Sunday, January 30, 2011

TheatreScene: January 24 - 30



BE A PART OF JKTS!  Try the crossword puzzle... Submit your list of the 6 greatest musicals of all time... Tell us about shows you've seen more than once... Check out the chorus boys and girls of 2011!  (Use the links below to see the blogs and respond!)

Back in Time: 2002: Into the Woods: Revival, Part II: The Creative Team
Broadway Crossword by Blog #5: Original vs Revival, Clue Set #1
LEGEND: Bob Fosse
The Greatest...Ever?
Ask Jeff: A Really Good Question
2011 Chorus Boys and Girls, Part I

January 24

  • 2010: A View from the Bridge opened at the Cort Theatre, starring Liev Schreiber and eventual Tony winner Scarlett Johansson.  The universally praised revival played 81 performances (a limited engagement).

  • The final (I hope - what'll be left for next season?) musical of the 2010/2011 season was announced today.  The story of the woman behind the Shirelles and many other 60's groups, Baby It's You! will open at the Broadhurst Theatre, starring Beth Leavel and American Idiot's Cristina Sajous, with previews starting March 26 and opening April 27.  Dear theatre gods, Please not another Million Dollar Quartet.  PLEASE.

  • The PR machine for Wonderland is cranking up big time!  Here are a couple of pictures.  At least we can see that the tech aspects are pretty to notch! (Kate Shindle...ouch!)
TOPS AND BOTTOMS (January 17 - 23)
  • Top Gross: Wicked ($1.4M)
  • Top Attendance: Wicked (96.5%)
  • Bottom Gross: Colin Quinn: Long Story Short ($169K)
  • Bottom Attendance: Chicago (53%)
  • SRO Club: No shows were at 100% capacity.
  • $1M Club: Wicked, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark
HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Neil Diamond, Lyricist/Composer (Dancin', Fosse)

January 25

  • 1982: The Curse of an Aching Heart played the Little Theatre (today we call it the Helen Hayes) for 32 performances.  It starred film legend Faye Dunaway, who played 4 different characters named Frances.  A whole 32 performances?

  • My boyfriend Kyle Dean Massey returns to Wicked tonight.
  • Good news never makes the National News: Spider-Man tickets are on sale now through May 8.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Ruth Williamson, Actor (The Music Man, La Cage aux Folles (2004), Smile)

January 26

  • 23 years ago...1988: The Phantom of the Opera began its record-breaking run at the Majestic Theatre.  The original cast included Rebecca Luker, who played a Princess in Hannibal.  She went on to play Christine, one of 23 actresses to do so, so far.  As of today, the chandelier has dropped 9,567 times!
  • Though I often knock it, and it will never be my favorite show, I have to give credit where it is due:  The Phantom of the Opera turned 23 today!  Wait, didn't I already say that?  I was 21 when it opened... OH MY GOD! I AM OLD!

  • I am pretty certain it won't run 23 years, but The Importance of Being Earnest got a 17 week extension.  This despite duping the public by not announcing which shows were previews, like its neighbor up the street.  This extension also moves The People in the Picture to Studio 54.  Looks like it'll be at least a year before I finally get to see a show at the American Airlines Theatre - the only one I have never been in.  (I have zero interest in Earnest.)
  • Is this the last show to be announced for the season?  The Jim Belushi revival of Born Yesterday confirmed that it would be opening this season at the Cort Theatre.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Jules Feiffer, Playwright (The Apple Tree, Oh! Calcutta!)

January 27


  • 1982:  Just 6 years before Phantom, Andrew Lloyd Webber's Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat opened on Broadway (for the first time) at the Royale Theatre, starring the late, great Laurie Beechman as the Narrator.  David Cassidy and Andy Gibb both played the title role during the run of 747 performances.
  • My boyfriend Kyle Dean Massey must not be in Wicked too long.  He will be headlining the new off-Broadway musical Lucky Guy at the New Little Shubert Theatre.  Previews: April 28. Runs through: July 24.  It co-stars three of my favorites: Jim Newman, Jenn Colella and Savanah Wise.  All three could use a big fat hit; they deserve  it!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Alan Cumming, Actor (Cabaret, ThreePenny Opera)

January 28

  • The Oldest Opening of the Week: Romeo and Juliet opened in 1754 at the New Theatre, starring Mr. Rigby and Mrs. Hallam in the title roles.
  • 2010: Time Stands Still opened at MTC's Samuel Friedman Theatre.  It re-opened this season at the Cort Theatre, where it will have played 192 performances total, as of January 30, when it closes.

  • Bring It On: The Musical opens tonight in Atlanta. Look for my blog on that very show next week!
  • Spring Awakening goes international!  The Melbourne Australia production opens tonight.
  • Mini-Rant: Linda Eder has announced a new tour and album.  Great for her.  But why do people continue to refer to her as a Broadway diva?  She's played exactly one role on Broadway for a very un-diva like 6 months (maybe a bit more), and with a pretty spotty attendance record, I might add.  Patti LuPone had years in shows before she was ever considered a diva.  Don't you have to play a leading female role, tearing down the walls with your arias night after night before you are a diva?
HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Luther Creek, Actor (Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, Hair, RENT)

January 29

  • 1966: Broadway first heard those beats that open the show that would later be the song "Hey, Big Spender," on this date when Sweet Charity opened at the Palace Theatre.  Gwen starred, Bob directed and choreographed.  One of the greatest scores ever written was supplied by Cy Coleman and Dorothy Fields, and the hilarious book was by an at-his-best Neil Simon.  It closed after 608 performances.

  • Matthew Morrison gave a free concert in LA today to benefit music education.  The concert featured songs from his upcoming solo CD.  Gleeks rejoice!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Terry Kenney, Actor/Director (The Grapes of Wrath, Reasons to Be Pretty)

January 30

  • The Longest Time Since a Show Opened: 25 years ago, in 1986 The Caretaker opened at the Circle in the Square Theatre, lasting only 45 performances.  The Pinter revival was notable for Gary Sinise's Broadway debut, and the direction of one John Malkovitch.

  • Time Stands Still closed today at the Cort Theatre, after a total of 192 performances.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Norbert Leo Butz, Actor (Wicked, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Catch Me If You Can)

(Photos from Playbill Online,, show websites, Getty Images.  Kyle Dean Massey picture from Twitter, by Mr. Massey)

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