Mercury 'Barnum' gets a P.T. Barnum

Gene Weygandt will star as P.T. Barnum in the Mercury Theater's upcoming production of the musical "Barnum," the Mercury has announced. Also starring: Cory Goodrich and Summer Naomi Smart.

"Barnum," one of the first shows in the Mercury's new self-producing plan, is to be directed by L. Walter Stearns with "circus direction" by Sylvia Hernandez-DiStasi. It's the first professional Chicago production of this show, with music by Cy Coleman, in at least 20 years.  This is so-called CAT-5 Equity contract, making the Mercury, located at 3745 N. Southport Ave., one of the few dedicated musical houses in the city of Chicago  to hire a large group of Equity actors.

Opening night at the circus is slated for April 4. The Mercury is hoping the show will play for much of the summer.

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