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show art by Fraver

We’re thrilled to announce the cast of the Encores! production of The Golden Apple! Jerome Moross and John Latouche’s cult classic will star Mikaela Bennett as Penelope, Ashley Brown as Mrs. Juniper/Madame Calypso, Carrie Compere as Lovey Mars/The Siren, Jason Kravits as Menelaus/Scylla, Alli Mauzey as Miss Minerva Oliver/The Scientist, Lindsay Mendez as Helen, N’Kenge as Mother Hare, Ryan Silverman as Ulysses, and Rasta Thomas as Paris.

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April 17, 2017 by New York City Center


William and Jean Eckart’s design for the original show curtain of The Golden Apple. (Reprinted from Andrew B. Harris’ Golden Pen Award-winning book The Performing Set: The Broadway Designs of William and Jean Eckart)

By 1955, people were already lying about having seen The Golden Apple. To have caught the show was a mark of erudition, a sort of homosexual epaulet. The writer James McCourt included the musical on his “free-association ‘50s queer syllabus” alongside Allen Ginsberg, Eartha Kitt, Rancho Notorious, and Captain Marvel. To be counted among New York’s gay elite, he explained, “You had to know the lyrics to all the songs.”

Dubbed “an instantaneous cult item” by the Daily News, the musical’s legend has only grown since the 1950s. True believers covet The Golden Apple; they “guard” it, to borrow the lingo of one Facebook fan page. The show seems fragile, somehow, too divinely sophisticated to survive in the world.

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April 13, 2017 by New York City Center

Big River, The New Yorkers, The Golden Apple

We’re delighted to announce the 2017 season of City Center’s Tony-honored Encores! series, which will kick off with Roger Miller’s Big River from February 8-12, 2017. The season will continue with Cole Porter’s The New Yorkers, running from March 22-26, 2017, and close with Jerome Moross and John Latouche’s The Golden Apple, running from May 10-14, 2017. Encores! Artistic Director Jack Viertel explains why we’re bringing these shows back to life.

The 2017 Encores! season will lead audiences all across the USA—and take a hundred years to do it. Our 24th season features three distinct American regions and three historic time periods. Beginning with Big River, which is set along the Mississippi River Valley in the 1840s, we’ll move to the East Coast for Cole Porter’s 1930 Prohibition jape The New Yorkers, and conclude with a visit to the Pacific Northwest, where The Golden Apple retells the stories of The Iliad and The Odyssey, setting them at the base of that other Mount Olympus, at the end of the Spanish-American War.

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May 10, 2016 by New York City Center
Cynthia Nixon

Cynthia Nixon, photographed by Maarten De Boer.

Tony and Emmy Award winner Cynthia Nixon has played everyone from Jean Brodie to Eleanor Roosevelt, but the role that got away was Agnes Gooch. I’m too old now, but I always really wanted to do Gooch,” she says. “Because if she sings badly, it’s fine, you know?” If the third lead in Mame seems like an unlikely Everest, keep in mind that Nixon is obsessed with musicals. She and Sarah Jessica Parker used to sing showtunes during long nights on the set of “Sex and the City,” and these days she still listens mostly to cast recordings. For her dream Encores! show, Nixon selected The Golden Apple, Jerome Moross and John Latouche’s exquisite, brainy “opera for Broadway,” which retells the Greek myths of Helen, Paris, Ulysses, and Penelope through the lens of American folklore. Although the 1954 musical closed on Broadway after four months, it has since acquired a merry, fanatical band of admirers.

CITY CENTER: How did you discover The Golden Apple?
CYNTHIA NIXON: My mother. I was very immersed in musicals growing up—which is what Steve, the play that I’m directing at The New Group, is so much about: people who live for musicals, and live through musicals. I certainly fit into that category, and I’ve done it to my children. (laughs) I’ve also done it to my wife, who was not a musical comedy person at all before she met me. My mother steeped me in musical theater, and we used to play the Golden Apple record. Then I was lucky enough to see a production of it, which is unusual, at the York Theater [in 1978] when I was still a kid. I knew the show inside out by the time I saw it.

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November 13, 2015 by New York City Center