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Andrew Lippa to star in world premiere of 'I Am Harvey Milk'

April 02, 2013|By Jamie Wetherbe
  • Harvey Milk in 1977. A new concert piece about the slain gay rights activist will premiere in San Francisco.
Harvey Milk in 1977. A new concert piece about the slain gay rights activist… (STF / AP )

"I Am Harvey Milk," a new oratorio from Tony and Grammy nominee Andrew Lippa, will make its world premiere in June at the Nourse Auditorium in San Francisco as part of the San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus 35th anniversary.

The composer, who penned the music and lyrics for Broadway's "The Addams Family,"  also will star as the late gay rights activist, alongside Tony-winner Laura Benanti ("Gypsy"). Tickets range from $25 to $65.

The show – part choral performance, part theater – traces Milk’s life from boyhood to his rise as the first openly gay man in the United States to hold public office.

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The production, featuring a 30-piece orchestra and a chorus of 300, will play two shows June 27 and 28 to coincide with the 35th anniversary of Milk’s assassination.

Milk won a seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 1977; a year later he was shot and killed at City Hall. His life inspired the 2008 film “Milk” that earned Sean Penn an Oscar for his portrayal of the slain activist.

Noah Himmelstein will direct the production, which will feature the Gay Men's Chorus accompanied by the Bay Area Rainbow Symphony.

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