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The Pursuit Of Persephone

Book by Peter Mills and Cara Reichel

Music and Lyrics by Peter Mills

Duderstadt Center Video Studio

November 9 - 12, 2006


The Story:
Adapted from his semi-autobiographical novel This Side of Paradise and newly published letters detailing their courtship, The Pursuit of Persephone is the tale of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s brief, failed love affair with the beautiful and elusive debutante Ginerva King during his years at Princeton University. Knowing she was socially beyond his reach, Fitzgerald threw himself into becoming a Big Man on Campus in the hopes of being worthy of her. Their romance would spark Fitzgerald’s ferocious creativity and would inspire one of the greatest novels of the 20th century, The Great Gatsby. Set in the lofty world of elite Ivy League society at Princeton and its famed Triangle Club, The Pursuit of Persephone is a tale of a writer’s growth towards greatness.

Artistic Significance:

Nominated for two 2006 Drama Desk Awards, The Pursuit of Persephone is the seventh collaboration of husband and wife team Peter Mills and Cara Reichel whose previous works include The Flood, Illyria and the recent Iron Curtain. Mills’s score combines ragtime, waltzes, touches of early jazz, and samples of actual Triangle show songs to evoke the collegiate atmosphere and highbrow world of Ivy League society. Michael Criscuolo of states, “Anyone interested in the future of musical theatre…should catch The Pursuit of Persephone.” Don’t miss this unique opportunity to see a musical by a talented and prolific team certain to light up the Great White Way.

The Cast

Andrew Arrington (Chicago, IL), Joel Bauer (Oak Creek, WI),

Emily Bottorff (Washington, DC), Alex Brumel (Marboro, NJ),

Jamie Cooper (Olympia, WA), Janine DiVita (Overland Park, KS),

Ted Ely (Kalamazoo, MI), Peter Gosik (St. Louis, MO), Laurel Harris (Raleigh, NC), Lauren Holmes (Memphis, TN), Derek Krantz (Matthews, NC),

Michael Lowney (Missoula, MT), Riana Nelson (Olympia, WA),

Mara Newbery (Westport, KY), Justin Paul (Westport, CT),

John Rapson (Washington, MI), Josh Rouah (Ft. Lauderdale, FL),

AJ Shively (Carmel, CA), Nina Sturtz (White Plains, NY),

Benton Whitley (Goldsboro, NC)



Director Brent Wagner
Music Director Brian Lewus
Choreographer Sean McKnight
Scenic Designer Cassidy Bloom
Costume Designer Christianne Myers
Lighting Designer Elise Handelman
Stage Manager

Colin Miller

Production Photos

Click here to view photos from the production


Click here to view the program of the production

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Photography Credits:

U-M Photo Services

Joe Welsh

Peter Smith

David Smith

Glen Behring

Tom Bower