Mary Poppins Recreated by Former Broadway Star

mary poppins

Former Broadway star, Kim Crosby, has been cast as the “practically perfect” leading role in a recreation of the stage adaptation of Disney’s Mary Poppins. The Springfield Little Theatre at the Historic Landers Theatre is producing the show in the heart of Springfield, Missouri.

mary poppins
Broadway actress, Kim Crosby.

Kim Crosby rose to Broadway fame when she originated the role of Cinderella in the widely-popular Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine musical, Into the Woods. Crosby starred in the musical alongside other Broadway legends, including Bernadette Peters and Joanna Gleason. The singing starlet also met her husband, Robert Westenberg, when performing Into the Woods.  He played opposite of her as Cinderella’s Prince: a real-life fairytale. Crosby and Westenberg are now both based in Springfield, Missouri and continue to contribute their talents to the theatre community around the nation.

At the Landers Theatre in particular, Ms. Crosby was last seen in the theater’s very own production of Into the Woods in 2012, in which she graduated to the role of The Baker’s Wife originally played by Joanna Gleason. Mr. Westenberg helmed as director of Les Misérables in 2012 at the Landers and also serves as the head of the theatre department at Drury University in Springfield. Crosby and Westenberg both are scheduled to join in the Into the Woods reunion performance alongside many original cast members at Segerstrom Hall in Costa Mesa, California on November 9.

mary poppins
Chip Holderman as Bert and Kim Crosby as Mary Poppins in the Landers Theatre’s ‘Mary Poppins’.

The topic of Mary Poppins has become a rather popular one as of late. On August 27, the film celebrated its 50th Anniversary since the original premiere of the picture in Los Angeles at the Chinese Theatre. The original live-action film featured the likes of Julie Andrews as Mary Poppins and Dick Van Dyke as her quirky counter-part, Bert. In the holiday season of 2013, Saving Mr. Banks was released which is the true story of how Mary Poppins came to life from book to screen.

Oscar winner, Emma Thompson, stars in Saving Mr. Banks as P.L. Travers, the original Mary Poppins novelist and Mr. Walt Disney is portrayed by fellow Oscar winner, Tom Hanks. The film proved to receive a great amount of critical acclaim and served as an enticing window to watch through and see the struggles that come with recreating such a precious piece of art.

mary poppins
Robert Westenberg and Kim Crosby in Broadway’s ‘Into the Woods’.

As former Broadway star, Kim Crosby, recreates the character of Mary Poppins in her own image, one must not forget the large number of talented performers who aid her in her performance. Springfield Little Theatre director, Chuck Rogers, has assembled what seems to be a top-notch group of actors of all ages to bring Mary Poppins to life in vibrant, new way.

Chip Holderman takes on the role of Bert while Andy Bryan and Kim Snyder play Mr. and Mrs. Banks, respectively. Madeline Popovich and Ford Mirowski portray Jane and Michael Banks, the children for whom Mary Poppins serves as a nanny. The entire cast is composed of nearly fifty performers under the direction of Chuck Rogers, choreography by Josh Inmon and musical direction by Susan Gravatt. Kris Haik has also provided the cast with a luminous and visually captivating selection of costumes all created by herself and surrounding members of the Springfield community.

The recreation of Mary Poppins by former Broadway star, Kim Crosby, will open on September 12 at the Landers Theatre and run for a limited time only until October 5. Tickets can be purchased on the theater’s website or by calling the box office.

By Cody Collier

Broadway World
Entertainment Weekly
Springfield News-Leader
Springfield Little Theatre

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