LaGuardia is Like President Obama: Behind the Scenes with the Cast of Encores! Fiorello!

Kate Baldwin, Danny Rutigliano, Shuler Hensley and more rehearse (and dish) about Encores! season-opening revival of the Pulitzer-winning musical.

Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia did much more then lend his name to an airport, and the cast of Fiorello! will wedge that knowledge into our brains through song and dance. Gary Griffin directs the opening musical of the Encores! 20th Anniversary season, which is currently in rehearsals¸ with choreography by Alex Sanchez and musical direction by Rob Berman. His revival of the 1959 Jerry Bock/Sheldon Harnick musical, which features a book by Jerome Weidman and George Abbott, will star Danny Rutigliano (The Lion King) as the-man-himself Fiorello LaGuardia, Shuler Hensley (Oklahoma!) as Republican District Leader Ben Marino, Tony Award nominees Kate Baldwin (Giant), Erin Dilly (A Christmas Story), and Emily Skinner (Side Show) as Thea, Marie, and Mitzi, Jenn Gambatese (Tarzan) as Dora, Jeremy Bobb (Is He Dead?) as Floyd, Adam Heller (Elf) as Morris, Andrew Samonsky (Merrily We Roll Along) as Neil, Ray DeMattis (Grease) as Mr. Zapatella, Richard Ruiz (Romeo and Juliet) as Mr. Lopez, and Cheryl Stern (La Cage aux Folles) as Mrs. Pomerantz. The show will run for seven performances, from January 30 to February 3 at New York City Center – which happens to be a location LaGuardia saved from the wrecking ball by turning it into Manhattan’s first performing arts center.

We went inside the Center’s rehearsal space on Wednesday, to talk politics, love, and music -- the themes that make Fiorello! a play we have been reviving for 54 years.

For more information and tickets to Fiorello! click here.

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