with his wife, actress Rachel Tucker. He has directed ‘Twelfth Night’ (Bridge House Theatre SE20, The Globe, Shakespeare Festival, Neuss, Germany, The Shakespeare festival, Serbia) ‘Macbeth’ (nominated for Best Director: Broadway World, & the Offies 2014), his own adaptation of ‘A Christmas Carol’ (2019) and the UK premieres of ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’, (2014/15 BHT SE20 and national tour), ‘A Christmas Carol More or Less’ (2015), ‘Another Night Before Christmas’ (2016) (Best Christmas Show Broadwayworld 2016), and ‘Plaid Tidings’ (2018). Guy directed David Hare’s ‘The Secret Rapture’ in the West End for Bill Kenwright, ‘Liberty’ by Glyn Maxwell at Shakespeare’s Globe and ‘Future Me’ by Stephen Brown (Theatre503 & ACE tour). For Climar Productions Guy has directed Steve Schaclin’s ‘The Last Session’ and the multi award-winning ‘Thrill Me’ by Stephen Dolginoff, which has played throughout the UK, including The Other Palace, Arcola, Tristan Bates, Charing Cross, Edinburgh and internationally (2011-2018) Guy studied at Central and was an assistant and associate director to Stephen Daldry, Max Stafford-Clark Guy, and Howard Davies at the National Theatre.Guy is regarded as one of the UK’s top acting coaches. https://actinginlondon.co.uk/acting-coach-london/ Guy’s website can be found at www.guyretallack.com The performing arts, now more than ever, need a place to develop excellent practice and James Huish has been at the forefront in giving students based in Northern Ireland the opportunity to develop themselves with a wide variety of skilled practitioners. I am delighted to become a patron of the JAMES HUISH Academy for Performing Arts.
John & Jen
Music by Andrew Lippa
Book by Andrew Lippa and Tom Greenwald
Lyrics by Tom Greenwald
77-85 Newington Causeway,
London SE1 6BD
Wednesday 28th July – Saturday 21st August
Monday to Saturday – 8pm
Matinees Tuesdays & Saturdays at 3.30pm
Previews – Wednesday 28, Thursday 29 July,
Friday 30 & Saturday 31 (matinee)
Monday 2 & Tuesday 3 August at 8pm
£22 (£18 Concessions)
All previews £14
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