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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

 

Stage Addiction: While We Wait...

If you're hungry for the Tony Award nominations, they'll be here later today. Until then, some tidbits to whet the appetite:

Why does London get all the good theatre? First comes news that Ewan McGregor (Moulin Rouge) and Chiwetel Ejiofor (Dirty Pretty Things) are the leads in next fall's U.K. revival of Othello. Then Orlando Bloom decides to make his stage debut in David Storey's In Celebration at Trafalgar Studios. And now there are rumors that Stockard Channing is planning to star in Awake and Sing around the same time. Sheesh. (Of course, London must also suffer for all their good luck: after a catastrophic premiere in Toronto last season, The Lord of the Rings musical is getting another shot in the West End this month. Some hobbits people never learn.)

Playwright David Mamet will return to Broadway in 2008 with his first new play in years, a political piece titled November. The director will be Joe Mantello, who helmed the author's award-winning revival of Glengarry Glen Ross last season.

The Broadway behemoth known as the Roundabout Theatre Company will open their fourth theatre space at the rebuilt Henry Miller Theatre....because Broadway needs another home for their crappy, creativity-free revivals. Oh, and speaking of...let's hope for the best when Tony winner Jefferson Mays (I Am My Own Wife) takes on Shaw's immortal Henry Higgins next September in Pygmalion at the American Airlines Theatre.

Ron Howard's film version of Frost/Nixon is taking shape. The supporting players surrounding original stage stars Frank Langella and Martin Sheen will include Sam Rockwell (Confessions of a Dangerous Mind), Toby Jones (Infamous) and Matthew Macfadyen (Grindhouse).

Ladies and gentlemen, I ask you: could Xanadu look any worse than it does in these rehearsal pictures?

And so it begins...after developing a notorious reputation during the 2003 run of Wonderful Town for missing performances due to "illness", Donna Murphy has started missing shows again for her current vehicle, LoveMusik. She missed performances this past weekend; despite a recent publicity tour that blamed the 2003 problems on vocal chord inflammation, rumors have persisted that the truth is somewhat, um, lazier. The show has now been extended into late June; time will tell the truth of this.

Late breaking Tony eligibility: the beautiful, exquisite music contained in the play Coram Boy is eligible for a Best Original Score category. It's certainly a better choice than Legally Blonde or The Pirate Queen.

Starting setting your theatre calendar for 2007-2008: The musical adaptation of John Waters' Cry-Baby will open on Broadway next March, about the same time that Harvey Fierstein's new musical, The Catered Affair, swings into town with his newly-announced leading lady, a casting choice made in musical heaven: Faith Prince (Guys and Dolls).

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