Longtime Broadway favorite Barbara Cook will bring an evening of songs and stories to Off Broadway this spring in “Barbara Cook: Then and Now,” a new production conceived by James Lapine (“Into the Woods,” “Sunday in the Park With George”) and directed by 10-time Tony winner Tommy Tune.
Cook (“The Music Man,” “Candide”) has come up a lot in conversations around Broadway lately, thanks to the current Roundabout Theater Company revival of “She Loves Me,” the 1963 musical with which Cook is closely associated — particularly for her signature song from that musical, “Vanilla Ice Cream.” (In the new revival, Laura Benanti plays the role that Cook created.) Although “Then and Now” shares the same name as Cook’s memoir, which is due out in June, the show’s creators are billing it as loosely inspired by the process of writing the memoir, rather than as something based specifically on the upcoming book.
Now one of the biggest names among cabaret performers, Cook collaborated with Lapine on her last Broadway outing, “Sondheim on Sondheim,” the 2010 revue of Stephen Sondheim songs (of which Cook has become known as a prime interpreter). Tommy Tune, who won the lifetime achievement Tony Award last year, is currently performing his show “Taps, Tunes and Tall Tales” around the country.
“Then and Now” will play a limited run of 65 performances during the lead-up to the book release, with previews starting April 13 prior to a May 4 opening at Off Broadway’s New World Stages. Broadway vet Roy Furman (“The Color Purple,” “An American in Paris”) produces in association with Sandy Robertson and Luigi Caiola.