“Jerry Herman’s buoyant score...has such an embracing loveliness that it trails you right out the door post-show, its romance buoying you like a gentle tide through the Midtown streets”
—The New York Times
“Even the soberest of theater-goer can surrender all hope, for there is no resisting the wildly addictive music and lyrics of Mack & Mabel”
—New York Theater Guide
The Encores! season opens with Mack & Mabel, which tells the story of one of silent film’s first great pioneers, Mack Sennett, played by Douglas Sills (War Paint, The Scarlet Pimpernel), and his first great discovery and muse, the comedienne Mabel Normand, played by Alexandra Socha (Head Over Heels, Spring Awakening). “Sills gives an emotional and vocally rich performance. Socha, also with a big voice and big personality, makes for an endearing and playful Mabel.” (am New York)
Mack makes Mabel a star and love blossoms. But Mack’s insatiable drive to succeed and Mabel’s natural vulnerability—the key to her audience appeal—turn their love affair into a high wire act with no net.
The Mack & Mabel cast album has been treasured by musical theater lovers for decades, though only a few of them ever got to see the actual show. The late Jerry Herman’s score produced “graceful hummability” (The New York Times) in two ballads that have become standards of the American songbook: “Time Heals Everything” and “I Won’t Send Roses.” “If, during that song you feel the urge to stage an intervention to stop Mabel from getting involved with this willful cad, that is to Socha’s credit” (The New York Times).
But many more of the numbers, including “Look What Happened to Mabel” and “Movies Were Movies”—both of which were performed by Sills and Socha in Hey, Look Me Over! as part of the Encores! 2018 season—showcase the upbeat, sunny, irresistible melodies for which the composer of Hello, Dolly! and Mame is so justly celebrated.
New York City Center’s Encores! production of Mack & Mabel is dedicated to the memory of Jerry Herman (1931-2019).
Join the conversation #MackandMabelNYCC
“Jerry Herman’s inspired score, injected with sparkly classics and lesser known gems alike, is here in glorious health, courtesy of a full-throated company of 30, backed by a 28-piece on stage orchestra.”
—New York Theater Guide
When I was approached to direct this show, I went back and listened to the score. I wept. When you feel that kind of love for music like this—only Encores! can give that back to you.
—Josh Rhodes (Mack & Mabel Director)
Book by Michael Stewart
Music and Lyrics by Jerry Herman
Revised version by Francine Pascal
Based on an idea by Leonard Spigelgass
Featuring The Encores! Orchestra
Music Director Rob Berman
Directed and Choreographed by Josh Rhodes
Starring Major Attaway, Michael Berresse, Lilli Cooper, Ben Fankhauser, Jordan Gelber, Evan Kasprzak, Raymond J. Lee, Kevin Ligon, Janet Noh, Allen Lewis Rickman, Douglas Sills, and Alexandra Socha.
With Alex Julian Aquilino, Matt Bauman, Maria Briggs, Julian R. Decker, Sara Esty, Paige Faure, Haley Fish, Leslie Donna Flesner, Garett Hawe, Leah Horowitz, Matt Moisey, Madison Stratton, Diana Vaden, Jacob Keith Watson, Kristen Beth Williams, Darius Wright, Joy Woods, and Richard Riaz Yoder.
Encores! Artistic Director Jack Viertel
Encores! Music Director Rob Berman
Original New York Production Directed and Choreographed by Gower Champion
Major support for Encores! is provided by
Stacey and Eric Mindich Fund for Musical Theater
Roz and Jerry Meyer
The Shubert Foundation
Stephanie and Fred Shuman Fund for Encores!
Support for Mack & Mabel is provided by
Margot and John Ernst
Marta Heflin Foundation
Leo Shull Foundation for the Arts
Additional support is provided by
The Frederick Loewe Foundation
The Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation, Inc.
The SHS Foundation