2 Pianos 4 Hands set for City Theatre stage
City Theatre will present a brand new production of the smash comedy 2 Pianos 4 Hands, a melodic adventure featuring music ranging from Bach to Billy Joel and Elton John.
Co-written by Ted Dykstra and Richard Greenblatt and directed by Tom Frey, 2 Pianos 4 Hands is a City Events special presentation that will run on City Theatre’s Mainstage from November 30 to December 22, with an Opening Night performance on Friday, Dec. 6 at 8 p.m.
For anyone who ever dreamed big—and then didn’t quite make it, this is the riotous story of Ted and Richard, childhood friends who spent years chasing the same goal: concert pianist stardom. Two actors, two pianos, and dozens of characters grace the stage in this hilarious portrayal of pushy parents, eccentric teachers, and the triumphs and tortures of being extraordinarily good musicians.
“We’ve had our eyes on 2 Pianos 4 Hands for a long time,” says Tracy Brigden, City Theatre’s artistic director. “It demands not only top-notch acting, but also excellent musical talent, and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to create a brand new production with an exceptional duo.
“The show has been a hit worldwide, and its universal themes will strike a chord with anyone who ever had aspirations of professional success, whether star musician or sports pro.”
2 Pianos 4 Hands features Bob Stillman and Christopher Tocco.
Tom Frey, the show’s director, returns to City Theatre after performing as the accompanist and a variety of characters in the world premiere of Breath & Imagination (March 2013), co-produced with Hartford Stage. City Theatre’s production of 2 Pianos 4 Hands marks his twelfth as director. He began his association with this show more than 15 years ago, subsequently performing it nearly 800 times all over the United States and Canada.
Other credits include Arms and The Man, The Admirable Crichton, and The 39 Steps with Peterborough Players; Dirty Blonde at the Cleveland Play House and Pittsburgh Public Theater; Souvenir at 7 Angels Theatre; Woman In Black and Free Man Of Color at the Penguin Repertory; Evelyn Oakleigh in Anything Goes and Billy Bishop in Billy Bishop Goes To War.
Mr. Frey most recently played Wilson Mizner in the American regional theatre premiere of Sondheim’s Road Show at Stages Repertory, Houston. He graduated from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts Professional Actor Training Program and lives in Astoria, NY.
Actor-pianist Bob Stillman has been nominated twice for Tony Awards®—as an actor for his performance in Claudia Shear’s Dirty Blonde, and as a contributing composer/lyricist for Urban Cowboy The Musical. Also on Broadway, he has appeared as Molina in Kiss of the Spider Woman (opposite Vanessa Williams), as Gould in Grey Gardens, and as Erik in Tommy Tune’s Grand Hotel.
He received a Drama Desk nomination for the 2011 revival of Michael John LaChiusa’s Hello Again, and starred in Adam Guettel’s Saturn Returns. As a singer/songwriter he has appeared in many New York venues. TV credits include “The Good Wife,” “Law & Order,” “Star Trek Voyager,” “Guiding Light,” and “Allegra’s Window.”
Actor-pianist Christopher Tocco has been seen in One Slight Hitch; War Music and A Christmas Carol; The Lion in Winter; The Mystery of Edwin Drood; and internationally in Zorro: The Musical. NYC credits include The Poor of New York; A Dream Play; The Satin Slipper. On TV, he has appeared in “Elementary.”
In New York, Mr. Tocco has co-developed new ensemble works with semi:theatre and in artist residency at Mabou Mines. He continues work with Theatre Group Dzieci and SF/NYC performance group Odyssey Works, who develop immersive theatrical experiences for an audience-of-one. He received his M.F.A. from American Conservatory Theatre.
Tickets are $35 to $55 and are available at the City Theatre Box Office, 1300 Bingham St ., 412-431-CITY (2489) or citytheatrecompany.org.