Dublin "try out" for JFK musical


A NEW Broadway musical about the Kennedy dynasty, JFK - A Musical Drama, will be staged in the Olympia Theatre, Dublin in April as part of what is called "the regional, try out stage" of new musicals. With the financial backing of some of the bigplayers in a New York production company, Schuberts, and a cast of Irish and British actors, the show will be directed by veteran musical director Larry Fuller and designed by Dublin based Joe Vanek.

"It is a highly unusual event in Dublin theatre that a fully resourced Broadway pro JFK: life to music production gets a try out here. It usually happens in places like Boston or San Diego," comments line producer Ronan Smith, who adds that the huge cost of staging a musical on Broadway necessitates such smaller productions as part of the development process.

But why Dublin? Well, there are three factors firstly, many of the US theatres normally used for regional try outs are booked up for quite some time secondly, the cost of producing the show here works out the same for the producers and thirdly, and perhaps most importantly, the producers hope not to be devoured by a US media circus while they are developing the show. Not too much publicity yet, please, is their message.

Depending on the Dublin audience reaction, the show will then move to London's West End and Broadway. The cast includes Irish actor Stella McCusker as Rose Kennedy, and English actors Maurice Clark (John F. Kennedy) and Monica Ernesti (Jackie Kennedy).

. JFK-A Musical Drama opens on April 22nd.