Lilli Cooper, Raúl Esparza, More Join NY City Center Encores! 'Oliver!'

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New York City Center today announced initial casting for Encores! Lionel Bart’s Oliver! directed by Encores! Artistic Director Lear deBessonet with choreography by Lorin Latarro, and new Encores! Music Director Mary-Mitchell Campbell leading The Encores! Orchestra. Deborah Stein joins the team as Concert Adaptor and Alisa Solomon will support as a consultant for the production.

The special two-week run from May 3 – 14 will feature Tony Nominee Lilli Cooper (Mack & Mabel, City Center) as Nancy, four-time Tony Nominee Raúl Esparza (Roadshow, City Center) as Fagin, Tam Mutu (The New Yorkers, City Center) as Bill Sikes, two-time Tony Nominee Brad Oscar (Mrs. Doubtfire) as Mr. Bumble, Benjamin Pajak (The Music Man) as Oliver Twist, and three-time Tony Nominee Mary Testa (Oklahoma!) as Widow Corney. Additional casting for Lionel Bart’s Oliver! will be announced at a later date.

The ensemble includes William Thomas Colin, Charity Angel Dawson, Julian Marcus DeGuzman, Zachary Downer, Sam Duncan, William Foon, Ethen Green-Younger, Jeff Kready, Jenny Laroche, Devin Miles Lugo, Morgan Marcell, Lindsay Roberts, Eliseo Roman, Michael Cash Savio, and Jacob Keith Watson.

Nominated for 10 Tony Awards, Lionel Bart’s Oliver! has been a household name since its premiere in 1960 but has not been seen on a New York City stage for nearly 40 years. This landmark revival revels in the brassy, boisterous sound of such classics as “I’d Do Anything,” “Oom Pah Pah!,” and “Consider Yourself,” and welcomes a broader community to share in the celebration of this iconic musical with a number that includes 20 public school students. The coming-of-age story of a child who dares to trust in others, search for love, and ask for more in Victorian London’s seedy underworld promises to inspire a new generation of musical theater lovers.

The 2023 Encores! season opens March 15 – 19 with Dear World starring Donna Murphy and concludes with The Light in the Piazza starring Ruthie Ann Miles from June 21 – 25. Tickets starting at $35 can be purchased online at, by calling 212.581.1212, or in person at the City Center Box Office. Access City Center Club is available to those 35 years of age and under and offers a limited number of $25 tickets (plus a $3 facility fee and no handling fees) to City Center productions. For more information and to sign up, visit New York City Center is located at 131 W 55th St between Sixth and Seventh avenues.