WILLIAMSTOWN -- Two internationally renowned powerhouse performers -- soprano Renée Fleming and multiple award-winning actress, dancer and singer Chita Rivera -- will make their respective Williamstown Theatre Festival Main Stage debuts this summer.
Fleming, who will begin her Berkshires summer as soloist with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at its Tanglewood season-opening concert July 5, will make her Williamstown bow in "Living on Love" by Joe DiPietro, adapted from "Peccadillo," a play by Garson Kanin. Three-time Tony Award-winning director and choreographer Kathleen Marshall will direct. The show -- a farce about the tangled relationship between an opera diva and her egomaniacal maestro husband who becomes enamored with the lovely young woman hired to ghostwrite his autobiography -- is scheduled to run July 16-26.
The Emmy-, Grammy- and three-time Tony Award-winning Rivera will make her WTF bow July 31-Aug. 17 in "The Visit," a musical adaptation of Friedrich Dürrenmatt's play; one of the last collaborations between John Kander (music) and Fred Ebb (lyrics). The book is by award-winning playwright Terrence McNally. John Doyle, who directed "Ten Cents a Dance" at Williamstown in 2011, will direct. Graciela Daniele will choreograph.
The festival's 2014 Mainstage season begins July 2-13 with Ring Lardner and George S. Kaufman's "June Moon," directed by Jessica Stone, who piloted an all-male "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum" at Williamstown in 2010 and Neil Simon's "Last of the Red Hot Lovers" in 2012.
"There's a real dynamism to this summer's Main Stage season and it thrills me in particular to have so many female powerhouses be part of the Main Stage this summer, between Jessica Stone, Renée Fleming, Kathleen Marshall, and Chita Rivera," former WTF artistic director Jenny Gersten said in a news release. "This was by happenstance, but it's a beautiful way for me to close out my term as artistic director."
Gersten ended her three-season tenure as artistic director this month to become executive director of New York City's Friends of the High Line, but has curated the upcoming 2014 season. The summer season will be overseen by current producer Stephen M. Kaus. Mandy Greenfield, currently artistic producer at Manhattan Theatre Club, will take over as artistic director beginning in September.
Nikos Stage productions, special events and additional information about the festival's 60th annuversary season will be announced shortly.
Special discount ticket bundles are now on sale through March 14 at wtfestival.org. Single tickets will be available in April through the WTF website and by mail order using WTF's season brochure. Call (413) 597-3400 to join the mailing list.
The WTF box office will open on June 3. Tickets may then be purchased online, by phone, or in person at the ‘62 Center for Theatre and Dance box office at 1000 Main St (Route 2).