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Tuesday, February 06, 2007


Stage Addiction: I'm Sure Alec Baldwin Is Behind This Somehow

- Jane Krakowski is out of Xanadu: The Musical. Curse you, 30 Rock, and your extended television shooting schedule! Curse you to hell!!!!! (No word on a replacement, but I'll stay on top of the story. They better hurry, if they plan to open in time for Tony consideration.)

- Perhaps they're running out of children. Or perhaps they're just smutty. Whatever the reason, Broadway's The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is reaching out to a more mature audience with the announcement of Adult Night (March 4) and Gay Night (February 11). The show will feature special "adult situations" and children are expressly not allowed. While I think the whole exercise is a little craven, if dreamy Jose Llana and Barrett Foa are getting naked, I am most definitely buying a ticket.

- For one week only (March 4-11), Off-Broadway is going on sale. 27 productions, including Altar Boyz, The Voysey Inheritance, Jacques Brel, and more, will offer any seats remaining 20 minutes before curtain for just $20. That's really incredible if you think about it; you could save almost $250, if you went to every available performance time. Not that you would or anything. I'm just saying.

- After leading the Philadelphia world premiere last year, John Glover (Love! Valour! Compassion!) has dropped out of the Off-Broadway debut of Terrence McNally's gay marriage drama Some Men, opening next month. This time, the cast will feature Michael McElroy (Big River), Frederick Weller (Take Me Out), and David Greenspan (She Stoops To Comedy). Solid performers all, but a little lacking in star power...we guess they'll sell it as the "other" McNally premiere, for those who are struggling to get tickets to Deuce on Broadway (with Angela Lansbury and Marian Seldes).

- Treasure Island, based on the Robert Louis Stevenson classic, will play Broadway this summer. Because after seeing The Pirate Queen at the Hilton Theatre and Pirates of the Caribbean 3 at every multiplex in the country, you'll be dying to see another pirate show! You'll have Pirate Fever!!!!

- I'm not quite done with Treasure Island, sorry...because you've got to read their hilarious press release. "Producer Jonathan D. Moll [said] 'We're going to create for the Broadway stage the theatrical equivalent of a white-knuckle thrill-ride.' Barry's Island made its premiere at Gotham's Ohio Theater in 1996 and was subsequently seen on Sanibel Island, FL....The set, Variety says, will consist 'mainly of four rolling, interlocking platforms, accessorized with maritime elements such as barrels and ropes.' The cast of 14 — which has yet to be announced — will also perform traditional sea chanties." Yes. You read that right. Sea chanties.

- I'm often asked for recommendations, on what to see in New York theatre. At the moment, there's only one recommendation to make: Richard Foreman's Wake Up Mr. Sleepy! Your Unconscious Mind is Dead! at the Ontological. Brilliant work by the master. Go, and change the way you see theatre forever.

- A follow-up on the rumor we discussed last week, that Jennifer Hudson will star in the 2008 Dreamgirls revival on Broadway. Answer: not bloody likely. After singing "Love You I Do" at the Oscars this month, she'll be heading into the studio to record an album. Expect the requisite tour to follow, probably followed by another movie role...especially if she adds "Oscar winner" to her bio. (If you're dying to see former American Idol contestants do theatre tunes, however, may we recommend rocker-turned-thespian Constantine Maroulis, who is now in the Jacques Brel revival and the "Acoustic Delights" theatre evening at Joe's Pub on March 1st.)

- Evil Dead: The Musical (which is better than you think it would be) is closing on February 17th. Conversely, the revival of Dutchman (which is worse that you think it would be) has been extended to February 24th. This is called irony.

- Sometimes it's a crime, the neglect that sometimes happens to actresses of a certain age. In theatre, that age tends to be late thirties...how else can we explain two-time Tony nominee Carolee Carmello having to trek down to Washington D.C. to star in a Kathie Lee Gifford musical? Carolee is one of a half-dozen Broadway stars (including Marin Mazzie, Joanna Gleason, Faith Prince, and Rebecca Luker) who producers should be snapping up all the time; instead, they struggle to find parts. But heck, in a world where even well-known names like Bernadette and Betty don't work as much as they used to -- and where second-rate talent like Diana DeGarmo rule the Great White Way -- we shouldn't expect more, I guess. Insert long sigh here.

- For some reason, Andrew Lloyd Webber will appear as a guest judge on NBC's You're The Semi-Talented One That We Theoretically Want on February 11th. If you were looking for an excuse to give up on this show, we may have found it.



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