- Bravo, OP. You MUST be the original OP it's so divine.
To answer a few questions, I think Jefferson Mays might thwart NPH more than Norbs, but the season is young!
Caroline O'Connor for Bullets?
- Don't forget Max Von Essen for this go round. And many links to full frontals
- Maybe Alec Baldwin needs to play in Hedwig and the Angry Eight Inches on Broadway?
- And, a-five, six, seven, eight ...
OP we think alike!
Karen Ziemba, TONY winning actress/dancer/people pie maker/banjo player
- Congratulations OP! That's quite an opening! Welcome back.
- So it wasn't Betty Buckley who closed the production of "Dear World" in London. It was infamous scumbag producer Stephen Levy, who can't raise a dime in NYC anymore. He didn't have the money to pay any of the bills, including Betty's hotel bill at One Aldwych!!! The show closed because Levy is still theater's #1 asshat.
- The reviews for DEAR WORLD were pretty bad. That may have had something to do with it.
- R1, I could see O'Connor in that role.
- Just saw a commercial for some gold company called "Capital Gold Group" featuring Broadway vet Bob Gunton as "Senator Forthright." Later he steps out of character and identifies himself by name. The commercial makes the outlandish claim that many economists believe that gold is going to hit $5,000/oz. Seriously?
- OP - you forgot that we also need to hear about the reason for Rory O Malley's liver transplant
- [quote]Caroline O'Connor for Bullets?... No. by: Marin Mazzie - now I get a Tony
Sorry, Marin Mazzie might be a lovely woman but she's as funny as a baby Seal clubbing video. Caroline O'Connor was funny in "A Christmas Story".
- Was Caroline the one on the atrocious Tony number? Yeah, funny.
Like a migraine.
- [quote]Was Caroline the one on the atrocious Tony number? Yeah, funny. Like a migraine.
If you have to ask, obviously you didn't see her in the theater, in the actual production on Broadway, so your opinion of it means nothing. Now get back to you your salad at the Bumfucke Dinner Theater matinee.
- Sadly, you don't get a lot of big chances in this business and O'Connor's Tony number may have hurt her future on Broadway more than it helped.
- Oh, R14, you've wounded me to the core! How shall I recover while you find your way back to the Asshat Theatre dinner show?
She had a chance to impress a national audience and she didn't. It didn't help that the music was horrible.
- I see Faith Prince for "Bullets". And she wants it badly.
- Caroline O'Connor is delightful in the bootleg video of A CHRISTMAS STORY.She was also a great Velma in CHICAGO.
- There have to be more actors and chorus boys out there with full frontal shots of Max than there are Republicans with fake mustaches and raincoats.
- [quote]She had a chance to impress a national audience and she didn't. It didn't help that the music was horrible.
Oh Honey, now you're equating yourself with a national audience? Another reason to ignore your opinion.
- I love Faith Prince, but isn't she a little long in tooth - and a little, um, overweight, to be playing Helen? Wiest was 45 and thin when she played the part.
- I saw the Dear World production - on a day when Betty was 'sick' and they sent on a visibly nervous 25 year old understudy. Overlooking that, it was still terrible. I knew things were rough when the first scene showed the 'origin' of the Mute - getting beaten and kicked in the throat for about 4 minutes.
- Kate Jennings Grant did the readings as Helen. I'd imagine she'll be replaced, but my guess is they'll go with someone in that (35-45) age bracket.
- Did Woody Allen actually turn Patti down? She said "Woody didn't see it" - does she mean he didn't see her in the part, or didn't see her audition?
Patti and an evening of Gershwin don't sound ideal, and I love her doing torch songs in concert settings.
- Ummmm, Patti is a LOT older than Faith. Can Elizabeth Marvel sing?
- OK, I have never seen Bullets Over Broadway, but what about Laura Benanti. She may be a bit young, but she is an excellent comedian.
- The Bullets fem role has to be visibly older than the Zach Braff character.
So, no Laura Benanti.
There obviously trying to cast a Hollywood name or the role would have been announced with the rest of the cast this week.
- If they don't cast an actual NAME in the Helen Sinclair it will flop. And I don't mean a theater name, I mean an actual STAR!
- I'm sure Liza or Babs will do it!
- "Sylvia Poston! The name alone REEKS of Orbach's!"
- Laura Benanti would be great as the gun moll ,hysterical even.
- "ONCE" in London is sinking fast. It's in what looks like a porn house, there's no advertising, no money being spent, and nobody's coming. Be gone September.
- You see? Brits don't be necessarily go for every stinker we send over.
- *Gawker* on AIDS & THE NORMAL HEART & other things:
- [quote] "ONCE" in London is sinking fast. It's in what looks like a porn house, there's no advertising, no money being spent, and nobody's coming.
It's in the theatre Blood Brothers was in for 25 years so perhaps the renovation they did after wasn't much of one. It's very central, but in one of the side streets you would miss easily.
But yeah, the cast and advertising didn't really start until about a month or so before the show opened. Even Dear World, with its dreadful clip-art poster, had more advertisements around.
- Too bad shows can no longer travel from one location easily to another and land in NYC.
I saw "On the Town" at Barrington Stage yesterday and it's absolutely wonderful. Minimal staging, maximum singing, dancing, and comedy.
Yes, you old queens, each sailor gets an obligatory shirtless scene and guy each is worth the view.
Yazbeck's extended shirtless dancing/ballet in act II is fabulous.
Ah, the joys of summer theater!
- Mary Zimmerman's The Jungle Book looks worse than hideous - it looks boring.
Those costumes are awful. You could walk into The Lion King having never seen the movie and guess what most of the animals are meant to be. The Jungle Book's costume ideas must have all ended with "oh, and ears and a tail."
- Don't be too hard on Betty Lynn's fail in London with Dear World. guys. The show itself is, was, and will be for all time a steaming pile. A lot of it is because of the original property, before Jerry H tried his best to make it all work.
- Anyone see Wendy Williams in Chicago?
- [quote][[R566]] Rumor has it they did cause Jon hasn't been seen with ZQ since Feb. Rumor is Miles McMillan is ZQ's new piece cause he starting following Miles on instagram and wished him a happy birthday. Guy's also a model, which explains why ZQ is showing up at fashion shows now.
From the last reply of #114 regarding Quinto. Does anyone know if this is true?
- I'd love to see Lily Rabe Lily Rabe-ing as Helen Sinclair. Appropriately made-up, she can read as much older than she is.
Has Caroline O'Connor ever played either of Barbara Harris' Broadway musical roles?
- Btw, who wrote the alternate versions of Zip? Hart was long dead by the time Marilyn Monroe became a talking point (the Rita Hayworth/Jo Ann Greer version). And Jo Hurt sings different lyrics to Elaine Stritch as well.
- But isn't Lily still Rabeing once again on AHS? And she sure does play (and then some) older than she actually is.
- I liked the Elizabeth Marvel idea for "Bullets"! Excellent actress and bet she can sing - or could learn to sing if she can't.
- Can Jean Smart sing? I know she's 61, but she would be hilarious as Helen Sinclair and can play younger. Though with the insufferable Brooks Trashcanasskiss in it, I don't see much hope for the show.
- Jean Smart was offered Phyllis in Follies, so she can probably carry a tune.... Then again, so was Kim Catrall.
- How is Kim Cattrall's singing voice? She could be a fun Helen Sinclair.
Caroline O'Connor has played every role under the sun in some place or another. Rose, Aldonza, Fanny, Mabel, Mrs Lovett...
- Cattrall sang a bit in Private Lives. It was bad, apparently - but perhaps it was a character choice in tribute to Gertrude Lawrence.
- Problem being, Kim has forgotten how to act on the stage. That would kill her chances. I'd rather see Marvel, but Marvel won't sell tickets.
- Hasn't Catrall been treading the boards more in the last decade than ever before? Or have her stage gigs just been more high profile?
- She's currently playing Alexandra De Lago/Princess Kosmonopolis in Sweet Bird of Youth at the Old Vic.
- I wonder if Kevin is making Seth Numrich share a dressing room with him.
- Carol O'Connor was on the Tonys this year? To pay tribute to Jean Stapleton?
- Patti said on broadway.com she auditioned (first time in a long time!) but WA didn't see her audition.
- Why would anyone want to see a picture of Max Von Esssen's junk? Isn't he supposedly small?
- Kim Catrall can't sing - she has worked hard on it, though. She is a good stage actress - definitely worth seeing.
- Saw Educating Rita at Weston in Vermont, one of the better summer places. Excellent production. Lots of the Steppenwolfies go there for summer.
- Allen didn't see her in the role, not didn't see the audition.
- So are the Michael Arden naked pics for real? Coming to a theater near me?!?
- [quote] But isn't Lily still Rabeing once again on AHS?
Production on Season 3 of AHS will be wrapped by Christmas. Since BULLETS isn't scheduled to open until March 2014, it wouldn't be an issue.
- Rabe's meant to be starring in a Mary Pickford biopic. I hope it happens.
- This thread is getting off to a weird start...
1) OP, are you slipping? THE KING AND I wasn't included in the announcement of Lincoln Center's next season, and Kelli O'Hara is going to be doing THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY instead.
2)Anybody who things Marin Mazzie can't be brilliantly funny onstage obviously didn't see her (live or on video) as Lily Garland in ON THE TWENTIETH CENTURY.
3) Everyone I know thinks Caroline O'Connor and the number from A CHRISTMAS STORY came across very well on the Tonys, so I don't know what you bitches who say otherwise are talking about.
- Having seen Caroline O'Connor onstage, I don't think the Tonys number showed how good she can be.
I don't think it was bad, it just wasn't a knockout.
- r3and r19 how can there be frontal pix if he's always face down or on all fours?
- Saw Caroline O'Connor about ten years in CHICAGO and she was great. Very funny and quirky. She looks a bit like Betty Boop, though, and I detest Betty Boop.
Has anyone ever seen someone recording a Broadway show? Some of those bootlegs looks great.
- R62: because we don't agree with you and your friends who will apparently laugh at anything.
- R66, so you think Caroline O'Connor is supposed to be hilariously funny in "You'll Shoot Your Eye Out?" You think that's her main function in that number? I see.
- What's with the weird obsession on this thread with casting a young woman in the Wiest role in BULLETS OVER BROADWAY? What kind of gays are we?
- Lily Rabe and Laura Benanti read older.
- I wish somebody like Beth Leavel could play the Weist role - but yeah - they'll probably go for some some TV actress fromt the 90's - or a name Brit.
- lol r69
Why is it that none of you have mentioned the PERFECT age-appropriate talent who could easily conquer the comedic singing role of the diva in BULLETS OVER BROADWAY??
- Too short, R71.
- R62 thinks the thread is off to a weird start because people are posting opinions he doesn't agree with. Stop that, people, stop it now! Marin Mazzie is a hoot! Caroline O'Connor was brilliant on the Tonys! Any other opinion is WEIRD!
- R67, have you finished licking out Caroline yet?
- At least the opinions have something to do with what's going on on Broadway today. The opinions are not about the Gummers, drama school credentials, or somebody's weekly nut. That's a cool achievement. Banjo time!
- How about Christine Ebersol?
- Woo Hoo
- Christine is doing her sitcom
- How about Debbie Shapiro Gravitte? Her kids have gone off to college and she's apparently quite the bitch in real-life, so...
- Fuck the staircase, I'll play Helen Sinclair!
- Not just my opinion, R73. I've head/read nothing but praise for Caroline O'Connor in A CHRISTMAS STORY until I came to DataLounge. Well, there you have it...
And as for Kelli O'Hara, I'm just surprised the OP didn't mention THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY but did mention THE KING AND I, which may happen eventually at Lincoln Center but not this coming season.
- Rebecca Luker for The King and I!
- Lily Rabe could out-distance any of those Gummer girls in back stage bitchiness.
Believe me, I've been there.
- Kelli O'Hara and Thom Sesma in Rodgers and .... excuse me, Rodgers + Hammerstein's THE KING AND I Fall 2015. Lincoln Center Theater.
Kevin Gray sadly passed so Sesma is the King.
- Is it worse that Woody Allen couldn't be bothered to attend Patti's audition or is it worse that he saw her and felt she couldn't nail the role?
Frankly, I think she's the perfect actress for it.
- Wait - Debbie Gravitte is a bitch? She at least has a sense of humor about herself, unlike some big-voiced, aging divas.
And she looks great for 59, which she hits in September.
- In this pc day and age can the King of Siam be reasonably portrayed by an actor of ANY Asian ethnicity?
- Thom Sesma? Talk about a BITCH. We called him "Tom Smegma" and even that was too good for him.
- [quote]Has anyone ever seen someone recording a Broadway show? Some of those bootlegs looks great
I wonder how the hell they do it too. I know of two. One NY pased, the ohter out of Chicago area.I have close to 300 bootlegs and many of them are pristine. The new one for SONIA/VANYA/SPIKE ?? whatever it is called looks great after the first few minutes so the the taper gets settled. You can practically see .. in fact you can see the outline of Billy's cock.
Anxiously awaiting PIPPIN boot. Saw PIPPIN last week on Broadway... have tickets to see it again in August.
theater queen collector and theater goer.
- R71- Plus she's doing ON THE TWENTIETH CENTURY for the Roundabout cut rate Theatre Company. If that gets good reviews, it will probably extend.
Gerald Nolan Funk... remember me?
- Well, r37, you would have been happy had they used the theme park mascot costumes, I suppose.
Seeing as how you'd like everything spelled out for you, why don't you just watch the film?
- Helen will probably be played by Sutton Foster. You know how the casting game goes..
Jen 'Cuddles' Cody, currently wowing them in GYPSY somewhere out there
- Mary Zimmerman has done great shows before, but I think like Taymor, she got entirely too up her own ass for a while.
- Bai Ling for the King!
- Woody Allen created Helen Sinclair. If he doesn't see Patti in the role, that's his prerogative.
- LuPone may not have actually auditioned. She might just have had a meeting with Woody Allen.
- Agreed about Gravitte. She needs to be doing MAME, Gypsy et al. in the regions. Not Longshoreman McArdle
- Debbie Gravitte is a great broad and the total opposite of a bitch. Also, her sons are hot!
- Well, Debbie's husband is hot so why not?
- [quote]Gerald Nolan Funk... remember me?
No, and apparently neither do you.
NOLAN GERARD Funk
- r84 is that true or your prediction? Sesma is doing it in Wichita sometime this summer
- LCT will go far afield to cast the King, you can be sure. Think of all the NY actors that could have played Emile deBecque in South Pacific and weren't cast!
- LOL R100
Funk Nolan Gerald
- R101 He's doing KING next week at MTW. He has beena pproached for the Kelli O version but who knows? I think a younger sexy Asian... like that actor from LOST, would work.
Lou Diamond Phillips..... I could still do it guys!
- Sorry, that last Sesma post was for R101.
- While we know Nolan Gerard Funke was once a go-go dancer, do we know for sure whether or not he likes dick in real life? He was a boring Conrad Birdie but his body in the gratuitous shirtless scene was breathtaking!
- How do you think the director "discovered" Funke? At an audition?
An audition in his bedroom perhaps. Or on the kitchen counter.
- Gerard pleasured many chorus boys back when he was on the Great White Way. However, he didn't get around to Max Von E.
- The King of Siam barely has to carry a tune so the field is wide open!
- Seth Numrich is a hot fuckin' piece.
I wonder if he's fucking Cattrall or Spacey in London.
- Has anyone else seen Norm Lewis in a Cialis ad?
- Is Norm in a tub next to his boyfriend in a matching tub?
- I would have absolutely no need for Cialis if I were in a hot tub with Norm Lewis.
- Norm likes the homosex, right?
- What about Joanna Gleason for Bullets in Wiest's role?
She's worked with Woody many times and he's very fond of her
She has a great singing voice and is a matchless Bakers Wife
She beat Patti LuPone for a leading Tony
So why can't she beat Patti Lupone for this role?
- [quote]Anyone see Wendy Williams in Chicago?
A friend of mine went Sunday when his flight was cancelled and he had to stay over another night. He said "Bless her heart. That's about the best thing I could say about that."
- [quote]Lily Rabe could out-distance any of those Gummer girls in back stage bitchiness.
Believe me, I've been there.
R83, details please?
- Joanna Gleason is 65+ Isn't she supposed to be romantically viable for the lead?
- Wendy showed a clip of her CHICAGO performance on her talk show yesterday. I really like her and admire her for having the guts to do something so out of her comfort zone like this but the little snippet she showed was pretty cringeworthy. Wishing her the best, though (think she said she'll be there through August).
- I'm surprised Christine Baranski hasn't been mentioned for Helen Sinclair.
- Sad to report that someone on another board said that Wendy Williams does indeed throw in a "How YOU Doin"? at the end of "When You're Good To Mama". She is not only out of her comfort zone, but out of character- that is if she even bothered to create one which I doubt. I hope Sweet Brown replaces her.
Fran and Barry seeing the grosses go up due to our creative casting.
- Is the Can-Can workshop happening this week with Megan Hilty? David Lee from Frasier has written a new book and directing. Does anyone know who else is in the cast?
- I didn't see A CHRISTMAS STORY, but I found Caroline O'Conner to be seriously lacking as Phyllis in the Chicago Shakespeare production of FOLLIES. Maybe she was just miscast. That role seems to be a bad choice magnet.
- I was surprised at O'Connor in Follies. Apart from Lucy & Jessie, she underplayed the part. It was a nice contrast to Jan Maxwell's take.
- Word on the Rialto is that Alec Baldwin will be joining the Paula Deen Dolly company as Horash. They were first going to revive The Entertaining Mr. Sloane, but then thought better of the idea.
[quote]Sad to report that someone on another board said that Wendy Williams does indeed throw in a "How YOU Doin"? at the end of "When You're Good To Mama". She is not only out of her comfort zone, but out of character- that is if she even bothered to create one which I doubt. I hope Sweet Brown replaces her.
AIN'T NOBODY GOT TIME FOR THAT!!!
although I'd love to see her take on Mama Morton!!
- Can't someone find a better vechicle for NPH other the Hedwig? It's an awful show and he's way too talented to waste his time on this.
- Sweet Brown would probably be better than that amazon drag queen with an unflattering wig.
- Wasn't John Cameron Mitchell supposed to be THE next young hot artiste? It turns out he was a one-hit (well semi-hit) wonder.
- [quote]Wasn't John Cameron Mitchell supposed to be THE next young hot artiste? It turns out he was a one-hit (well semi-hit) wonder.
Didn't he get rather heavily involved in sexual politics? It seems to have distracted him from theater and film.
- He made a porn as a follow to Hedwig and was instantly dismissed by Hollywood.
- Shortbus is hardly porn.
- r122 can't-can't is week of 15 July
- The show that would have fit NPH to a T is How to Succeed, but we're not ready for that yet, as the children did it not long enough ago. Heil would have been perfect: self-serving and charming all at the same time.
- but...How To Succeed is such an awful show
- NPH is a bit long-in-the-tooth for that role.
He could do the Jack Cassidy role in She Loves Me.
- Mitchell's film of Rabbit Hole was very underrated.
- NPH for How To Succeed.........?
He is 40 and looks it.
- [quote] Shortbus is hardly porn.
- Neil Patrick Harris is making the typical star mistake. Forcing his own desires to show "he can do more" on an audience. They're gonna hate him in Hedwig.
- Debbie Gravitte would be great
- r135 it's a great show that Rob Assford ruined
- "It's a great show that Rob Assford ruined."
- Whats the real word on Willy Wonka ?
- Assford also ruined Promises. Why do the Brits love him?
- Assford has ruined every show he has worked on.
- NPH IS Mame!
- [quote]NPH IS Mame!
What role can David play?
David, home alone with the twins
- From what I've heard Debbie Gravitte is considered, unfairly or not, to be pretty nuts. Director's don't want to deal with her and casting people avoid bringing her in for things.
- Benanti is turning down theater right now since she has a recurring role on Royal Pains.
- So Bette tells the NYT's Patrick Healy that "I'll Eat You Last" will probably play LA, and that she'd love to do MAME, but she doesn't think she has eight shows a week in her.
Would some producer do it with a matinee Mame, like Evita? The last time that was tried with stars, probably, was Mary Martin and Robert Preston in I Do, I Do, but their matinee replacements were also stars.
Bette for Mame, Christine Ebersole for the matinees?
- LIZA for MAME!
- LIZA IS MAME!
- Bette would be better as Vera.
- Midler should bring something to London - she hasn't performed much outside the US in years.
- Bette should have been Carlotta in "Follies," but that boat's sailed.
- Naw - Midler's all wrong for Carlotta. But she would have been a great Hattie.
- Patrick Healy's adorable in that filmed interview with Midler. No wonder rat-faced Riedel hates him so much.
So who's had Patrick? Who's his bf? How big's his dick? Does he look good in flip-flops?
- But hasn't Gravitte done replacement gigs in the likes of Les Mis and Chicago - why would they allow someone who's nuts into well-oiled machines like those shows.
I imagine the time that's elapsed between her Tony win has humbled her somewhat. Or is she like Ellen Greene?
- Did Debbie win a Tony? I don't think so.
- Does gorgeous Beau Gravitte still act?
- Bette isn't classy enough for Mame. Dolly would be a much better fit.
- Though the current Hello, Dolly! at Goodspeed doesn't have stars and won't transfer, its success or lack thereof may foretell a Broadway revival (or not).
- You mean its success at the box office or its success with whatever Times third-stringer reviews it, r163? Neither would seem to me to have much to do with an unrelated production's prospects on Broadway.
- Kathie Lee Gifford is perfect for Helen Sinclair.
She won Best Featured Actress in a Musical for Jerome Robbins' Broadway.
- Actually, Kathie Lee would probably be up for being Bette Midler's alternate as goddamn Dolly Levi.
- Ellen Greene as 'Shitty Little Anne'.
- Debbie's Tony competition in 1989:
Jane Lanier – Jerome Robbins' Broadway as Socialite/2nd Dancer
Faith Prince – Jerome Robbins' Broadway as Ma/Tessie
Julie Wilson – Legs Diamond as Flo
Debbie won for singing "Mr. Monotony." Period.
This year is better known as The Starmites Year.
- Given who the leads are at Goodspeed, they should have changed it so that Horace ends up in a threesome relationship with Barnaby and Cornelius, and Dolly walks down the aisle with Mrs. Molloy.
- Oh Jesus, Dame Brantley is once again on his Rainbow Tour of the theaters of London.
Meanwhile local theaters across the United States and Canada produce very good productions* which would greatly benefit by the national exposure.
*productions: meaning all plays and musicals NOT written by Stephen Sondheim, since all Sondheim must receive breathless NY Times coverage even if they are presented at a rodeo.
Perhaps British theatergoers are allowed to fuck him as they exit the show. Works with chorus boys here in NYC.
- The New York Times isn't supposed to be some booster-ish "See America First!" promotional paper, r171. I think coverage of what's going on in London theatre is newsworthy and of interest to a lot of readers.
- I just got an image in my head of A Little Night Music being presented at a rodeo.
I think I'd go.
- STOP PRESS. The upcoming My Fair Lady revival for the Nederlanders helmed by Bart (Eek) Sher cannot get either Peter Firth or Ann(e) Hathaway. So....
Alec ("I'd put my foot in your ass") Baldwin with Paula ("I is what I is") Deen would do well with both iconic characters. And probably keep the St. James on TDF for the entire run.
- That would be Colin Firth, not Peter.
- I very much doubt Bette could do even 6 shows a week of Dolly or Mame.
- R176. That would also be correct. And before coffee! Thanks.
- Zachary Quinto DOES indeed seem to be spending time with that model Miles McMillan as, according to Instagram, they were both in Paris and now they are both in Amsterdam.
Isn't it strange and sad for a 36 year-old man to be following a 21 year-old model around... ?
- No, it's not.
- And Kelly Bishop won for singing a third of "At The Ballet" and a few one-liners. What's your point r169?
- I Patrick Healy sitll in love with Bobby Steggert ?
- Jealous much, r179?
- r173, I agree with you but r171 also has a point. Of course London theatre is newsworthy but keep in mind part of Brantley's function in going over there and covering everything is so producers can move those shows on his reviews.
That is all fine and as it should be but the Wall Street Journal covers regional theater in the US much more completely that the NY Times even attempts to. However, a WSJ rave isn't really enough to move a show on, but the Times review would be.
It isn't "America First" it is just a reality that you can't move a regional show into NYC without a rave from a TOP critic @ the times. That means either Isherwood or Brantley. The Times sends 3,4th and 200th string critics to cover regional productions even in the tri-state area.
No Matter how good a review is in the Times if it is from a lower rung critic, it can't move anything.
Isherwood goes to Chicago once in a while but won't go anywhere else. I don't think Brantley has ever reviewed a regional production.
The Times editor for Theater is really the one to point a finger at.
On top of that, as a producer, I can tell you that bringing the full cast of an English production to Broadway is much easier [with AEA] than taking a full American cast to the West End is with British Equity.
I think the Times should have Brantley and Isherwood cover select regional theater in America AND have one of them cover England as well.
- Brantley and Isherwood regularly cover premieres of many new works at the better US regional theaters but they rarely will see a classic play without name stars, no matter how good the revival might be.
Whereas they often review Shakespeares and other classics in London with actors we've never heard of here....until the classic transfers to Broadway because of the Times rave and beats out all the Americans for Tonys.
- Kelly Bishop, R181? You just made my point.
- My point with Kelly Bishop - and Betty Buckley in CATS for that matter - is that it's not the size or supposed 'quality' of the role, but the impact of the performer that can facilitate a Tony win.
It says something that Gravitte (and Bishop) won over castmates from the same show rather than that fact causing votes to be split.
And she really made something of Mr Monotony, which can so easily be... monotonous.
- And it was a really, really crappy year.
- Debbie also played Claire in the On the Town segment and Mazeppa in the Gypsy segment of Jerome Robbins Broadway.
And Mr. Monotony was one of the only solo segments in the entire (loooong) evening. Maybe the only one?
- And yet Charlotte D'Amboise got the leading actress nod, right. What were her roles?
- Can Gravitte act?
- [quote]And she really made something of Mr Monotony, which can so easily be... monotonous.
Actually, Jerome Robbins made something of "Mr. Monotony"
And what was Gravitte, a singing dog?
- An entire thread about Debbie Gravitte? WTF?!? She hasn't worked in a dog's age for Pete's sake.
- [quote]And what was Gravitte, a singing dog?
Pretty much. Have you ever worked with Jerome Robbins? He is pretty legendary as total control freak. He will tell the dancers when to sweat and how much.
- By that token, shouldn't the performances in the 1980 revival of West Side Story been as good as the original? Debbie Allen aside, they were nowhere near as good.
- Kelly Bishop for Vera
- I agree with R177 -- Bette said I'll Eat You Last was hard seven times a week and it was a short play in which she was sitting the whole time. Dolly and Mame are marathon roles--I would have loved to have seen her as Dolly, the better fit, but another couple ships have apparently sailed.
NPH would be dandy in Barnum--but compared to Hedwig, that's a "safer" choice.
- Maybe Bette could alternate with Elaine.
- Midler's a whiner who hated how much work her sitcom was, there's no way she's doing a show where she's expected to move. Maybe she should consider a revival of WHOSE LIFE IS IT ANYWAY?
- NPH is making a huge mistake with HEDWIG. His television audience is not the demographic for a musical this edgy. He's going to alienate a lot of people. And I would think he'd be petrified of doing that.
Oh well, he's still got residuals, David, and the kids.
- The should have kept Nice Work going and thrown her in after Blythe.
- r201 Kinky Boots just won the Tony even though we all would have sworn the world was drag queened out. Harris has done well enough and is at a stage in his career where he no longer needs the people who might be "alienated" by Hedwig. Also, who ARE those people? I'm sure they were already alienated by his coming out and his non-trad family.
- "Midler's a whiner who hated how much work her sitcom was, there's no way she's doing a show where she's expected to move. Maybe she should consider a revival of WHOSE LIFE IS IT ANYWAY?"
I love you, R200. And yes, if Midler was only willing to do seven (rather than eight) perfs. a week of of a 90-minute, non-musical play in which she literally remained seated throughout, I think it's an understatement to say she's not up to eight a week of MAME or any other musical with a marathon star role. Plus, she couldn't be wronger for MAME.
- Debbie Shapiro (don't care what she calls herself now, she'll always be a Shapiro to me) was supposed to play Tessie in the Mendes Gypsy revival and standby for Peters. Not quite sure why it didn't happen. Same with Michele Pawk though I think she was offered just Tessie and not the Peter's standby gig.
I would love to have seen Debbie as Rose.
I thought she was great in JRB and deserved the Tony. She also gave one of the funniest Tony speeches ever.
- Maybe Peters was intimidated - Rose's songs suit Debbie's voice far more than Peters'
- I only know Shapiro Gravitte from recordings. Her vocals on the Encores' TENDERLOIN are exemplary, especially 'My Gentle Young Johnny'.
- It was Patti's dry sense of humor that caused her to wisecrack "Woody didn't see it," meaning he didn't see her as Helen Sinclair. It would be the same as her saying "He didn't buy it." If he wasn't present at her meeting/audition she would have either said "Woody wasn't present" or Woody wasn't in attendance."
Why not Caroline O'Connor as Helen Sinclair?
- I think Debbie would make a great Rose, but it seems like she would have been such a hugely different Rose than Bernadette that I wonder how well it would have worked to have her as Bernadette's understudy. Not saying they would have wanted somebody to go out and give a carbon copy of Bernadette's performance (and I didn't see Maureen Moore so I don't know what she did), but it seems like Tammy Blanchard and John Dossett and the other actors would have had to make fairly significant adjustments to their performances on nights they were acting with Debbie's more traditionally loud-broad/railroading Rose instead of Bernadette's more wheedling, kewpie-doll one. Or am I way off on this?
- I think Caroline O'Connor could probably pull off Helen Sinclair, but "grande dame" isn't a natural fit for her.
- R208, that's probably it. I see it now.
- I'm sure Bette has the energy and stamina for Gypsy or Mame. Even though she sat through the entirety of "I'll Eat You Last," she was the SOLE performer in it. All eyes were on here, all the time. There was not a moment when she could catch her breath and relax. It would be much easier to perform in an ensemble, when all the lines aren't your responsibility. Giving a 90 minute monologue very single night is exhausting, regardless of whether you're sitting down or standing up.
- She may have the stamina, R212 but I don't think she has the desire to do any hard work.
- Agreed, r213, I think it's less a matter of actual physical stamina than the actor's attitude toward it. You would think Angela Lansbury at age 87 wouldn't have the stamina to play a role like Miss Daisy, and on the road to boot - but I think it's clear that she feels that working on stage is what's keeping her vital and, probably, keeping her alive, so she does it. Whereas Julie Andrews at age 60 in VICTOR/VICTORIA I think was doing it for complex reasons involving the weird dynamics of her relationship with Blake Edwards and their financial investment in the show, and not because she actually had any real desire to perform a Broadway musical eight times a week for a long run. So no wonder she bitched in interviews from the beginning about how exhausted she was and ended up missing tons of performances - she didn't truly want to be there in the first place.
And I don't think Bette truly wants to be there either.
- I'll be curious to see if they can make Hedwig work on Broadway.
I loved it at the Jane Street, but after seeing it in the West End, I came to the conclusion that it's very site-specific. If you're in a swell neighborhood and have just come from an expensive restaurant, it all comes off a little precious.
- Would have loved to have seen Pawk as Rose.
- Stars! I want stars! And what do I get? Wannabes.
(from the musical version of The Glass Menagerie.)
- Do some of you reside in Bette's twat?
- I love Pawk, and yes, I would have liked to have seen her Rose too.
After the Mamma Mia trial, how's her voice these days? Anybody know?
- Gravitte has a dynamite voice. I use to have a video tape of her singing Welcome To The Theater from Applause from some TV show and it was terrific. Though she did wear one of the ugliest dresses I have ever seen. Her narrator in Zorba was fantastic too-belting her heart out! And her hubby is one of the most handsome men I have ever met.
Here it is.
- Kazee moving back to L.A.
- I still prefer Bacall's rendition. She inhabits the song completely and gives it a nuanced, personal performance.
- R223. She may inhabit it, but she sure doesn't sing it. In fact "sing" and"Bacall" can't really appear in the same sentence.
- Do any of you know the 1996 Carnegie Hall cast recording of Irving Berlin's LOUSIANA PURCHASE? Amazing score though the book sounds trying!
It's one of my favorite old CDs and Debbie Gravitte shines in it, belting out the title tune and The Lord's Done Fixed Up My Soul.
Though Judy Blazer is even better. It's a shame her Broadway career never took fire (pun intended).
- "She may inhabit it, but she sure doesn't sing it."
Who cares? I prefer "meaning" over "well-sung" any time.
- [quote]I can tell you that bringing the full cast of an English production to Broadway is much easier [with AEA] than taking a full American cast to the West End is with British Equity.
When it's an actual company - like the National or RSC - yes. But not when it's, say, Billy Elliott or anything else. And we don't have a National equivalent to send over as a full company.
And when the Brits DO send over an RSC or National production, you can bet that every one of those contracts begets a contract-for-contract gig in the UK for an American.
- Why all the debate about Bette's stamina? That's what she actually says in the article - that she'd love to play Mame, but she doesn't have the performance schedule in her. And kudos to those who are able to play eight shows a week.
Re the roles, of course she would be better cast in an imaginary Broadway Dolly revival, but she would never touch that role because of the Streisand connection.
- r227: Who are all these non-star American actors getting to originate roles on the London stage??
The only ones who comes to mind are Gavin Creel in Book of Mormon and Seth Numrich in Sweet Bird. But hardly the countless numbers of Brits that appear on Broadway.
Three of the longest running recent London transfers Wicked, Jersey Boys and Hairspray have all had British casts throughout their runs.
- Off the top of my head, non-stars originating West End roles (musicals only), in the last few years:
Jared Gertner - Book Of Mormon
Heather Headley - The Bodyguard
James T Lane - Chorus Line
Sean Palmer - Crazy For You
Caissie Levy - Ghost
Patina Miller - Sister Act
Sierra Boggess - Love Never Dies
Jonathan Groff - Deathtrap
Michael Arden - Aspects Of Love
- Idina Menzel originated Elphaba in London...
- Haha - I included Groff by mistake. He made SRB's heart sing, does that count?
- Sean Palmer's ass is of such internationally recognized enormity and significance that it permits him to work in any country, no questions asked.
- Does that mean Joshua Buscher's going to cross the pond?
- Yes, r234, I believe Sean Palmer, Joshua Buscher, Brian Letendre, and Tony Yazbeck all have the right to work in Britain at any time of their choosing, along with a weekly private reception at Prince Edward's home on their evening off.
- Whatever happened to class? Two women seated next to my friend and me in the third row at AVENUE Q last night took out fish sandwiches that stunk to high heaven and started eating them RIGHT THERE in the third row. I would've complained if not for the fact two ushers were standing at either end of our row and had to have seen them -- there's no way they could have missed them -- and did not seem the least bit concerned, so we figured maybe this is food the theater actually sells to people to eat inside?? Thankfully, just after the lights went down and the opening number started, they finished eating and put the cartons away, so the smell quickly dissipated.
- R236 It could've been worse. You could've been sitting next to Cheryl. That smell NEVER goes away.
- R229, you really don't know how it works, do you? It IS contract for contract, but there's no rule about someone having to originate a role. When there's a balance in the British Equity bank, Americans can go in as replacements in long-running shows, or even occasionally, in a major regional venue.
- Did someone mention.. MAME??
Happy 4th, guys!
- Do we know what theater Hedwig will use yet?
- Whichever theatre it is, it'll be free soon after it opens. Hedwig is a piece of crap that was of its time. No one gives a shit about it now.
- No one gave a shit about it then.
- I also don't think there's an audience for Hedwig but the show has merit. It's the first musical where a rock score is justified and works (even if it has little musical value in and of itself) because the show is about the rebellious sensibility that created and informed the genre.
- Imelda Staunton for Helen St. Clair!!
- I hate anybody who could hear "Wicked Little Town" or "The Origin of Love" and declare "Hedwig" "little musical value in and of itself."
I just think what douchebags you must be. I guess we'll find out if "Hedwig" was ahead of her time and if her time is now, won't we?
- R245 = David Burtka, obviously deluded
- "Wicked Little town" and "The Origin of Love" are the only good songs in "Hedwig" - and they're just that, good, not great.
The rest of it is shit - it sounded dated even in the late 90s, because it was born out of punk, which had moved on and evolved by then. It should have been done in the 1980s. At least then it wouldn't have been dated when it was new.
- Bette Midler is considering a Broadway run of Beckett's Happy Days.
- Quite right r230 - not to mention in the recent revival of Hair in the West End the entire US cast of Hair led by Gavin Creel came over. Great show great cast.
- I get it, R248.
- Now, there's a show people would flock to-Bette up to her neck in sand.
- [quote]Now, there's a show people would flock to-Bette up to her neck in sand.
Only if the audience was given a spade as they entered the theater.
- Is anyone ever going to post the Michael Arden pics? Or are they an urban legend?
- [quote]Only if the audience was given a spade as they entered the theater.
Now they let spades in the theater?
- The Michael Arden pictures are a MacGuffin, that's all.
- Laugh all you want bitches, but Bette in Happy Days could be interesting. But it would be hilarious if she just kept doing roles requiring minimal movement.
- r255, so you mean they exist but they're there only to propel the plot of this thread -- otherwise, they're not important.
- is Hal luftig as dumb as he seems?
- Imelda Staunton doesn't have the, ummm, stature to play Helen St. Claire.
- I think NPH will be great as Hedwig...but wonder if it will sell on Broadway. I love that show...as much as some people love Gypsy or anything Sondheim does. It came out of the mid-90s Squeezebox scene, which was a wonderful, special, disgusting place that had a lot of impact for a few years, and held off the ravages of the Giuliani era in its small confines.
I saw the show a lot at Jane St. (14 times, which hardly compares to most Hedheads, including folks who saw it hundreds of times), and I saw all the NYC Hedwigs except Ally Sheedy, who kept missing shows because she was "tired" or something.
I brought friends to it, and they fell in love with it as well.
I totally don't expect that kind of experience on a Broadway stage, and unless there's some kind of special deal, I don't anticipate seeing it more than once. (Late shows Fridays were $20 for balcony seats, I think).
However, the show is one of my all-time favorites, and I'm glad to revisit my past.
- Hedwig just isn't gonna work in a big Bway house, so the test for NPH is how long he can keep it running despite that. It seems like a kind of power trip, like he wants to do it just for the challenge, but of course people said the same thing about Boy from Oz.
- I loved Hedwig at the Jane St., too. But then I saw it in the West End in a proper London theatre and it was a very, very different story. Turns out that a good neighborhood and a nice facility undermine the experience big time. Even with Michael Cerveris (who I thought was brilliant in NYC), it came off precious and boring.
- I hated Hedwig.
- didn't Bette just do a whole year of concerts in Vegas? Seems like a concert would be more strenuous than Mame. I call BS on her reason.
- Did anyone see Ally Sheedy in Hedwig?
- Bette finished Vegas about 18 months ago I thought. Plus, vegas was 90 minutes and she had a lot of scenes where the Harlettes would be the only performers onstage with more Vegas dancers.
All that said, I just think she doesn't want to do theatre all that much, especially with an ensemble. Mame is in about 10 songs, but not all of them are solos, and not all of them require a lot of dancing. Plus if Midler was cast she would probably call the shots to an extent, having choreography tailored to her (get Toni Basil on the phone!)
- had I been nominated I'd return to BWAY but now I'm bitter about the great white way.
- Bette's concerts, though physically vigorous, allow her quite the latitude of ad libbing and cutting numbers randomly with each performance and without affecting any other performers sharing the stage. It's not like a classic Broadway revival under the microscopes of every Theatre Queen in town.
- Can we all agree it's somewhat admirable of Bette not to want to trot herself out in some tired old revival of a Jerry Herman musical?
At least with I'll Eat You Last she was doing a new untried play. And as it was a one person show she had no one to blame but herself if it didn't succeed.
- Come back to the cross burning, Paula Deen, Paula Deen.
Paula plays all 3 roles - Sandy Dennis will not be available. Cher still looks remarkably age appropriate but Paula will suffice.
- I hated Hedwig, too, r263.
- R236 Are you sure the fish smell came from the sandwiches?
- I believe a male will portray Helen Sinclair. Joe Jonas is too young, Nick Adams is too obscure. Who will they choose?
- Hedwig can work in a nicer theater as long as they 'trash it up'. Think Phantom meets CBGB. They need bad lighting, old amplifiers, electric cords running up the aisles (non functional, of course) and ear splitting feedback from a sound board located in the audience. The audience needs to see backstage so Hedwig and Yitzak can smoke dope and fight.
- I will never spend a single moment with those kids!!!!!
- Hated Hedwig too. The critics will rave and say how brave NPH is to take on the role. No one will come for $140 a ticket. Will be on TDF frequently.
- [quote]I believe a male will portray Helen Sinclair
Did someone call me?
- [quote]They need bad lighting, old amplifiers, electric cords running up the aisles (non functional, of course)
In other words, the Belasco.
- When she descends the stairs during "It's Today", she can just sit on the piano and the chorus boys can push her around.
Now, next number...
- Never been a huge Bette Middler fan, but every time she does press for this show she sounds like even more of a bitch.
- Then don't read it or listen to it, R280.
- I'm just tired of revivals in general.
Some things, yes they were good in their original productions for a variety of reasons: the actors, the production, the location, the zeitgeist of the time, what have you, but you can't capture lightening in a bottle. (Many forget Lansbury brought MAME back a second time and it died.)
Although it's true, judging from NYMF, MITF and the endless showcases and cabaret evenings of "up-and-comer" neverbeens (has the theater industry ever been so overloaded with these?) almost everything produced new is utter garbage, producers should continue to keep their eye on the future.
The level of crap being brought before producers currently, however, makes them turn in despair to hits of the past in hopes of turning some kind of profit.
Also, producing teams fill with WICKED-sized-dollars-in-their-eyes WallStreeters who have no taste, theater experience or knowledge doesn't help, either.
- Just came from a new play, this year's Tony Best Play winner, Vanya etc. Very funny, very sweet, and kind of wistful as well, along with a few lovely Chekhov subtext moments. Beautiful ensemble playing by all, including Sigourney, who has got a lot of general flak for what seems to me to be an exemplary piece of acting.
- Saw Golden Boy after the renovation at the Belasco- it is magnificent....walk around and take a look at the murals and all the detail- incredible theater.
The idiot Nederlanders who are leasing the Hellinger to the Church
- It's the Longacre for Hedwig, I would think.
Or maybe the Cort if they want to go smaller.
- NPH is not too old for H2$. Radcliffe, Criss, and Jonas were too young.
- I would like to eat Neil's ass. But I would not like to see him in HEDWIG.
- Here is a performance for the ages...
- We've found our Helen Sinclair at r288!
- Ewen McGregor, Phylicia Rashad or Kathleen Turner for Helen.
that'll sell tickets.
- Neil Patrick Harris as Hedwig strikes me as being like Tom Cruise as the vampire Lestat.
- I know this is a naive question but I ask it in earnest: why is putting together a tuneful and engaging musical so hard? I am not involved in theatre in any way except as an audience member so I really do not know the logistics. But it seems to me that with schools training so many people involved in music, acting, and writing that SOMEBODY should be able to put together a good musical. What is going on? This should be a golden age for musicals.
Rock music happened. The financial incentive isn't there any more.
- but WHERE are the Michael Arden nude frontals??? I want to see muffin top NOW@@
- I think Bette would be great in "Not I"
- They're nothing to write home about, and there's no "yellow" if that's what you're into.
- R293: apparently the routine $2M weekly grosses (or very close to it) are incentive for some people.
- [quote]Bette's concerts, though physically vigorous, allow her quite the latitude of ad libbing and cutting numbers randomly with each performance and without affecting any other performers sharing the stage. It's not like a classic Broadway revival under the microscopes of every Theatre Queen in town.
I think it would be hilarious if Bette did a musical, like MAME, and randomly decided to cut numbers at some performances...the char boards would explode!
ATC: OMFG! She cut "It's Today!" tonight!
- r294: I saw them years ago and they are a big pile of nothing. A pasty soft hairless body and small-average cut cock.
- R294-Apparently all that works for Andy.
- Sorry, R294, I was referring to the nude pix of Arden.
- For the Mame revival we kept pushing for Anderson Cooper as Gooch.
In keeping with newfolk in musicals how about DL sensation Don Lemon as Helen St. Clair?
Barbara Walters is Fantine, Les Miz 2014
- BTW, Jake's date at the Tonys was a little hottie, name of Graham Brown. Can't find out anything about him online.
- Slightly off-topic, but what else is new? I just listened for about the 50th time to Megan Hilty's rendition of Don't Forget Me (from the unlamented Smash experience), and she totally nails the song (which is pretty expert) and makes me want to see her again in almost anything. Too bad she's got a sitcom. I don't wish her ill, but I'd rather see her in something live in New York City!
- R302. I hear Barbara Walters is going to take over for Andrea Martin when Andrea goes on vacation. At least it's, more or less, age appropriate. And with Baba it's always more.
- "They're nothing to write home about, and there's no 'yellow' if that's what you're into."
Is this a reference to Michael Arden's piss fetish, r296?
- Gwen Verdon would periodically cut a number from Sweet Charity. And Yul Brynner in his latter King tours would often cut It's a Puzzlement.
Not unprecedented for stars to do so. But true, there was no Internet to explode over it.
- [quote] And Yul Brynner in his latter King tours would often cut It's a Puzzlement.
Because he didn't have the stamina to do that number most of the time by then.
- I am curious as to what numbers Gwen would cut as the show is carefully constructed to give the actress playing Charity down time.
- r309, I think she would cut "Where Am I Going?" (someone correct me if I'm wrong).
- There's a documentary airing tomorrow night on HBO in which Patti LuPone conducts a musical theater master class with 4 students. Has this been on already and have any of you seen it?
- Yes, r311. As I remember, three out of the four kids are pretty bad - Patti does a surprisingly good job of being nice and giving them "constructive criticism" rather than telling them to get out of the business because they don't have what it takes to make it, which I'm sure is what she was thinking. The fourth kid, a guy who thinks he's a real hotshot, was OK.
- You are correct, R310. It was the most vocally demanding number in the show for her, and Gwen was not at all strong vocally.
- Plus Streisand had released the number as a single, to make things worse for granny-voiced Gwen.
- Re: West End- Gavin Creel also originated Claude in Hair. And he played Bert in Mary Poppins. Also, didn't Lauren Kennedy play Nellie in South Pacific many years ago?
- The Michael Arden pics exist. I've seen them. In them, he's just cum all over himself.
- R292- A Christmas Story was a wonderful tuneful musical written by musical theater students.
- R309- I saw Verdon. She cut "Where Am I Going?" the night I was there.
- [quote]Also, didn't Lauren Kennedy play Nellie in South Pacific many years ago?
Yes in the West End. If I am remembering correctly, I don't believe the production was well received.
- [quote]Rock music happened. The financial incentive isn't there any more.
- [quote] But it seems to me that with schools training so many people involved in music, acting, and writing that SOMEBODY should be able to put together a good musical.
Maybe they need to be training good producers, people who really nurture a work and take risks and figure out a way to make them profitable (or at least not loose their shirt). I guess there's a few, but not enough. Everyone else is just shoveling money into things they think will get attention and the result is shitty theatre. Audiences who see shitty theatre don't return.
And don't get me started on the prices.
That production wasn't well received by all, but it was nominated for an Olivier for Best Production, and Philip Quast won the award for Best Actor.
I saw it, and I really enjoyed it. It was not a strong a production as the recent Lincoln Center revival, but it was very good. In fact, even though her initial reviews were not great, Lauren Kennedy was fantastic as Nellie. (I saw the production later in the run, right before the Oliviers.) I thought she captured the zest of Nellie much more than Kelli O'Hara did.
- [quote]Sorry, [R294], I was referring to the nude pix of Arden.
There are nude pictures of Eve Arden?
- Except audiences who see shitty theater DO return. That's why Broadway is in the mess it's in now.
Broadway theater no longer needs quality to sell.
- 324, Broadway never need quality to sell. There was a LIFE magazine article in the 1940s about how the hottest ticket in town was not the critics favorite "Oklahoma", but a Bobby Clark musical that is long forgotten.
- Except r325 we don't got no Oklahomas on Broadway any more. Just Bobby Clarks.
- Actually, I wish we *had* Bobby Clarks on Broadway. I don't think we get performers of that talent on Broadway. And part of the reason isn't lack of talent, it is the director's and writer's insistence on killing laughs at any cost.
Unfortunately, the closest we have to Bobby Clark on Broadway is Brooks Ashmanskas. And, that is "damning" without even a hint of "faint praise".
- Well R266, if Bette is playing Mame, who the fuck should they tailor the choreography to? You don't make any sense.
- R328, I think he meant as opposed to using the original choreography.
- Given Marvin Hamlisch's passing last year, I'm surprised that no one has tried to revive "They're Playing Our Song".
NPH would be perfect for that, instead of Hedwig. Anne Hathaway as the Carole Bayer Sager character, perhaps?
- [quote] NPH would be perfect for that, instead of Hedwig.
Because no one wants to see that tired old show and I don't want to do it.
- [quote]Except audiences who see shitty theater DO return. That's why Broadway is in the mess it's in now. Broadway theater no longer needs quality to sell.
Really? Oh do shut it. Go and look at The Village Voice archives of the seventies. Theater after theater dark, empty. A handful of shows running. Theatre today is alive, thriving and shows wait for a theater now.
- R331 the Nitwit, thinks "1776" is dated.
- Like the rest of society, American musical theatre has been slowly consumed by the giant maw of popular culture into one giant bolus of amateur banality.
- My new drag name is Discalulia Bolus.
- Bobby Clark for Mame!
- Plummer and Dourif are kind of touching in Williams's 2-CHARACTER PLAY, but the production feels kind of general, like somebody's Senior Thesis production at a liberal arts college.
- R337. Only "kind of touching"? That's the kiss of death in that steaming pile. Well, kind of.
- AS THE GIRLS GO!!
- Paula Deen would be great stuntcasting as Mother Burnside...if Mame tours to Alabama.
- How about Toni Collette for Mame?
- r340 Paula would be a fun Mama MOrton
- They need to make another film of Mame so that Goop can play Gloria Upson
- [quote]How about Toni Collette for Mame?
That might be the first and only good suggestion for the role.
- Rachel Griffiths as Vera!
The swimmer from Muriel's wedding as Beauregarde!
- [quote]How about Toni Collette for Mame?
Yeah, I concur. Can Judith Light sing? I'd pay to see her Vera.
- Well, Judith Light is a supporting actress now, so she'd probably accept the part.
- I don't really follow broadway threads, but would someone mind giving me an overview about what's going on (if anything is) with First Date?
- But how many tickets would Toni Collette sell? I agree she'd be a good choice, but if I were a producer or pushing group sales for that event, I'd be very, very wary.
- Rachel YORK as Vera!
- Rachel York as Helene Yorke!
- Lea DeLaria as Gooch!
Mickey Rooney as Ito!
- Mame and Vera are supposed to be contemporaries. Light is a full quarter century older than Collette.
- Ok, Kelly Ripa!
- Laura Benanti and Steven Pasquale divorcing
what's the story?
- Finally reading Arthur Laurents's book "Mainly On Directing" - he really belabors every point, as if he was the first person to come up with ideas he had for the Gypsy revival. And he manages to damn many with faint praise.
Also read Colored Lights - conversations with Kander and Ebb. They were like an old married couple! Their disdain for Janet Jackson would have Janbot exploding.
- Toni Collette would be fantastic as Mame. Or as Mama Rose in Gypsy. I think Mame and Mama Rose should be cast with a lead actress in her forties. Someone as old as LuPone or Merman is completely unbelievable as the mother of two young girls during the first act.
- R356, I have no intention of reading Colored Lights, so can you elaborate on the hate for Janet?
- Basically, instead of 'I Move On' by Kander and Ebb playing over the end credits of Chicago, Harvey Weinstein wanted Janet Jackson to write a new song. K+E were pissed at both this and the inclusion of a song by Anastacia on the album (which Harvey also wanted to squeeze in somewhere else). After digging their heels in, Weinstein offered a compromise- suggesting Kander and Ebb write with Janet! The whole section of the book is fun.
- I remember Toni Collette in Wild Party - she was terrific, and that's before she became "famous".
- If Toni plays Mame, then I MUST play Vera. A Connie and Carla reunion, don't you know? Although if it were up to me, I'd exchange the roles.
- Fran Drescher is MAME!
- [quote]Mame and Vera are supposed to be contemporaries. Light is a full quarter century older than Collette.
Two time Tony and two time Emmy Award winner Judith Light will ACT her contemporary. There are no close-ups on Broadway, Dear.
- Do you have Patti Issues?
- I had heard a rumor three weeks ago that Pasquale was screwing a chorus girl in Far From Heaven so this comes as no surprise to me.
- [quote]Fran Drescher is MAME!
Er, no. Mame is supposed to an upper-class WASP, not someone like Fran Drescher (or Babs Streisand or Bette Midler) whose Jewishness is an integral part of their persona.
The blonde actress who played Fran's rival in "The Nanny" could be a good Vera.
- Don Lemon is Mame
Thomas Roberts is Vera
Anderson Cooper is Gooch
Chris Cuomo is Mr. Babcock
Sam Champion is Sally Cato
Barbara Walters is Young Patrick
- Does Pasquale have a big dick?
- I am frankly shocked at the amazing box office numbers Kinky Boots is achieving each week. Is this really what the tourists want??
I guess the Best Musical Tony is not to be sneezed at after all.
- [quote]I am frankly shocked at the amazing box office numbers Kinky Boots is achieving each week. Is this really what the tourists want??
I guess the Best Musical Tony is not to be sneezed at after all.
I'd hate to see what you'd produce.
- [quote] I'd hate to see what you'd produce.
- Speaking of chorus girls...any more dish on Dylis Croman and Billy Ray Cyrus?
- I am so fucking over this Ben Rimalower person.
- Toni Collette became famous through Muriel's Wedding, long before The Wild Party.
- thats pronounced rim me lower
- Why don't we see Marian Seldes anymore?
- The Dalai Lama for Mame. Consider who could do Vera with him/her.
- [quote]Rachel York as Helene Yorke!
LOL! I love Helene Yorke! Worked with her in Wichita. Is she still on the WICKED tour?
- R376- dementia.
- Jane Lynch IS Vera!
Katie Finneran IS Mame!
Anthony Warlow IS Beauregard!
George Tatakei IS Ito!
- Who are they like to get for the Bryn Terfel-led Sweeney Todd. Please not Splasty again...
- I thought Helene York is playing the Jennifer Tilly role in Bullets Over Broadway.
- Well, I guess that link at r364 answers the question of whatever happened to Tyler Maynard and his big cock.
- There were no chorus girls in FAR FROM HEAVEN. He was probably fucking Nancy Anderson.
- Kristi Dawn IS Gooch!
- Another Sweeney Todd? Seriously?! I love the show, but come on. Is there nothing else to do?
- Alas the link at 364 no longer works, was horse cock Maynard in it?
- Link worked for me, I just clicked on it just now.
Yes, Tyler Maynard is there giving ample evidence of why he will never be more than a chorus boy. (And I don't care how big his dick is, he's not sexy at all)
Ben Rimalower - why???
- I'm with R386. Sweenney needs a rest. Dear Steve's most overexposed work, brilliant as it may be.
- Sweeney may be overexposed but that's because it's so much better than a lot of Steve's other crap. The show has to be good enough and well known enough to interest the New York Philharmonic in order to get it done on the Avery Fisher stage, and shown on on PBS. Let's face it, Anyone Can Whistle or Merrily won't put butts in seats, and people would rather die than sit through Passion again. And let's not even consider Pacific Overtures, where all the songs sound like "Western People Funny" from The King and I.
- [quote]324, Broadway never need quality to sell.
"Someday our babies
we'll take to "Abie's Irish Rose."
Let's hope they live to see
Same as it ever was, I guess
- I've been doing shows with Reid Watson, the blond guy from the PattiLu HBO Master Class special for ten years. He's a sweetheart.
- When is it official that The BMI Workshop is a massive failure?
- How long are you allowed to cart around your three unproduced musicals as "credits" and still be referred to in the theater press as "up-and-coming"?
- When will people be honest and just admit to themselves no one gives a shit about NYMF anymore?
- How does it feel to spend that boatload of money at Yale and all you have to show for it is "Triassic Parq: The Musical"?
- I saw Terrence McNally's MY SON DIED OF AIDS AND ALL I GOT WAS THIS LOUSY T-SHIRT re-tread of his 1990 TV show, whatever it was or is called, at the Bucks County Playhouse in no-longer-gay-just-tacky (if there's a difference between tacky and gay) New Hope, PA, and the play bugged me, it seemed to suggest that AIDS would never have happened if they had let us get married in 1972, but: I confess I liked Tyne Daly, whom I usually loathe, and Bobby Steggert had a touching little monologue that he delivered very touchingly.
- "I've been doing shows with Reid Watson, the blond guy from the PattiLu HBO Master Class special for ten years. He's a sweetheart."
I remember one guy as pretty namby pamby and awkward, and then another guy who had his act together and thought he was delivering intense sexiness to the camera. Which is this Reid Watson?
- [quote]I confess I liked Tyne Daly, whom I usually loathe
- If the Sweeney is broadcast, this will be the third such broadcast in a little over ten years.
I'd rather they did another Follies in Concert.
- [quote] Another Sweeney Todd? Seriously?! I love the show, but come on. Is there nothing else to do?
It's only a NY Phil concert Mary, not a revival.
- There are chorus girls in Far From Heaven? Dear oh dear.
- Me too R400 although I would prefer the fully staged production. There are a zillion bootlegs out there of the Bernadette Peters revival and the Los Angeles transfer when Victoria Clark took over for Peters. It would be nice to have a multi camera shot fully staged production. I don't understand why PBS passed on doing this when they had the chance. Was the FOLLIES revival ever considered for broadcast?
- It is odd that Sweeney and Comany have both been recorded a few times and none of the full Follies productions have been taped. Is The Widow Goldman to blame?
- They play flowers in Kelli's garden.
- what was the Can-Can workshop like? Anyone see it?
- [quote]It's only a NY Phil concert Mary, not a revival.
But honestly, the Phil's done it before. Someone's asleep at the wheel.
- I wonder if the Theatre du Chatelet do Follies, it might be more likely to be broadcast/filmed...
The recent Sunday production was not only filmed but offered as a free download. I guess there are none of the contract difficulties inherent in such a taping of a US production.
- Theatre Du Chatelet's next Sondheim is Into the Woods...already filmed twice.
The Menier Merrily should have been filmed
- Sondheim should be given rest in general. I don't know how much good things like our last two NYC mountings of ITW will do for the reputation of the post-Prince shows in particular.
Then again, what does he care for posterity, if he's making money now?
- [quote] Then again, what does he care for posterity, if he's making money now?
Oscar had to wait until he was dead before his family sold him out for Chevy commercials. Why shouldn't I make my money now?
- The Menier Merrily set looks like a community theatre set. It would not look well on film/tape.
- First Date starts performances tonight--and the load out will start....any guesses?
- Ashlee Simpson IS Roxie at the Hollywood Bowl!
- PBS has no money. If they get to film anything these days it is with major concessions from producers, actors, writers and all the unions.
- r399, Tyne Daly can be stridently one-note, now can't she? She has presence, and a kind of huffy warmth, but there aren't always a lot of notes in her concerto. Dismiss yourself.
- "Mothers and Sons" at Bucks County was excellent - play, production and cast - best McNally play in years
- Tynne Daly is brilliant. Not every role is for her. Arkadina she was not, but her Callas and her Rose were stellar. Some of the best theater I've ever seen, and I saw both Caldwell and Landsbury, respectively.
- "If the Sweeney is broadcast, this will be the third such broadcast in a little over ten years."
Is that true? The San Francisco Symphony version with pretty much the same cast as the NY Philharmonic version was telecast, and the Philharmonic one was recorded and issued on CD, but I don't think the Philharmonic version was telecast.
- "But honestly, the Phil's done it before. Someone's asleep at the wheel."
If memory serves correctly, Bryn Terfel was originally scheduled to play Sweeney in their original production BUT he was unable to do it rather late in the process due to illness.
He must have asked and they said OK.
- That's Tyne, apologies for the typo.
- r418, and now let's talk about how to spell "Lansbury."
McNally's MASTER CLASS is one of the worst plays ever written, and Zoe Caldwell gave a general performance that did nothing more than comment on Callas and tell us how great she - Callas and Caldwell and Caldwell-as-Callas - was. So to say Daly was better than Caldwell is to say Spam is better than dogfood.
Elaine Stritch should absolutely have won the Tony Award that year. Tony voters are idiots.
- [quote]McNally's MASTER CLASS is one of the worst plays ever written
Jesus, talk about drama queens (and, no doubt, a Callas queen). It wasn't that bad, certainly nothing to need to ever see again, and the performance itself was a star turn of a type you don't get much anymore (and granted, isn't necessary for a functioning theater). But please--there aren't enough Marys in the world for you up on your flimsy high-horse.
- Yah, get over yourself, r422.
One of the worst things about working and associating with theater people is when the make their own general opinions definitive FACTS.
I personally think Master Class is a masterpiece. That' my opinion. Another opinion is that you're a fucking loser.
- r423, I'm speaking to you from high atop my papier-mâché horse! "Papier-mâché" means "chewed paper," in French! And that's what MASTER CLASS must have been written on: bits of paper that McNally tore out of old gossip columns and chewed up and spit back onto the page, because: MASTER CLASS is just an anthology of every gossip item ever written about Callas. I'm not an opera queen, I loathe opera, I make an effort to avoid any mention of opera, and yet: even I knew as much about Callas as McNally's play did. It was a glorified press release. Any idiot with access to google and 6 hours on a Wednesday afternoon could have written it.
- r424, so what? You think MASTER CLASS is a masterpiece? So that means it is? Back up your judgement with examples, dear, or else your words have no value.
- MASTER CLASS is a far cry from a masterpiece, but it's a perfectly entertaining showcase for a good actress. Nothing wrong with that. Especially in this day and age where playwrights are allergic to the notion of "entertainment".
- whats the point of doing Chicago at the Hollywood Bowl-? the shows still playing on Bway and has played the LA area maybe a half a dozen times
also-even at its most designed still something of a minimalist show to fill out the stage of the HB
- Girls! Girls! You're both tedious as hell.
- Master Class IS a masterpiece and I've got 82,000 feet of film to prove it!
- BLOOOOOOOOOOW MEEEEEEEEEEEE!
- [quote]whats the point of doing Chicago at the Hollywood Bowl-? the shows still playing on Bway and has played the LA area maybe a half a dozen times
They do one musical every summer; only three performances. They usually get some relatively famous people. Last year was "The Producers" with Richard Kind, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Roger Bart, Gary Beach Rebecca Romijn (and Dane Cook, who surprisingly stole the show.) I think they have to look for a property that's got name recognition among the hoi polloi; it's a big venue to fill. Even with "The Producers," I was able to get half-price tickets last year.
- It's time to check my weekly nut.
- This woman thrilled me when I saw her in MAME on my 16th birthday, Winter Garden Theatre. Before that I only knew her as that scary mom from THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE.
kcguy, yes an elder and... I know... MARY!
- I love Sondheim but couldn't another composer or lyricist get more attention in terms of tributes, concert stagings, mini-seasons etc? Kander and Ebb, Cy Coleman or Kurt Weill for once?
- Fight! Fight!
- More from Laurents's Mainly on Directing; when Jay Presson Allen was writing the book for La Cage, her first instruction was "The decor is early faggot."
- Former fattie (and Broadway performer) Josh Young is sexing it up this week in St. Louis Muny's SOUTH PACIFIC. He plays Lt. Cable and even takes off his shirt. Laura Michelle Kelly and Ben Davis lead the cast.
Pictures over at playbill on line.
- I wish they'd get that gal out of the way so we could evaluate Former Fattie Josh's body!
- Fingers broken R438? LINK!
- sorry R440
Wes Tay-Tay's twitching ass and Tyler Maynard's massive cock
- Will Loretta Sayres be doing Bloody Mary until she's taken to a retirement home?
And the link at r434 reminds me what a sad, ignominious end John Lindsay came to.
- Joyce Young has quite a large - and droopy - left nipple in that pic.
And how the hell is Laura Michelle Kelly getting work at Muny? Did she marry an American?
- [quote]And how the hell is Laura Michelle Kelly getting work at Muny? Did she marry an American?
I believe she married a Brit.
- She was married to choreographer Nick Winston, also a Brit, but they are divorced.
- Anyone know why Laura and Steve are divorcing?
- How the hell did Rob Ashford become a director?
- Then why is Kelly working at Muny? She's a Brit!
- [quote]Anyone know why Laura and Steve are divorcing?
Laura has "moods"
- Sam Gold should be taken out and shot for his direction of "The Cradle will Rock." That is all...
- [quote] Then why is Kelly working at Muny? She's a Brit!
Perhaps she has an American Equity card? Or they were able to get her under a guest artist contract?
- Apparently Laura Michelle Kelly also appeared at the Muny last year in "King & I."
- Laura has "moods" and Steve has "flings".
- Anyone see FIRST DATE yet?
- Steve will fuck anything that moves, male or female.
- Please post nudie pictures of Michael Arden so I can nut.
- really r455? I move. Where do I apply?
- Laura also appeared in Fiddler and Mary Poppins for long extended periods on Broadway... I assume she has an American equity card.. Gavin Lee, her original Poppins co star, stayed with the Broadway company a long time.
I saw her in both Poppins (London) and last summer's Muny THE KING AND I. She was quite good. driving over to see SOUTH PACIFIC at the Muny on Saturday. Looking forward to it! Even if it is 110 in the shade. ;)
- Any updates on when or where Sondheim's newest musical will be staged? He mentioned taking a break from it after breaking his wrist last year.
- I seriously doubt Sondheim will ever get another musical ready for production - I don't think he has it in him any more.
- Any word on FIRST DATE?
- Laura Michelle Kelly did Poppins on Broadway? I know she did Fiddler - so-so, but assumed that was a one-off, an exchange because we owed the Brits a contract (she certainly wasn't a star).
I saw her in London in Poppins, and she was awful. I just don't get her.
- Laura Michelle Kelly has my fucking career, and I want it back!
- R462- Yes, she came after Ashley Brown and maybe the a second replacement?? She stayed with it about 9 months.. maybe longer.
- All right. Prime Time for Wednesday day is over. Let's stop worrying about Laura Michelle Kelly's big thighs for a while and figure out what's going on with Jonny Orsini of The Nance. Is he gay, is he occupied? He's very cute and by the time the evening is over you realize that he's on the road to what could be a very good career.
- Ask again, r461. Ask again.
- R 460-All Sondheim has in him these days is premium vodka.
- What R467 said.. he's a drunk.
- [quote]All Sondheim has in him these days is premium vodka.
Considering how few tickets his shows actually sell, I'm surprised he can afford the top shelf stuff.
- OMG Has anyone seen the photos of Darren Criss i the new Kirstin Wiig often postponed movie? He has more eye makeup than Johnny Weir and Adam Lambert combined. Girl!!!!
- Steven apparently cheated on Laura with his upcoming "Bridges of Madison County" co-star Elena Shadow
- For R461:
- "He's very cute and by the time the evening is over you realize that he's on the road to what could be a very good career."
Except that he's unremarkable in an unremarkable part in an unremarkable, half-baked play.
- Wasn't Laura Michele Kelly part of that Irish Catholic trio who played Tevye's daughters in the last revival of Fiddler on the Roof?
Kelly, Sally Murphy and...who was the 3rd lass?
- [quote][R227]: Who are all these non-star American actors getting to originate roles on the London stage??
Jefferson Mays is taking A Gentleman's Guide... to London.
- Hate to say it, but The Cradle Will Rock did not get going until Raul and his bisexual cock showed up.
And Divine Joy Randolph (or how ever you spell her name) got to belt the one hit song.
- Oh, and Michael Park shows off his arms and most of his chest.
- The third sister was Italian Catholic.
- r478 and she was AWFUL .
- What do you motherfuckers expect from Sondheim? Dude is 82 years old. Name a Bway composer who was still producing new shows at age 82.
Plus: none of you took those crazy posters to task for suggesting that MASTER CLASS was a masterpiece. And if you all are willing to let that kind of judgement stand, you are clearly in no position to judge anything.
Play was a PIECE of certified SHIT.
- How old was Irving Berlin when he wrote his last produced show?
- Was there anyone in that Fiddler revival that was actually Jewish? It sure lacked humor and Yiddishkeit. The British director didn't have a clue. Is Randy Graff Jewish?- If she is, she was horrible. It only ran cause it is Fiddler.
Rosie- another Irish Catholic who loves Broadway but can't sing
- Lea Michele played Sphincter or Bilke and we all know she's full Jew!
- r481: Irving Berlin was 74 when his last show, MR. PRESIDENT opened in 1962.
- CRADLE WILL ROCK is a spectacular misfire by boy wonder Sam Gold. Keep this fucker away from musicals, he has no understanding of them. And his casting choices, with 2 exceptions, are horrendous. Go away for a spell, Sam, and get your shit together.
- I agree CRADLE WILL ROCK sucked donkey balls, r485, but has that show ever been good? This is a sincere question - I've never seen it before tonight, and I hope to God I never do again. I was bored out of my mind with those stupid two-dimensional types/caricatures and the clichéd two-dimensional message.
- Judy Kuhn was underused. Any production that can claim that is a flop in my book.
- I'd rather have seen Judy Kuhn as the prostitute, age and all. Anika Noni Rose has finally pushed me over the edge with one too many bland-to-bad performances. I thought she was as magical in CAROLINE OR CHANGE as everybody else, and I had a tremendous amount of goodwill toward her for many years for that, but I'm just tired of seeing her and being disappointed. The Philharmonic COMPANY, the Public's PIRATES OF PENZANCE gala, CRADLE WILL ROCK - every time I see her these days she's bad, and I just feel done with her.
- forever tango really was very good - superb dancing
- R488, Anika Noni Rose was magnificent in Imitation of Life.
- And don't forget the Encores PURLIE, r488, a particularly disappointing "meh."
- And her Maggie the Cat was good.
- Richard Rodgers was 77 when I REMEMBER MAMA opened.
Cole Porter was 67 when ALADDIN was on TV.
Irving Berlin was 74 when MR. PRESIDENT opened.
Jerry Herman, whose birthday by the way was yesterday, July 10, is 1 year younger than Sondheim, and what was Herman's last new show? LA CAGE?
John Kander was 83 when THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS opened (though surely he wrote it before 2004, when Fred Ebb died at age 76). And then there was THE LANDING, his 3 one-acts, a couple years ago.
Richard Adler was 55 when MUSIC IS opened. Jerry Ross died at 29.
Jerome Kern died at 60. Sigmund Romberg died at 63. Oscar Hammerstein was 64. Rudolf Friml was 94! When was his last show, 1928? When he was like 49?
Kurt Weill died at age 50. Bob Merrill was 77.
Jule Styne was 88 when he died in 1994, and THE RED SHOES was 1993! Anybody see it?
And so forth. Trends suggest that Sondheim's new-musical-producing days are past. And why shouldn't they be? I think he's done his job.
As for the liquor, dude was always an addict and sexual compulsive. No shame, if you ask me, and no surprise. Some of you motherfuckers are stuffing ball gags into your tricks' mouths and leaving the dudes tied to the bedstead when you go downstairs to host a dinner party - maybe. But can you then sit down at the piano and write SWEENEY TODD? May she who is without sin be the first to. . .
- I remember the film version of "Cradle Will Rock" was rather nice.
- Why can't you queens keep up?
You think you're so witty and smart, but if a post takes a second longer to read than the time it takes to slip an imitation art deco phallus up your collapsing asshole, you can't be bothered with it.
What's your problem? Low IQ? Too many dirty Shirley Temples?
- Fraidy cats took down my snarky post!
On Datalounge, you can call women "cunts," but if you call a gay man anything but a beautiful sensitive suffering fabulosity, you get censored!
- Oh, wait, nevermind!
- Why is no one talking about Steve Kazee's career suicide at 54 Below the other night? Good thing he's moving to LA, cause he's not going to be working in NY.
- what happened?
- Agree that CRADLE was a pretentious bore. The formal dress concept was a huge mistake as was the dismantling of the set by (gasp!). . . union members!
Glad I saw it as an historic document, but (at least here) it doesn't work as theater.
Can't wait to hear what Isherwood will say.
- Details please on Kazee's career suicide, r498!
- Are most of the shows at 54 Below just one night stands? Is that why they are so rarely reviewed by Stephen Holden or whoever in the NY Times?
- Cradle was not my cup of tea musically- I hate that tune free recitative shit. And I didn't understand most of the choices to portray the characters- (vaudeville, cross dressing). But I couldn't hate it because the cast was so talented and committed. It takes a true musician to sing that music. And the kid was incredible as was the orchestra. Once again, the fat black woman gets the 11 o'clock show stopping number. Thank God it was only 90 minutes.
- "Master Class" is a slightly more respectful and accurate depiction of Maria Callas than Charles Ludlam's "Galas," but only slightly, and as with "Galas" the starring role is best played by a man in drag.
- I see it tomorrow so glad to hear it is 90 minutes though, lol.
- Even at 90 minutes, I kept checking my watch.
Agree about the cast commitment and the orchestra.
- Ludlum's Galas was an amazing evening -- he was a brilliant writer, satirist (with a real sense of character, psychology and history) and a fabulous actor. He did not do "drag"; he acted women fully with tremendous flair and didn't send them up -- though he was highly theatrical and made big choices (it was called Theater of the Ridiculous for a reason).
He gets the craziness, fearless grandiosity of Callas (the scene with the Pope was hysterical -- based on an actual meeting when His Holiness, Pius XLL tried to get her to withdraw a suit against his nephew for claiming falsely that she had used the nephew's pasta to lose weight.)
He also understands her loneliness, what it's like to be that talented and dedicated only to find out that it doesn't gain you friends, let alone love. The suicide scene was devastating and played with conviction. (Callas didn't commit suicide but was desperately alone at the end except for her two servants, Ludlum's lover Everett Quinten played the female, Ludlum naming her Lina Bruna Rasa was an operatic in joke).
McNally is just boulevard shit, phony baloney from the start and it hides a genuine misogyny and dislike of what Callas' achieved (though it masquerades as being a fan's homage). Whatever she was like privately, at the actual "Master Classes" (which I saw) she was generous, kind and tried to be helpful, not a clown like bitch, confiding personal details to strangers.
Though Ludlum was flamboyant and abandoned, as was typical of his style, there was an uncompromising honesty and insight under the jokes. His writing was stunning; he was the great American theater artist of that generation (Mamet? Wasserstein?), killed by AIDS just as he was starting to become more widely known.
- [quote]Details please on Kazee's career suicide, [R498]!
Yeah whaaaaaaaaat happened?
- I saw the Acting Company production with Patti Lupone. I liked it. I would have been in my teens; so, I am not sure how I would react to it today. There are portions of it on Youtube. I think Patti's best work was with the Acting Company.
- r507--thanks for that, though it makes me once again sad that I came of age just a shade late for Ludlum. I caught a glimpse, I think, in the revival of Der Ring, and in Everett Quinton's A Tale of Two Cities. Sigh.
- Had a double header yesterday.
Matinee of Choir Boy @ City Center. SEE. IT. NOW.
Evening at Second Stage's Nobody Loves You. Crap. Steer clear.
- "Purlie" is a crap show to begin with.
- Really R511 - I was wondering about that new SECOND STAGE Musical
NOBODY LOVES YOU
- Culture Vulture on Kazee at 54 Below:
Handsome and talented Steve Kazee’s warm, expressive voice made him a star on Broadway and won him the Tony Award for Once, so I was excited to see his cabaret act at 54 Below. [...] performed a set of all original material, which was okay but not especially memorable. He made it a point to tell the audience right away he wouldn’t be singing any songs from Once, and later he mentioned that any women he encountered on OK Cupid who mentioned seeing him in the show would instantly be blocked – which I thought was weirdly hostile. There is something strangely uneasy about his personality – he seemed surprisingly insecure, couldn’t believe how quiet and attentive the audience was, kept apologizing for using swear words, fretted about not having enough material to fill an hour-long show, and floated several negative comments he imagined audience members might be thinking, which came off as defensive, paranoid, not very attractive. Except for a tune about his mother (who died shortly after Once opened on Broadway), much of his material consisted of romantic break-up numbers or “Fuck you” songs, and a picture of him started to form as a bitter, arrogant dick. I’d prefer to believe that he was just very very nervous, and when I went online to check out his website I noted that he had to leave Once prematurely because of an injury to his vocal cords, which would make any rising star pretty unhappy, I should think.
- I saw Once in London. They should bring over the Croatian actress who plays the female lead. She has charisma to burn.
- So an awkward cabaret act with bad original material is "career suicide"? I was hoping for something far more juicy after r498's melodramatic build-up.
- "Steven apparently cheated on Laura with his upcoming BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY co-star Elena Shadow."
Elena Shaddow [note correct spelling] did that show with Pasquale in Williamstown, but on Broadway, Kelli O'Hara will be playing the part. O'Hara was supposed to do it at Williamstown but she had to bow out because she was pregnant.
On another note, I'm glad some people here abhor MASTER CLASS as much as I do. Incredible how some people actually consider that piece of shit a well-written, respectful play about a great artist, when it's the opposite.
- So, how 'bout that FIRST DATE?
- [quote]So an awkward cabaret act with bad original material is "career suicide"? I was hoping for something far more juicy after [R498]'s melodramatic build-up.
Yeah, I was waiting for something like he peed in someone's drink from the stage.
- Anika Noni Rose was excellent on The Good Wife as a goodie-goodie self-righteous character. Is she uptight IRL?
- Kazee has demons. Poor thing. He was wretched in 110 IN THE SHADE. And both times I saw ONCE, he was absent.
- Thanks R493 AKA Ken Mandelbaum. We were all wondering what had happened to you. We were worried that your pile of bootleg videos and variant recordings of Candide had fallen over and crushed you.
- Does CHOIR BOY have full frontal nudity? I thought early in previews somebody on here said that it did, but since then I haven't seen it mentioned in any reviews or chat board posts - did they take it out during previews?
- Has anyone else had the experience of automatically losing respect for someone when they say they think THE NANCE is a good play?
- [quote]Has anyone else had the experience of automatically losing respect for someone when they say they think THE NANCE is a good play?
No, but I think most of us have had the experience of being bored by people who can't imagine the world not sharing their taste.
- R523, I saw the second preview, and there was lots of dick and ass. Don't know if was changed after that, though.
- In spite of feelings about the play....for those who saw Tyne Daly in Master Class, how was she?
I love her but just can't imagine her playing Callas or even approaching looking like her.
- I'm confused - did Tyne Daly show cock and ass?
- yup. Tyne did in "Take Me Out"
- [quote]the hoi polloi[/quote]
"The" is part of the definition of hoi polloi so this is actually redundant.
Greek Grammar Nazi
I don't happen to like the play - I think it's McNally's drag version of Callas but I thought Tyne brought a great humanity to it - much more so than Caldwell. The last gesture in the script was tremendously moving to me. (I don't want to spoil it for those who have never seen the play.) She was earthy and very, very funny. She brought a great dignity to the long, embarrassing remembrances and I felt the tragedy of a woman who was greatly admired but rarely ever loved.
I saw Zoe, Patti and Tyne in MASTER CLASS.
There always seemed to remain a sort of fishwife vulgarity with Callas-look for a famous clip of her pursued by paparazzi in an airport. When jostled, the Diva demeanor cracks and she gets very testy and the affected accent becomes pure Queens. It is actually very funny to see how disingenuous she is fielding questions and at the same time feeding them tidbits of information.I've always thought that clip probably best gives one a glimpse as to what the woman behind the myth was probably really like. Remember Callas recreated herself herself to become the toast of Cafe Society and the International set. She started out a fat, myopic Greek from NY.
That was the earthy quality lacking with Caldwell and what LuPone and Tyne brought to the role. They were both also very funny. And as R532 said, both brought a sense of humanity to the part. Caldwell seemed to be
giving a virtuoso performance. I thought the other two inhabited the "legend" more. Patti flirted a lot with the auditioning tenor, seemed bemused by his arrogance and she was the only one who really nailed being really moved by the audition and honestly that is the only performance I retain that kind of specific memory of.Patti did seem to chew the projections (there was no scenery to speak of) during those monologues in a way the other two didn't.
Patti most resembled Callas onstage but Tyne had great makeup and wig. Also she is not really that large of a woman or at least wasn't large when I saw her, she carries herself really well, is very much a stage actress, so she just came off as larger than life and probably the most human and earthbound of the three.
- What do we think of Barrett Foa's pencil moustache for the title role of Connecticut Repertory Theatre's MUSIC MAN? Although I generally don't like moustaches, I have to say I think this looks sort of handsome on him.
- The moustache looks great on Barrett. It ages him a little and makes him look more manly.
Is he done with that TV series? He needs to be on Broadway not in summer stock in CT..
- [quote] Is he done with that TV series? He needs to be on Broadway not in summer stock in CT
Nope. They'll be back in production shortly.
- [quote] I was waiting for something like he peed in someone's drink from the stage.
Now you have my attention.
- LOL r537
- I saw Patti LuPone's gypsy run-through of Master Class, and I loved it. I have yet to see her give a performance as good again. I thought the play was great fun, and since I knew almost nothing of Callas, I learned a lot. McNally can often be cringeworthy, but here I enjoyed his skill. It's a painless evening in the hands of any half-decent actress.
[quote] The Cradle Will Rock
Who the fuck thinks anybody wants to sit through this turd of a show ever again? It's the type of show good only for school field trips where they want to instill a permanent hatred of the theater into the kids!
- Did anyone see Dixie Carter in Master Class?
- I saw the second act of Dixie. She was pretty good.
- re r521. Possibly he's a closet case??
- What's Steve Kazee's issue? Is he a closet case or just crazy or both? All I ever hear about him is that he doesn't show up to perform when people pay for him to perform.
- NYMF is over right? What changed, it was so good the first few years and now it just seems like an epic waste of time.
- Kazee's mother died right at the start of the "Once" run. It seemed to throw him off balance. Don't think he ever got a chance to properly grieve.
- What's properly grieve? Is there a handbook? He left the show to be with her when she died and then he had a huge vocal rest period where he didn't work.
- You heard it here first. A new musical called "You Just ain't Whistling Dixie" a musical drama starring Patti Lupone as an aging southern woman who remembers her life as a souhern belle during the ruins of the civil war.
Norm Lewis is in talks to play a younger black man, Patti's character has an affair with while her home burns down.
It happens during the first act finale showstopper "Sweet Jesus"
- [quote]What's properly grieve? Is there a handbook?
There are many. Kubler-Ross ring a bell?
- Shocking that anyone would continue to defend MASTER CLASS. It's a terrible piece of gossipy misogynist dreck that attracts actors who love to indicate.
- So, sensitivity is not your thing, R546? Who's to say how long it takes to get over the death of your parents? Love to have you as my boss.
- And he won the Tony!
- Shocking that anyone would rant on and on about their opinion of MASTER CLASS, making proclamations about it as if their opinion is the only one that counts.
- Is anyone else surprised that the reviews of "Cradle Will Rock" are so overwhelmingly positive?
- I've never won a Tony, but I've won lots of Tonys (if ya know what I mean). I've been waiting to post, since no one's posted about me.
- Have you ever been nominated, Max?
- I wonder how Bobby Steggert dealt with diva Ms. Daly in the McNally play last month.
- Bobby Steggert was really good in the McNally play last month.
Why do are all you queers so in love with the idea that every powerful woman is a "diva" to be heckled and mocked?
You all need therapy, stat.
"do are" = are
sorry for the typo
- What musical is this song from?
- For R559
- r559, "Moanin' Low" was written by Ralph Rainger (words) and Howard Dietz (music) and was introduced by Libby Holman in the 1929 revue, THE LITTLE SHOW.
- I thought Moanin' Low was written by Rupert Holmes?
- You only think that, R562, because it was on Babs' Lazy Afternoon album
which had other songs written by Holmes.
- R540, I did! 4th of July matinee (I thnk), 1997. I would later see Faye Dunaway (on tour, when I lived in SF) and Rita Moreno (special production at Berkeley Rep; she moved to Berkeley a number of years ago.)
Of the three: I by FAR preferred Dixie Carter! Faye Dunaway was pretty good; "wanted to be liked", I think; Rita Moreno I thought would be the best, being "Latin"; she was quite good BUT took the whole first act to ramp up to performance level IMHO (or maybe it was a deliberate slow build.)
Back to Dixie, sorry: she was great! tough , uncompromising; balls-out; not "actressy" in the least; even the curtain call was very serious.
Great actress, RIP.
- What do you mean, "being Latin?"
Callas was Greek American!
Do you not know the difference between Spain and Greece?
- Μαρία Κάλλας
Rosa Dolores Alverío
r564, do you sense a difference?
- Was Bobby Steggert naked in the play?
- I'm preparing for my own Master Class production at the Secaucus Rotary Hall...please come.
- Eric Altemus in Pippin - discuss.
- "Shocking that anyone would rant on and on about their opinion of MASTER CLASS, making proclamations about it as if their opinion is the only one that counts."
What, can you not tolerate a dissenting opinion? Maybe, just maybe, the poster is erudite and informed, unlike some.
"When is it official that The BMI Workshop is a massive failure?"
When the students realize that all those years spent in the solipsistic environment of a classroom left them unprepared to function in the real-life, cooperative world of the theatre.
No, I don't lose respect for NANCE fans if they like it, I just don't think they're very discerning. Then again, Broadway today is one big sandbox for the undiscerning, so no surprises there.
On another front, I saw Natasha, Pierre, etc, and liked it a lot (the pierogis and miniscule bellini/mimosa/screwdriver or whatever it was helped). Well-performed and beautifully staged (much better than Murder Ballad--not surprised the latter closed). But the score--meh. Yes, it works well at establishing atmosphere (the sexy ostinato bass line during the Anatole-Natasha seduction at the ball was especially effective) but the rest of the meandering recitatives, with their unstructured lyrics and monotonous music, were dreary. No self-respecting, aristocratic Muscovite would have been caught dead singing such plebian dirges.
- R553 - I just came from THE CRADLE WILL ROCK and I rather liked it and would have LOVED it had the director not re-cast it as a drag show. Some of the performances were BEYOND hammy and self-indulgent.
No one was in Raul Esparza's league. Pure ham.
Anika was fabulous tonight.
- R533's post was insightful and we need more posts like his.
- May I just add my voice to the anti-NANCE-y voices?
Jesus holy god what a failure of a play.
May I admit that I also hated the set? The set wagged the dog! And the dog was the play. And the first scene, the "cruising" scene in the old 3rd Ave Automat, was awkwardly staged and badly played.
In what world - particularly 1933! or whenever! - would that cute hot straight guy who was at least half Nathan Lane's age have EVER fallen in love with Nathan Lane? In what world, in what 1930s world, would a heterosexually married straight guy fall in love with Nathan Lane and be all, "I'm not remotely ashamed of my love! I love my love! I'll hold your hand in front of everyone! Love is love! People are people! I would never call myself a 'queer,' I'd just call myself a man in love!"
It was bullshit.
Lots of other things about the play were also bullshit, but it's bedtime. Kisses all around.
- 553, 571
I saw it tonight too.
The director had a few too many gimmicks to "fix" the show.
It didn't need them. The drugstore scene was perfect played as is.
Nobody came to see his vision, they came to see the legend or maybe the movie of the legend. I never saw it live before so all I know are the recordings.
To my taste Anika had too good a voice to play the moll. Not worn out.
However they did the show and we got to see it. I enjoyed it.
Maybe the positive reviews were just because it was a fair try of a rare show.
- [quote]To my taste Anika had too good a voice to play the moll
Excuse me?? And I suppose mine was "just right"?
- Is Audra old enough to play Callas in Master Class now?
- Audra isn't right for the part in Master Class. That needs a real big personality.
- Oh Tyne, give it a rest. You've been imitating Robert Preston as Harold Hill for almost 30 years now with your bulldozing style of "acting". Your turn in Gypsy was even worse than the shrieking Italian fishwife interpretation of Patty Lapone.
- R578 = Audra, green with envy!
- I have to admit I have never seen a Ludlam play in performance, and outside of "The Big Easy" I've never seen him perform, so obviously you have the advantage over me in having seen his intentions in action. I'm just going on the playscript here, but although I agree that Galas (unlike McNally's Hollywood Babylon version of Callas) has a lot more authenticity he's essentially kidding her, however affectionately (e.g., her death scene is a parody of Cio-Cio San's.) At least Charles had the good taste to call his heroine Galas rather than encouraging the audience to think she's the real Callas.
- "The Nance" is a parable about gay marriage, so it's a very relevant play and can be excused for its narrative simplicity, since topicality rather than innovation is what it's all about. But like "Brokeback Mountain" it's pretty slashy. It's a romance and that irritates people who want authenticity.
- [quote]"The Nance" is a parable about gay marriage, so it's a very relevant play and can be excused for its narrative simplicity, since topicality rather than innovation is what it's all about. But like "Brokeback Mountain" it's pretty slashy. It's a romance and that irritates people who want authenticity.
I know we're talking about two different mediums here, but I never questioned the believability of Brokeback or that relationship. The Nance, on the other hand, just felt like polemic wrapped in schmaltz.
There's a good, REALISTIC story to be written about gay romance in that period, which would, in turn, be even more relevant to our times and current struggles. But sadly, the Nance is to gay acceptance what Memphis was to race relations: a flattened-out and simplistic take on extremely complicated, emotionally rich subject matter.
- hAving the kid play the cop was the biggest directorial mistake. That and letting Martin and Stram ham it up in 2 different sections. Reign them already.
- I haven't see The Nance but I echo R582's idea that there are some wonderful plays and stories that could be fashioned out of romances in that time period. Many relationships existed for years before Stonewall.
- The clips from CRADLE looked terrible. Rose looked lost.
Also what was the deal with the drag Sister-Mister?
Also surprised at the reviews.
- r569 He's cute but kinda MEH as Louis. I hear he has gone on as PIPPIN but I dunno how I feel about that porn stache.
Ooh ooh thank you mistress patti!
Do it again, please.
I deserve to be punished.
- I saw Eric Altemus as Pippin and he brought warmth and humor to what outside out of Andrea Martin is a cold first act. He had chemistry with Rachel Bay Jones in the second act. He sings it better than Matthew and he is far sexier.
R573, if you thought Orsini's character in The Nance was straight then you weren't paying attention.
- r588 So did he have a porn stache as PIPPIN? Or is it fake and he puts in on as Louis?
- Porn 'stache was his until he had to go on as Pippin, then it was fake going forward, as you can't glue on a fake over stubble/start of new one.
- By all, means, let's have Audra play a 60-ish white Greek opera diva who has no voice left and doesn't sing a note in the play.
- Best "Moanin' Low": Claire Trevor in "Key Largo." Won her the Oscar.
- Is Altemus of the jomo sex?
- I'm hoping that the genius creator of new Theatre Gossip threads is beginning his/her magic with upcoming # 116 (which could be needed within minutes). He/she steered the wayward DL girls pretty well with # 115 (except for the endless tedium that Master Class always provokes), so here's hoping we respond well to the new one.
- But all you doubters of NANCE doubters, here's the thing:
It was impossible to believe - because of the writing, and because of the actors - that Nathan Lane and that guy would ever be boyfriends.
If you want to read the thing as "romance" or "metaphor" or "historical melodrama": doesn't matter.
No way to believe those two guys had ever even met.
As for the play asking us to believe that a hot 25-year-old with a generically hot gym body who had left his wife just yesterday and apparently had no idea that anyone had ever discriminated - legally, medically, socially - against homosexuals. . . That such a guy existed, ever, and that he would fall immediately into Nathan Lane's arms and want to marry him forever and be his happy little housewife who just adored everything he did and had no personal ego needs whatsoever. . .
It's a bullshit fantasy. An offensive lie, if you ask me. It's a lie that flatters Lane, of course; and it's a lie that disrespects the history of homosexual men in the US over the past hundred years, because it pretends that it actually would have been entirely possible at any point for some guy who was straight on Tuesday to decide on Friday that he could love a man and everything would be hunky dory.
Sure, gay relationships have always existed. Sure, plenty of people found communities in which they could be "married" without being harassed by their immediate circle.
But to go back and do a revisionist history that erases the profound psychological damage that homophobia does to people. . .
I mean it was 1933. And John Lee Beatty's sets - particularly the Automat - were so specific and seemingly historically accurate and entirely realist - the first set you see kind of just IS that Automat, and the production says to you: "We are now back in the early 30s in NYC and we are going to show you what really happened."
And 1933 was when Hitler rose to power and he was just about to start rounding up homosexuals and torturing them.
And 1933 was only 40 years after Oscar Wilde was tried and condemned and jailed and basically left to die because he was a fag.
Wilde's trial drove thousands of homosexuals around the globe back into the closet. Ask Henry James about that.
And 1933 was four years into the Depression, which destroyed the Harlem Renaissance, and basically wrecked the uptown/downtown culture that had emerged during the '20s - a culture that had allowed for a lot of gayness and gender-bending stuff to sneak out into the open. Mae West, etc. Gladys Bentley. And so forth. By the early 30s, it was running back into the shadows.
THE NANCE told us it was realist/historical, which was bullshit. It told us that a straight guy in that period could just decide to love, love, love, openly and uncomplicatedly love, a man. All of which made Nathan Lane's character bear ALL the burden of self-loathing and anxiety and dread, etc.
- r588, lover boy, I was paying close attention.
The dude read as straight. And he read as a guy who'd never fuck Nathan Lane.
- Erik's a sweetie.
- Let's finish this thing off.
- And on to #116!
- Caroline O'Connor in Master Class!
- Buh bye now!