Dirty Dancing The Classic Story On Stage

The U.S touring production of the international hit Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage has announced principal casting for the upcoming pre-Broadway U.S. premiere.  Josef Brown will re-create the role of Johnny Castle direct from the London production and Amanda Leigh Cobb will play Frances "Baby" Houseman.  Chicago's own Britta Lazenga - member of the Joffrey Ballet - will return home direct from the Toronto production in the role of Penny Johnson.

The National Tour of Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage will host its pre-Broadway U.S. premiere in Chicago at the Cadillac Palace Theatre (151 W. Randolph St.) for a limited engagement from September 28 through December 7, 2008.

Josef Brown comes to the National touring company direct from the London and Australian productions of Dirty Dancing - The Classic Story On Stage starring in the role of Johnny Castle.  London's Evening Standard praised his performance in the West End, "His spectacular agility expressed in leaps and spins, puts an enviable muscled torso to work… [and] assertively dancing Baby back into his life."

Brown was trained at the Australian Ballet School in Melbourne before performing to critical acclaim with The Australian Ballet.  Commenting on his casting in the upcoming U.S. premiere, "It is a genuine thrill to be bringing the role of Johnny Castle to the U.S. stage.  This is an American story full of hope, personal revelation and, of course, sensuality and love, uplifting literally millions of theatergoers around the world since it first opened.  It has been my pleasure to be part of this experience, and I look forward to performing in three great cities of the world: Chicago, Boston and Los Angeles," Brown states.

Britta Lazenga is a Chicago-based dancer and member of the world-renowned Joffrey Ballet.  Lazenga says about her casting in the U.S. premiere, "It fills me with great joy and tremendous honor to be returning home to perform in the American premiere of Dirty Dancing.  It is challenging for me to express just how grateful I am to be included in such a memorable production and it is even more challenging for me to contain my excitement.  I can't wait to share this excitement and experience with the audiences of Boston, Los Angeles and of course, Sweet Home Chicago."

Amanda Leigh Cobb recently performed on Broadway in The Country Girl and The Coast of Utopia and is a graduate of the Yale School of Drama.  Her other credits include the Yale Repertory Theater, Milwaukee Shakespeare and the Williamstown Theater Festival.  Regarding her casting she commented, "I am thrilled to be playing such an iconic role that continues to inspire people decades after the film and cannot think of three more exciting cities than Chicago, Boston and Los Angeles to welcome us on this tour across the country!  I particularly look forward to soon exploring Chicago's amazing art scene, architecture, and natural beauty when we start rehearsals later this summer."

The rest of the casting for the U.S. premiere of Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage will be announced at a future date.

Proclaimed "The biggest live theatre sensation of all time" by The Observer newspaper in London, Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage also received four stars from The Times, The Independent, Financial Times, Evening Standard, Mail on Sunday, Sunday Times and Time Out London.

Individual tickets ranging in price from $35 - $95 are currently on-sale.  A limited number of premium tickets are available to all performances and range in price from $125 - $150.  Tickets are available at Broadway In Chicago Box Offices (18 W. Monroe, 24 W. Randolph St. and 151 W. Randolph St.), through the Broadway In Chicago Ticket Line at 312-902-1400, at all Ticketmaster ticket centers or online at Ticketmaster.com.