Daddy Long Legs

Set in New England in the early 1900s, this new musical follows a courageous young orphan who dreams of a better life. When an anonymous benefactor sends Jerusha Abbott to a prestigious college, she embarks on an enlightening journey. As revealed through her vivid letters, Jerusha overcomes her difficult past to discover the secret of happiness.

Daddy Long Legs played from February 5, 2014 - April 5, 2014 in the Gompertz Theatre.

Director     |     John Caird & Nell Balaban
Music Director/Keyboard     |     Corinne Aquilina
Drums      |     Tony Bruno
Cello     |     Gonca Huff
Violin     |     Anton Cutajar

Jervis Pendleton     |     Kevin Earley
Jerusha Abbott     |     Penny McNamee

KEVIN EARLEY (Jervis Pendleton) Broadway: Les Misérables, Thoroughly Modern Millie, A Tale of Two Cities. Awards: Drama Desk Nominee for the title role in Death Takes a Holiday at Roundabout Theatre, Joseph Jefferson Award, L.A. Drama Critic’s Circle Award, 4 Ovation Award Nominations. Concert Venues: Kennedy Center, Hollywood Bowl, and Town, Disney, and Carnegie Halls. Original cast recordings: Death Takes A Holiday, Tale of Two Cities, and his own debut CD Earley Standards.

PENNY MCNAMEE (Jerusha Abbott) Stage: Nessarose in Wicked (Original Australian Cast) for which she won Australia’s coveted Green Room Award, Jennifer Gabriel in The Witches of Eastwick (Mo Award Nom), Donna in Hurlyburly (Griffin Theater, Sydney). Television: Ruth in Stephen King’s Salem’s Lot, Hope in Spielberg’s The Pacific, Elementary (CBS), Blue Bloods (CBS), Political Animals (USA), All Saints (Aus), White Collar Blue (Aus), Satisfaction (Aus) and Headland (Aus). Film: Lead role of Melissa in Lionsgate’s cult hit See No Evil and the lead role of Carol in John Duigan’s Careless Love.

JOHN CAIRD (Director/Book) is a freelance director and writer working in theatre, opera and musical theatre. He is thrilled that Daddy Long Legs is opening in Florida for the first time. Other recent work in North America includes Tosca at LA Opera, La Bohème at Canadian Opera Company in Toronto, and Parsifal at Lyric Opera in Chicago. In Stockholm, John has directed productions of Strindberg’s Dance of Death and Shakespeare’s Merry Wives of Windsor, Romeo and Juliet, and The Tempest, all at the Royal Dramatic Theatre where he is Principal Guest Director. In Japan, in addition to Daddy Long Legs, John has recently directed Jane Eyre, and his own adaptation of Teru Miyamoto’s novel Kinshu, and his own version of Bernstein’s Candide. Productions at London’s National Theatre include Hamlet with Simon Russell Beale, Candide, The Seagull with Judi Dench, Pam Gems’ Stanley with Anthony Sher, and Humbleboy by Charlotte Jones with Diana Rigg and Simon Russell Beale. John is an Honorary Associate Director of the RSC, where he has directed over twenty classic and new plays. His RSC productions of Les Misérables and Nicholas Nickleby have won numerous awards around the world, including the Olivier and Tony Awards. Other work includes Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Song and Dance at the Palace Theatre and the Siegfried and Roy Spectacular in Las Vegas. Television work includes Nicholas Nickleby, As You Like It, and his own adaptation of Shakespeare’s Henry IV for the BBC. In opera, John has also directed Don Carlos, Aida, and Don Giovanni, all at Welsh National Opera, and Brief Encounter, a new opera by André Previn, first produced at Houston Grand Opera for which John also wrote the libretto. Published work as a librettist and lyricist includes a new version of John Gay’s Beggar’s Opera with the composer Ilona Sekacz; a new adaptation of J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan which played at the RSC and the National; Children of Eden with composer Stephen Schwartz; Jane Eyre with Paul Gordon; his new version of Leonard Bernstein’s Candide with specially commissioned new lyrics by Richard Wilbur and Stephen Sondheim; and Brief Encounter. THEATRE CRAFT, John’s new book on directing, was published by Faber & Faber in London and NY in March, 2010.

CORINNE AQUILINA (Music Director/Keyboard) NEW YORK and tour credits: was the original arranger/musical director for the  long running Off-Broadway show Menopause, The Musical,  played in the Broadway pit of Boy From Oz, Annie, Five Guys Named Moe, and The Great American Trailer Park Musical. She is Composer/Lyricist for Treasure Island, a new musical, which premiered recently at Arkansas Repertory Theater; The Littlest Witch (licensing agent: Steele Spring Stage Rights); and her newest musical, Pump N Go. Other arranger/ musical director credits include Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Library’s Sophisticated Ladies for Inside Broadway. Special thanks to Merry Go Round Playhouse and Florida Studio Theatre. Corinne is a member of the Dramatistis Guild, ASCAP, and AFM Local 802.

BRAD HAAK (Music Supervisor/Orchestrator) Broadway: music director for Mary Poppins, Elton John’s Lestat, and Il Divo - A Musical Affair. 1st national tour of Disney’s The Lion King. Internationally: Honk! (Singapore and Philippines), Daddy Long Legs (London and Tokyo), and Jane Eyre (Tokyo). Recent regional highlights: Chicago Shakespeare Theatre’s Follies (Jeff Award for music direction), Sunday in the Park With George (Jeff nom.), Marriott Theatre’s Les Misérables (Jeff nom.), Gypsy, King and I, and South Pacific (The Muny in St. Louis) Emma, and Little Miss Scrooge with composer Paul Gordon. Orchestrator for New York and Boston Pops, National Symphony and L.A. Phil.

PAUL GORDON (Composer/Lyricist) was nominated for a 2001 Tony Award for composing the music and lyrics to the musical Jane Eyre. He won 
a 2009 Ovation award for his score to Daddy Long Legs and won the 2007 Bay Area Critics Circle Award for his book to the musical, Emma, which has played all across the country. Daddy Long Legs, written with John Caird and developed by the Rubicon Theatre Company, has had productions all over the world including London, Canada, and Tokyo, with a new production slated for South Korea in the spring of 2014. Being Earnest, written with Jay Gruska, premiered at TheatreWorks in April of 2013. His latest musical, Analog and Vinyl, was selected for the 2013 NAMT Festival and will have its first production in 2014. The World Premiere of Little Miss Scrooge, written with John Caird and Sam Caird, is scheduled for Christmas of 2015 in Santa Barbara. www.

NELL BALABAN (Associate Director) has been with Daddy Long Legs since its inception and has mounted the show at many regional theatres including the Cincinnati and Cleveland Playhouses, Northlight Repertory and the Laguna Playhouse. Other credits include Golda’s Balcony (B’way) and The Boy In The Basement (outstanding director award) at the New York International Fringe Festival. She served as associate for Jane Eyre in Tokyo and will do the same for Daddy Long Legs in Seoul this summer.

DAVID KING (Technical Director) has worked on Rubicon productions for the past six years. He has built sets for The Colony Theatre (where he doubled as an electrician) and the Santa Fe Opera. David has also constructed scenic elements for theatre, film and television with G & G Design Associates. His work for television includes Monk, Flavor of Love and America’s Greatest Dog. He received his certificate from the LACC Theatre Academy.

DAVID FARLEY (Scenic/Costume Designer) Broadway credits include: A Little Night Music, 13, and Sunday in the Park with George (Tony Award Nominations for sets and costumes). West End credits include Daddy Long Legs, A Little Night Music, Little Shop of Horrors, and Sunday in the Park with George (Olivier and Evening Standard Award). Other theatre credits include Snapshots (Goodspeed), Take Flight, Travesties, Are You There McPhee? (McCarter Theater), Kiss Me Kate (Ontario), and La Cage Aux Folles (set).

PAUL TOBEN (Original Lighting Designer) Recent New York credits include: The Story of my Life (Broadway), The Judy Show (DR2), Saturn Nights (Incubator Arts Project), Electra in a One Piece, and The Realm (The Wild Project), Futurity (HERE Arts Center), and Romeo and Juliet (Columbia Stages). Regionally, Paul’s work has been seen at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, TheatreWorks, Northlight, Theatre by the Sea and Flat Rock Playhouse, among others. Paul spent three seasons at the Williamstown Theatre Festival, including designs of Caravan Man and Demon Dreams. Paul has served as Associate Designer for Anything Goes, Everyday Rapture, Bye Bye Birdie, Sunday in the Park with George, and Pal Joey (Broadway); Play Dead (New York & Las Vegas); and for National Tours of Spring Awakening, A Bronx Tale, and Annie.

CORY PATTAK (Lighting Designer) Handle with Care (Westside Theatre), Skippyjon Jones (Theatreworks USA), This Side of Paradise (Off-Bway), Hot Mess in Manhattan (Chernuchin), Witnessed by the World (59E59), Unlock’d, Nymph Errant, With Glee, The Blue Flower (Prospect Theatre). Regional designs: Old Globe, KC Rep, Maltz Jupiter, Goodspeed, Cap Rep, Arkansas Rep, Penguin Rep, Engeman Theatre, Surflight, Northern Stage, Syracuse Stage. Associate: A Time to Kill, Newsies, Peter...Starcatcher, An Evening..Patti Lupone & Mandy Patinkin, The Story of My Life, and Irena’s Vow.
Ryan Kilcourse (Sound Designer) is pleased to be returning to Florida Studio Theatre after designing for Let’s Twist Again: with the Wanderers and Smokey Joe’s Café last season. He recently finished mixing the 2012 season at the Merry Go Round Playhouse, having designed the 25th Annual Spelling Bee and Nunsense. Other recent design work includes: Marvelous Wonderettes, Merry Go Round Playhouse; The Last Supper, Rising Sun NYC. Assistant Design work includes Helen on West 86th St, ATA NYC; Damn Yankees, AMAS Muscial Theater NYC; Fly, Crossroads Theater Co. NYC.

T. THERESA SCARANO (Prop Supervisor)a native of Roswell, New Mexico, currently lives in Southern California. Her multi-faceted career of over 25 years spans theatre and dance in varying capacities, including tech director and prop designer, as well as set designer and builder. She has stage managed for California Ballet, Kairos Dancers, and currently for Dancing Images Dance Company. Theresa served as both Scenery Warehouse Manager and Prop Master at San Bernardino Civic Light Opera. She originated and authored a theatre program at Riverside County Juvenile Hall, in which she directed adolescents in performances presented for various audiences including Juvenile Court Judges. Theresa was the manager of Santa Barbara Civic Light Opera’s set rental division prior to it becoming The Set Company, where she then worked as Director of Operations. She is currently director of Premier Sets.

CHRISTINA BURCK (Production Manager/Rehearsal Stage Manager) is currently the Executive Producer at Rubicon Theatre Company as well as the Production Manager for Daddy Long Legs. She has served as Production Manager for Daddy Long Legs for over four years at various theatres across the country, in Canada and London. She has also served as Production Manager/Stage Manager for The Best is Yet to Come: The Music of Cy Coleman both at Rubicon and Off-Broadway. Additional credits at Rubicon Theatre include Stage Manager for Little Miss Scrooge (2012 and 2013), A Rubicon Family Christmas, Spit Like a Big Girl, You Can’t Take It With You, A Time for Love, Man of La Mancha, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, The Turn of the Screw, Mating Dance of the Werewolf, and the BeckettFest. Christina has also worked at the Odyssey Theatre, Circus Theatricals, Interact Theatre Company, Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities, Laguna Playhouse, La Mirada Center for the Performing Arts (McCoy Rigby) and the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre.

LAURA BERGQUIST (Original Musical Director) conducted National and International Tours of The King And I, Titanic, and Miss Saigon. She is a frequent guest conductor in regional theaters and a clinician in universities. As an ASCAP Awards recipient for composition, her personal catalogue includes more than 60 works in print and several recordings. She is currently the Musical Director for Daddy Long Legs (John Caird & Paul Gordon), Jane Austen’s: Emma (Paul Gordon), both planning a Broadway production, and Allegiance (Jay Kuo & Lorenzo Thione). Regional work as Musical Director and Conductor at Cincinnati Playhouse, TheatreWorks, Northlight, Cleveland Playhouse, Rubicon Theatre, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Lyric Theater of Oklahoma, Music Theatre of Wichita, and The Old Globe. In New York she has music directed numerous reading and workshops for NAMT, New York Stage and Film, New York Musical Theatre Festival, Midtown International Theatre Festival, and performed at Joe’s Pub, Avery Fisher Hall, and Merkin Hall. Laura maintains a large coaching studio and is regularly called on as a performer and music director.

KELLI KAREN (Production Stage Manager) has been an integral member of Florida Studio Theatre for the past 21 years. Kelli began at FST as a dance teacher in the education department in 1993. In addition to her classes at FST, Kelli has created and taught outreach programs at Care Pointes in Swaziland South Africa, The Pines of Sarasota, Girls Inc., The Boys and Girls Club, and has taught playwriting at numerous local elementary schools as well as our sister city of Dunfermline, Scotland. Stage management credits at FST include Monty Python’s Spamalot; The Underpants; The World Goes ‘Round; The Columnist; Smokey Joe’s Café; In the Book Of; Perfect Wedding; Jericho; Next Fall; Next to Normal; The Savannah Disputation; Cowgirls; Ghost-Writer; Shear Madness; I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change; The 39 Steps; Beehive: The 60s Musical; Shotgun; Ruined; The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee; Edward Albee’s Occupant; Motown Cabaret; …and L.A. is Burning, and Always... Patsy Cline.

DAVID ELZER (Associate Producer) is the Ovation Award-winning theatrical producer for The Marvelous Wonderettes (Los Angeles & Off-Broadway), The Best Is Yet to Come (Off-Broadway and at Rubicon), Sister Act: The Musical, Jewtopia (Off-Broadway), The Laramie Project (Laguna Playhouse), and Catalpa and Shyness is Nice (at the Alliance). David’s latest project is the smash-hit, critically-acclaimed world premiere musical Having It All. He also produced the LA Drama Critics’ Circle and LA Weekly Award-winning Life Could Be A Dream, which ran at the Hudson Theatre in Hollywood and at the Laguna Playhouse. Through his publicity company Demand PR, David represents many theaters in Los Angeles including Rubicon Theatre Company, Celebration Theatre, Colony Theatre Company, Cabrillo Music Theatre, Furious Theatre Company, La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts, NoHo Arts Center, Open Fist Theatre Company, Theatre Tribe, and West Coast Ensemble.

MICHAEL JACKOWITZ (Executive Producer) UPCOMING: Little Miss Scrooge by John/Sam Caird and Paul Gordon (Christmas 2014); Tuck Everlasting (Broadway 2015); Untitled Hawaii Project (Hawaii), and Abyssinia (London).  Past Productions: How to Succeed starring Daniel Radcliffe, Darren Criss and Nick Jonas (8 Tony Nominations, including Best Musical Revival 2011);  Pippin (Menier Chocolate Factory); Séance on a Wet Afternoon, the new opera by Stephen Schwartz (Lincoln Center); My Fairytale; The Best Is Yet To Come (Drama Desk Award: Best Review);  Food Chain; AVOW; tick, tick…BOOM!; My Antonia; It’s Only Life (LA Ovation Award: Best New Musical).  Michael is a partner of WitzEnd Productions with Marvin Kahan and Jeffrey Grove and serves as Rubicon Theatre’s Director of New Work.

KARYL LYNN BURNS (Rubicon Theatre Producing Artistic Director) founded Rubicon with husband James O’Neil in 1998 and has overseen more than 100 productions for the company, including World Premieres such as Daddy Long Legs (which has traveled to 15 U.S. cities and 4 countries); The Best is Yet to Come: The Music of Cy Coleman (NY Drama Desk Award); Lonesome Traveler; and Hello! My Baby. She also produced the West Coast BeckettFest, which brought international artists to Ventura for a month-long celebration of the works of Samuel Beckett. For over a decade prior to starting Rubicon, Karyl Lynn was CEO of State of the Arts, an arts management and marketing firm. Clients included Ventura Chamber Music Festival, New West Symphony, Ensemble Theatre Company, PCPA Theaterfest, Theatre League, Broadway Producer Normand Kurtz, and the late Tony® Award-winning playwright Dale Wasserman. Karyl Lynn worked with students from Oak Meadow School who received the United Nations “Global 500” Award for their work on environmental issues. For The Dream Foundation, she produced a PSA directed by Mimi Leder and starring Jeff Bridges. As an event planner, Karyl Lynn and her staff coordinated the 10th Annual “Cool Comedy, Hot Cuisine” with Robin Williams, Howie Mandel and Bob Saget, emceed by Bob Costas. She managed and promoted a charity concert for Scleroderma Research with singer Sheryl Crow at the Santa Barbara Bowl. She also coordinated several charity film premieres. For Capps for Congress, she managed a luncheon with First Lady Hillary Clinton as keynote speaker. Karyl Lynn is also an award-winning actor and sound designer.

TONY BRUNO (Drums) began his career at FST in 1988 with No Way To Treat A Lady. Since then he has appeared in A Marvelous Party, Night Train to Memphis, Shake, Rattle, and Roll, The World Goes ‘Round, and Urban Cowboys. Tony is one of the Circus industry’s leading percussionists. He has worked with performers such as the Wallenda’s, Bello Nock, Dolly Jacobs, Doug Demin, Jewel Tones, the Tokens, and JR Watson. National: eight tours with the Larry Stout Show Band, arenas and clubs cross country with Mighty Tigers and Severn Records. Albums: percussion tracks for Busch Gardens and Sea World, and recently the album Time Machine. Local performances: Sarasota and South County Jazz Clubs. Music in Reel Time Dick Hyman at the Sarasota Opera House.

ANTON CUTAJOR (Violin) Born on the Island of Malta in Europe,  I  started studying violin at the age 7. By age 15, I was playing 1st chair with the Malta Youth Orchestra and had become quite an accomplished violin player, winning  several playing competitions. Eventually my parents moved  to Toronto, Canada, where I continued my music education at the Toronto Royal Conservatory Of Music, under world renowned Albin Berky, and music theory under the guidance of the London Trinity College Of Music. By age 20  I had gained a lot of playing experience playing in several performances as a soloist and with other string ensembles in the greater Metropolitan Toronto area. I currently live in Sarasota, Florida where I teach violin and guitar and play at many events in Sarasota and surrounding areas.

GONCA HUFF (Cello) is a native of Ankara, Turkey. She dedicated her life to the cello at an early age at the Ankara State Conservatory of Music. She received her Bachelors degree in Turkey and Masters degree at Western Michigan University. She was principal cellist with the Cukurova Symphony in Turkey and Shoals Symphony. She has played with many other orchestras and chamber groups, including Tampa Bay, Huntsville, Tuscaloosa, Kalamazoo, Battle Creek, Tupelo, Japan, Chattanooga, and Istanbul.

RUBICON THEATRE COMPANY (Co-producer) is a non-profit regional theatre company based in Ventura, California. True to the vision of founders Karyl Lynn Burns and James O’Neil, Rubicon offers an environment where artists are nurtured and respected, and where commitment and risk are encouraged. Rubicon has received critical and popular acclaim for fresh, invigorating interpretations of classics, dramas, comedies and musicals; and for the presentation of World Premieres. Rubicon recently received the L.A. Drama Critics Award for “Sustained Excellence,” and has received multiple L.A. Stage Alliance, Ovation, Garland, NAACP and Indie Awards.  Rubicon has presented a diverse repertoire of productions and events with esteemed artists including Ed Asner, George Ball, David Birney, Susan Clark, Dana Delany, Cliff DeYoung, Bonnie Franklin, Joseph Fuqua, Joel Grey, Harold Gould, Larry Hagman, Stacy Keach, Michael Learned, Amanda McBroom, Robert Morse, Ted Neeley, Linda Purl, Jenny Sullivan, Joe Spano, Bruce Weitz, Lillias White and Stephanie Zimbalist. The late Jack Lemmon and John Ritter both made their final stage appearances with Rubicon. Deeply rooted in the region it serves, Rubicon offers extensive outreach and education programs. The company is governed by an active Board of Directors and supported by a Board of Advisors and volunteer auxiliary.

CINCINNATI PLAYHOUSE IN THE PARK (Co-producer) Founded in 1960 and recipient of the 2004 Regional Theatre Tony Award and winner of the 2007 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical for Company, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park is celebrating its 50th season this year. The Playhouse is known for its artistic excellence, commitment to new works, extensive educational programming and as an artistic home for some of America’s best actors, directors, designers and theatre professionals. Since 1992, the Playhouse has been led by Producing Artistic Director Edward Stern and Executive Director Buzz Ward. During their tenure, the theatre has produced more than 25 World Premieres, many of which have achieved success nationally and internationally and now attracts nearly 200,000 people annually to its two theatres and maintains a subscriber community of more than 15,000. The Playhouse family includes a Board of 55 dedicated trustees, an exceptional full-time staff of 71 and hundreds of talented artists.

THEATREWORKS (Co-producer) Led by Founding Artistic Director Robert Kelley and Managing Director Phil Santora, TheatreWorks is celebrating its 40th season of award-winning theatre in the Silicon Valley. As one of the largest regional repertory companies in the San Francisco Bay Area, it produces eight mainstage productions annually at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts and the Lucie Stern Theatre in Palo Alto, as well as the New Works Festival, play readings and a variety of education outreach programs. Nationally recognized as a premiere breeding ground for new musicals, TheatreWorks presented its 53rd World Premiere with this co-production of Daddy Long Legs.Please visit

"Engaging performances" - Sarasota Herald-Tribune

"Extremely clever" - The Observer

"A musical that redefines musicals" - San Jose Metro

Watch the original stars from Daddy Long Legs learn some cockney, and talk about the production here

Read The Guardian's review of the show in Europe here

Jean Webster wrote the original novel Daddy Long Legs, which the musical is based on, read more about her here