THE PIANIST, a new play written & directed by EMILY MANN - June 23rd reading to star Santino Fontana
Posted by: Official_Press_Release 11:14 am EDT 06/22/22


Robin de Levita Productions, Gorgeous Entertainment, and Wolk Transfer Company have announced their plan to bring The Pianist, a new play with music adapted for the stage and directed by Emily Mann (Having Our Say, Edward Albee's All Over), to Broadway. Based on the memoir by the Polish-Jewish pianist and composer Wladyslaw Szpilman (also the source for the Academy Award winning 2002 film), The Pianist features an original score by acclaimed Dutch concert pianist Iris Hond , and a richly immersive soundscape enhanced by Atmos Dolby Surround Sound (in its theatrical premiere). Tony Award winner Santino Fontana (Tootsie) will star as Szpilman in a by-invitation only development reading Thursday June 23 in NYC.

The Pianist tells the haunting true story of Wladyslaw Szpilman, a survivor of Nazi-occupied Warsaw in World War II. Prior to the war, Szpilman--an acclaimed pianist and composer--enjoys a happy life as a Polish citizen. But when the Nazis invade Poland, Szpilman and his family find their lives disintegrating as the Nazis progressively tighten their hold on Warsaw. Eventually Szpilman finds himself alone, his family taken to the Nazi death camps, as he turns to his music to keep his hope--and himself--alive.

For the June 23 reading, Santino Fontana will lead a company including Richard Topol, Georgia Warner, Claire Beckman, Arielle Goldman, Paul Spera, Addison Finley, Jordan Lage, Robert David Grant and Tina Benko.

With an eye-towards Broadway, The Pianist is produced by Robin de Levita and Kees Abrahams at Robin de Levita Productions, Kumiko Yoshii and Brendan Ryan Walsh at Gorgeous Entertainment, and Michael Wolk at Wolk Transfer Company. The production team includes scenic design by Beowulf Boritt, sound design by Mark Bennett, and general management by Carl Pasbjerg at Alchemy Production Group.

The production will feature the first-time theatrical use of a richly immersive soundscape enhanced by Atmos Dolby Surround Sound, engineered by Felix Penny. Atmos’ revolutionary software allows for uniquely precise surround sound effects, isolating particular parts of an audio track, to be placed in a particular area of a theater. Atmos Dolby Surround Sound captures a more realistic and vivid flow of sound with more points of content-capture, allowing for a more immersive output.

“The Pianist tells a soaring tale of survival and triumph through music,” says producer Michael Wolk. “It is a riveting story that is fiercely present tense -- though it’s set in the past, it shows us that just like today, worlds are destroyed when we demonize each other. And it gives us hope by showing how human connections and the power of music can transcend hate and fear and heal our hearts.”

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