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Vanessa Hudgens' 'Gigi' to begin previews on Broadway

By Karen Butler
Vanessa Hudgens' 'Gigi' to begin previews on Broadway
Photo of the cast of "Gigi," courtesy of Boneau/Bryan-Brown

NEW YORK, March 19 (UPI) -- The new Broadway production of Gigi -- featuring Vanessa Hudgens in the title role -- is to begin preview performances Thursday night.

The musical by Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe will play at the Neil Simon Theatre. An official opening is planned for April 8.

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The show will mark the Broadway debut of Hudgens, the star of the High School Musical franchise. The cast also includes Victoria Clark, Corey Cott, Dee Hoty, Howard McGillin and Steffanie Leigh. With a new book adaptation by Heidi Thomas, the show was choreographed by Joshua Bergasse and directed by Eric Schaeffer. "Gigi began life as a 1944 novella by Colette, and soon became the author's most famous and enduring creation," a news release said. "The material was first adapted for the Broadway stage in 1951 as a straight play by author Anita Loos and starring an unknown Audrey Hepburn in the title role. In 1956, fresh from the blockbuster Broadway success of My Fair Lady, the writing team of Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe turned next to Gigi, as their first musical written for the screen. The MGM film, produced by the legendary Arthur Freed and directed by Vincente Minnelli, opened to rapturous reviews and went on to become the most successful of all of MGM's Freed Unit musicals."

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