Thursday, April 26, 2012

 

TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS:

* Leap of Faith, starring Raul Esparza, Jessica Phillips and Kendra Kassebaum, opens on Broadway at the St. James Theatre.

* Roundabout‘s Don’t Dress for Dinner, with Patricia Kalember, Ben Daniels, Adam James, Jennifer Tilly, Spencer Kayden and David Aron Damane, opens on Broadway at the American Airlines Theatre.

* The Realistic Joneses, starring Tracy Letts, Johanna Day, Glenn Fitzgerald and Parker Posey, opens at New Haven’s Yale Rep.

* She’s of a Certain Age, featuring Rosemary Prinz and Robert Newman, begins previews at Off-Broadway’s Beckett Theatre.

* Man and Superman, featuring Brian Murray, begins previews at Off-Broadway’s Irish Rep.

* Uncle Vanya begins previews at Brooklyn’s Target Margin Theater.

* The BMI Musical Theatre Workshop‘s spring Smoker, free showcase of new songs from workshop writers, at 5:30 PM at BMI’s NYC office, 7 World Trade Center (250 Greenwich Street). Open to all entertainment professionals.

* An Evening with Tom Wopat and Linda Eder concert, at 8 PM at Torrington, CT’s Warner Theatre.

* Broadway Ballyhoo concert, featuring Marilyn Maye, Billy Stritch, Tricia Paoluccio, and William Blake, at 11 PM at NYC’s Feinstein’s.

* Love Letters to LA free concert, featuring Morgan Karr, Lexi Lawson, Arielle Jacobs, and more, at 8:45 PM in the plaza of Hollywood’s Egyptian Theatre.

* Amas MusicalsMarry Harry free performance, featuring Cameron Folmar, Annie Golden, Pia Glenn, Philip Hoffman, Jillian Louis, Javier Munoz,Adam Overett, Blair Ross, Mariand Torres and Katie Zaffrann, at 4 PM at NYC’s Foxwood Rehearsal Studios, 214 West 43rd Street (through April 28).

* Eric Idle’s What About Dick? staged radio play, featuring Russell Brand, Eddie Izzard, Jane Leeves, Sophie Winkleman, Tracey Ullman, Jim Piddock, Tim Curry and Billy Connolly, at 8 PM at LA’s Orpheum Theater, 842 South Broadway (through April 29).

* Cheyenne Jackson reprises his recurring role of Danny in the live episode of “30 Rock.”

* New version of Yentl, directed by Gordon Greenberg, closes at Sarasota’s Asolo Rep.

***************

THE COLUMNIST reviews:

NY Times (Ben Brantley):  ”…what The Columnist will be about has been laid out as conscientiously as it might be in the opening paragraph of a solid-A term paper. And in his first full-length play since the Pulitzer Prize-winning Proof (2000), Mr. Auburn carefully follows through and expands on every element in that early scene. As an old-fashioned architect, he can’t be faulted here. But he doesn’t furnish his rooms so that they feel genuinely lived in.”

Newsday (Linda Winer):  ”It is up to the experts to debate the facts about this complicated fellow, a New Deal liberal, a WASP Republican, McCarthy foe, war hawk and closeted gay whose fortunes soured along with Southeast Asia. As theater, however, director Daniel Sullivan’s beautifully acted production — with its seemingly effortless turntable set with the hallucinatory flying typewriter letters by John Lee Beatty — digs swiftly and stylishly into the intersections of the personal and the political.”

LA Times (Charles McNulty):  ”The play, which opened Wednesday at Manhattan Theatre Club’s Samuel J. Friedman Theatre on Broadway in a production expertly directed by Daniel Sullivan, is more engrossing as creative biography than drama. (Factual events are fictionally processed and supplemented.) But the work is elevated by a commanding performance by John Lithgow as Alsop, the effete Communist-hating syndicated columnist who wrote at a time when newspapermen ruled the world.”

NY Post (Elisabeth Vincentelli):  ”As a subject, this has great potential, intermingling politics and journalism, with the Cold War as background. But David Auburn’s play — his first since the Pulitzer- and Tony-winning Proof — is as pulse-quickening as a wire dispatch about gardening controversies.”

NY Daily News (Joe Dziemianowicz):  ”The Columnist seemed to have everything going for it. The writer, star, director and design team are all proven talents.  But you can’t make a fire with wet matches and David Auburn’s new work turns out to be a disappointingly soggy drama.”

***************

Rumor: The upcoming Broadway production of Cinderella, starring Laura Osnes and Santino Fontana, may include Harriet Harris as Cinderella’s Stepmother, Victoria Clark as the Fairy Godmother and Peter Bartlett as the Prime Minister.

***************

Initial casting has been announced for the national tour of The Normal Heart, which will launch June 8-29 at DC’s Arena Stage.

The cast stars Patrick Breen (Ned Weeks), Luke Macfarlane (Felix Turner) and Christopher J. Hanke (Tommy Boatwright).

***************

Kurt Peterson and Victoria Mallory will star in When Everything Was Possible, A Concert (with comments), for one night only, Sun. April 29  at 7:30 PM at New York City Center (131 West 55th Street, between 6th and 7th Avenues), as a benefit for BC/EFA.  Michael Rafter provides musical direction.

***************

Josh Safrna will succeed Theresa Rebeck as “showrunner” — the person in charge of all aspects of story — for NBC’s “Smash.”

***************

NYC’s Ziegfeld Theatre will screen the film version of the New York Philharmonic’s concert presentation of Company on Mon. May 7 at 2 and 7:30 PM.  Order tickets here.

Neil Patrick Harris stars as Bobby, along with Craig Bierko (Peter), Stephen Colbert (Harry), Jon Cryer (David), Katie Finneran (Amy), Christina Hendricks (April), Aaron Lazar (Paul), Patti LuPone (Joanne), Jill Paice(Susan), Martha Plimpton (Sarah), Anika Noni Rose (Marta),Jennifer Laura Thompson (Jenny), Jim Walton (Larry), and Chryssie Whitehead (Kathy), as well as Alexa Green, Fred Inkley, Rob Lorey, Jessica Vosk, Callie Carter, Ariana DeBose, Ashley Firzgerald, and Lorin Latarro.

***************

NJ’s George Street Playhouse will present An Intimate Evening with Marlo Thomas June 2 at 8 PM. Artistic director David Saint will be the evening’s host.

***************

Chad Kimball will appear in the Off-Broadway production of Dan Gordon’s courtroom drama Murder in the First, based on his 1995 film, which will begin previews May 25, open June 6, and close July 1 at 59E59 Theaters, directed by Michael Parva.

The cast also includes Joe Adams, Guy Burnet, Richard Fiske, Anthoula Katsimatides, Darren Kelly, Joe Lawless, Larisa Polonsky, Thomas Ryan and John Stanisci.

***************

NJ’s McCarter Theater has announced its final two productions of it 2012-13 season:

* Elevator Repair Service’s production of The Select (The Sun Also Rises), directed by John Collins (Oct. 26 – Nov. 4)

* Into the Woods, directed by Noah Brody and Ben Steinfeld, will use a cast of 10 actors and a single piano (May 3 – June 2, 2013)

As previously reported, the upcoming season will include Christopher Durang’s world-premiere comedy, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, A Delicate Balance and The Winter’s Tale.

***************

Hollywood’s Write Act Repertory presents the West Coast Premiere of the musical  Sophia, by Michale Antin.  Directed by Derrel Maury, with choreography by Leslie Steven and musical direction by Rocco Vitacco.  The production begins previews April 26, opens April 27 and continues to May 20.

The cast includes Melissa Bergman, Breanna Carter, Derek Houck, John H. King, Gavin Peretti, Jacqueline Rosenthal, Dwayne Stevenson, David Michael Trevino and Kathy Walters.

***************

The Eugene O’Neill Theater Center‘s National Music Theater Conference, which runs June 20 – July 13, has selected the four new musicals for development:

* When We Met, Book by Dan Collins, Lyrics and music by Julianne Wick Davis in collaboration with Sally Wilfert and Michael Winther (Performed June 20, 22 and 24)

* String, Book by Sarah Hammond, Lyrics and music by Adam Gwon
(Performed June 23, 25, 27 and 29)

* A Good Man, Book and lyrics by Philip S. Goodman, Music by Ray Leslee
(Performed June 30, July 1, 3 and 6)

* The Toy Maker, Book, lyrics, and music by Bryan Putnam (Performed July 7, 8, 11 and 13)

***************

Goodspeed Musicals has stuffed The Bikinis — a musical bursting with pop standards from the ’60s and ’70s — into its 2012 season at CT’s Norma Terris Theatre.   Conceived and written by Ray Roderick and James Hindman, with direction and choreography by Roderick, performances run Aug. 9 – Sept. 2. Casting TBA.

“Back together again! The sixties girl group that everyone loves is bringing back the sun, fun and all the great songs they sang on the boardwalk at the Jersey Shore…all to raise money to save Sandy Shores Mobile Home Beach Resort. These Jersey Girls relive their heyday in a non-stop celebration of song.”

***************

John Davidson, who appeared as the Boy in the 1964 television presentation of The Fantasticks, will join the Off-Broadway production as The Old Actor June 1-16 at the Snapple Theatre Center.

***************

Thomas Sadoski, who originated the role of Trip Wyeth in the Off-Broadway and Broadway productions of Other Desert Cities, will return to the popular and praised family drama beginning May 8 at Broadway’s Booth Theatre.

Sadoski exited the Broadway run in January to film the new Aaron Sorkin HBO series “The Newsroom.”

***************

David Yazbek will offer an evening of music from his album “Evil Monkey Man” May 30 at 7:30 PM at Joe’s Pub.  Order the CD here.  Download the mp3 here.

***************

Lisa Dillon and Stephen Mangan will star in the Royal Court Theatre‘s production of Joe Penhall’s new play, Birthday. Roger Michell will direct the production, which runs June 22 – Aug. 4 (opening June 28) in the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs.

***************

Ft. Meyers’ Florida Rep presents The Mystery of Irma Vep May 1-20, opening May 4.  The cast features Mark Chambers and Brad DePlanche, with direction by Chris Clavelli.

***************

National Theatre Live will present encore screenings of One Man, Two Guvnors at select theaters in the US, Canada, and Australia.  Click here to find a date and a theater near you.

**************

Fingerlickin’ Fierce, a one-night-only event with Michael James Scott and Asmeret Ghebremichael, will take place at NYC’s Canal Room on Mon. May 14 at 8 PM. The evening will be musical directed by Cian McCarthy and directed by Michael Potts.

***************

Michael Frayn’s 2003 play Democracy, which premiered at the National Theatre and subsequently transferred to the West End and Broadway in 2004, will be revived in London, beginning performances June 15 prior to an official opening June 20 at the Old Vic Theatre.

The cast features Andrew Bridgmont, David Cann, Patrick Drury, Richard Hope, William Hoyland, Ed Hughes, David Mallinson, Aidan McArdle, James Quinn and Rupert Vansittart.

***************

Mario Cantone, Tate Donovan, Rachel Dratch, Jackie Hoffman, Eugene Pack, Dayle Reyfel, Sherri Shepherd, and Alan Zweibel will perform in a special Mother’s Day edition of Celebrity Autobiography: The Next Chapter, to be held at NYC’s Triad Theater on Mon. May 7 at 7 PM.

The May 7 performance will include an added ‘book’ bonus especially crafted for the holiday –a round robin reading of Celebrity MOMoirs, interspersing jaw-dropping excerpts of motherly insights and advice from some of the greatest moms of all time — including Ivana Trump, Candy Spelling, Nancy Reagan, Kathie Lee Gifford, Madonna, Kris Jenner, and more.

***************

Jim Dale will perform his one-man-show Just Jim Dale at New Haven’s Long Wharf Theatre, June 14-24. Richard Maltby, Jr. will direct.

In the piece, Dale will reflect on his life growing up in England and his career, which includes his roles in Broadway’s Barnum and Me and My Girl and voicing the Harry Potter novels as audiobooks. The show will also include such songs as “Georgy Girl,” “The Lambeth Walk,” and “Leaning on a Lamppost.”

***************

Drew Lachey, Tom Alan Robbins and John Tartaglia will star in a staged reading of the musical Plop, to be held on Mon. May 7 at 1 and 5 PM. Anthony J. Cantalupo will direct.

Featuring book, music, and lyrics by Damon Intrabartolo, the show centers on an emotionally bankrupt record producer, who meets a musically talented group of boys, and starts the “boy band” trend, eventually amassing total world domination and industrialization of pop culture.

The reading is open to the public, but reservations are required. The location of the reading will be disclosed after the reservation is confirmed: info@cantontheatrical.com.

***************

Deanna Dunagan will star in Other Desert Cities, to run Jan. 12 – Feb. 17 at Chicago’s Goodman Theatre. Henry Wishcamper will direct.

***************

 

This entry was posted in Newsletter. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.