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Tuesday, May 30, 2006

 

Stage Addiction: Next Season Preview

With everyone now just sitting around and waiting for the Tony Awards on June 11th (our picks to come next week), we're using this installment of Stage Addiction to look ahead to 2006-2007. What are we excited by...and not so much?

EXCITED BEYOND WORDS
  • 110 in the Shade (Spring) - Will Audra McDonald win her fifth Tony for this underrated revival? I'd put money on it.
  • A Chorus Line (September) - Arguably the greatest musical of my lifetime. Certainly in the top five. Charlotte D'Amboise was born to play Cassie. Can. Not. Wait.
  • The Coast of Utopia (October) - The long-gestating, three-play, seven-hour extravaganza by Tom Stoppard. Should be an event along the lines of Nicholas Nickelby or Angels in America.
  • Company (November) - Sondheim's modern masterpiece gets the once-over from director John Doyle, who's about to win a Tony for Sweeney Todd.
  • Les Liaisons Dangereuses (Spring) - One of my favorite plays/movies of all time, the Marquise de Merteuil and the Vicomte de Valmont are juicy roles for Tony-hungry stars...who will play them?
  • Our Leading Lady (November) - The latest by Charles Busch follows the 19th century stage diva Laura Keane as she prepares to perform at Ford's Theatre...on the night when Abraham Lincoln is in the audience.
  • Regrets Only (October) - Paul Rudnick (Jeffrey) updates Lysistrata to deal with the same-sex marriage debate. This will be the most hilarious night in New York when it opens.
  • [title of show] (July) - The return of the smartest, funniest, cutest musical in town. I've seen it, and want to go again.
  • The Vertical Hour (November) - Julianne Moore. In a play by David Hare. Directed by Sam Mendes. Do you even care what it's about? I don't.
  • Zhivago (Spring) - No Omar Sharif, sadly, but this show is a juggernaut. Expect it to be a major player at the 2007 Tonys.
EXCITED, BUT NOT BEYOND WORDS
  • Adrift in Macao (March) - Christopher Durang's new musical (yes, musical) is supposedly a hoot and a half, from those who've attended its workshop performances.
  • Butley (October) - Nathan Lane goes bisexual for this acclaimed revival, about a professor who loses his wife and lover all in one day.
  • Howard Katz (Winter) - Alfred Molina may have found the perfect role for him in this U.S. premiere by Patrick Marber (Closer) - a down-on-his-luck Hollywood agent.
  • Legally Blonde: The Musical (Spring) - What? I'm gay. Ridiculous campy stuff is like crack for us.
  • The Scene (February) - Theresa Rebeck's play about Manhattan socialites got raves at the Humana Festival. Can it repeat those good notices here?
  • Xanadu: The Musical (Spring) - Yes, it's that Xanadu. What, you thought there could be two?

MILDLY INTRIGUED
  • The Clean House (October) - The best writer you've never heard of, Sarah Ruhl, hits the big time at Lincoln Center with a new play about the arrival of a new maid.
  • The Country Girl (April) - The Clifford Odets renaissance continues with a revival of his seminal backstage drama.
  • Deuce (March) - I'd watch Marian Seldes read the phone book...so how bad could a new Terrence McNally play be? (See Some Men, below.)
  • Essential Self-Defense (Spring) - Pulitzer contender Adam Rapp (Red Light Winter) has been close to breaking through for some time now. Is this the play that'll do it?
  • Floyd and Clea Under the Western Sky (November) - A new buzz-heavy musical about a former country-western star and a young beauty with an electrifying voice.
  • Heartbreak House (Winter) - Philip Bosco, starring in Shaw's anti-romance masterpiece? You don't have to ask me twice.
  • High Fidelity (November) - I'm skeptical that this can work at all, but they've got David Lindsay-Abaire writing the book...and if anyone could pull it off, it's him.
  • Seven Guitars (August) - The first of Signature Theatre Company's three revivals by the late great August Wilson (to be followed by Two Trains Running in November and King Hedley II in February), one of them is bound to be a breakout hit.
MAYBE, IF THEY GIVE AWAY FREE TICKETS
  • Mary Poppins (October) - After the mixed reviews in London (and the terrible reviews for Tarzan here), Disney finds itself with something to prove. Can they deliver? (Go ahead, I'll be over here holding my breath.)
  • Suburbia (September) - Eric Bogosian's first major revival...and they didn't pick Talk Radio? Bad move.
  • Some Men (November) - Terrence McNally's schmaltzy gay wedding didn't do too well in Philly. Can he fix it before it gets to New York?
  • The Times They Are A-Changin' (November) - The Bob Dylan jukebox musical. I guess nothing is sacred.
THANKS, I'M NOT HUNGRY
  • Losing Louie (Fall) - A comedy from the West End (strike one) directed by Jerry Zaks (strike two) about childhood memories (strike three). Louie, you lost.
  • Martin Short: Fame Becomes Me (October) - Yes, it's got music by Marc Shaiman (Hairspray). But tell you what...watch that preview at their homepage, and tell me it doesn't already whiff of smarmy self-indulgent pap.
NOT EVEN IF YOU PAID ME
  • Crazy Mary (May) - Don't like A.R. Gurney. Don't like sentimental plays about insane asylums.
  • The Home Place (Spring) - After Faith Healer, I feel like I've had enough Brian Friel to last a lifetime. I'll be sitting this one out.
  • Les Miserables (October) - Kill me now.


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