Circle Theatre will introduce its newest production this Sunday with a visit from Broadway legend Marvin Hamlisch.
The three-time Oscar, four-time Grammy, four-time Emmy, three-time Golden Globe and one-time Tony winner will attend a champagne brunch before the post-Broadway regional premiere of Sweet Smell of Success. Hamlisch composed the score for the musical, which will run through June 25 at Circle Theatre.
Following the performance, he will participate in a question-and-answer session led by Chicago journalist Jonathan Abarbanel of The Windy City Times and Chicago Public Radio.
Peter Storms, Managing Director of Circle Theatre, said he sent a letter to Hamlisch as well as John Guare, author of the book upon which the play is based, and Craig Carnelia, who wrote the play’s lyrics, inviting them to see Circle’s production of the show.
He first received an email from Guare kindly declining his offer, but a couple days later got a voicemail from Hamlisch on his cel phone.
“[We] finally nailed down May 28 as [a day] that would fit into both his busy schedule and our crazy schedule at the theater,” wrote Storms in an email.
Hamlisch is perhaps best known for his show, Chorus Line, which won a Pulitzer Prize and is scheduled to make its return to Broadway this fall. He has composed Broadway hits including They’re Playing Our Song and Imaginary Friends, as well as over 40 movie scores, including The Goodbye Girl.
Sweet Smell of Success is described by Circle Theatre as a “film noir musical about the dirty, ambitious world of tabloid journalism.” It tells the story of an ambitious young press agent who is taken under the wing of a well-known gossip columnist and soon finds himself taking after his mentor’s dishonest ways.
The brunch will begin at 2 p.m. on Sunday, May 28. The show will begin at 3 p.m., and the question-and-answer session will immediately follow. The cost to attend all three is $30, and reservations can be made by calling 771-0700.
Circle Theatre will host performances of Sweet Smell of Success on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. Special Thursday performances will be held at 8 p.m. on June 8, 15 and 22. Tickets are $24, with $2 discounts for seniors and children.
Circle Theatre is located at 7300 Madison St.