A Chorus Line
September 13-23, 2018
Booker T. Washington High School for The Performing and Visual Arts
Montgomery Arts Theatre • 2501 Flora Street • Dallas, TX 75201
What draws us to “A Chorus Line” after 40 years? We find ourselves lost in the backstage world as we watch the dancers audition for the chance to be in a brand-new show. We meet and learn about this talented group — their lives, desires, and fears laid bare before us. It takes us to the human side of theatre – minimal sets, minimal costumes – just people and their stories. It is the essence of what theatre is about and draws us into the moment like few musicals can.
I look at the show in a slightly different way, for I was one of those very dancers from the beginning. These characters are based on my friends and theatre family. Their stories also include mine. When I see the show, I see how we were in 1974, just closing Michael Bennett’s Broadway production of SeeSaw and putting ourselves back on the audition line. I see and hear my old friends telling their stories, and I share in their laughter and tears. From the recordings to the workshops, The Public Theatre performances and finally Broadway – their stories are ingrained in me – part of my history. When I watch a performance of “A Chorus Line”, I see Donna, Thommie, Baayork, Kelly, Brandt, Crissy… and all the others that I have the honor to call my friends. I see all of us young, vibrant, and together again, including those who, sadly, have left The Line. I am transported back to those magical years that we developed and worked on this remarkable show together.
For this reason, I have, over the years, stayed away from offers to direct “A Chorus Line”. I did not want to direct a quickly rehearsed cookie cutter revival of a piece of my history. Booker T. Washington extended to me the opportunity to do the show correctly with a workshop approach, allowing several weeks for the characters to truly develop for this young group. This approach allowed the actors to find themselves and make the show their own.
A very special Thank You to Julie Russell Stanley for her incredible work on this show, without whom this would not have happened. I was blessed to have had her agree to join me through this process. She, as well as our gifted cast, embodies the spirit of “A Chorus Line”.
I am proud to introduce and welcome this new group to a very large family that has lived on The Line throughout the years. The torch has been passed. Please take it into the future and “… point me toward tomorrow…”
— Michael Serrecchia