June 2, 2006

Des McAnuff’s Valli Journey

June 2nd, 2006

Playbill.com’s Robert Simonson’s interview with director Des McAnuff provides some insight into the journey of finding the actor to play front man Frankie Valli in Jersey Boys. Although it seems like a tall order, Tony Award-nominated director said the search for the right man wasn’t as difficult as it might have been.

Although McAnuff had a wonderful California actor, David Noroña, playing the Valli part in La Jolla, he bowed out due to personal reasons when Jersey Boys headed to Broadway. When McAnuff went searching for a new Valli, the first name that occurred to him was that of John Lloyd Young, who had been runner-up for the Valli role.

Considering a national JB tour is planned, McAnuff’s not worried about more Vallis in the future, including the two “young guys in the company who understudy the role.” The director said that a London production of Jersey Boys is also a distinct possibility—perhaps within a couple of years.

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