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Sunday, April 30, 2006

Out Of The Ashes Of Triumph, Coconut Grove Director Struggles To Survive Arnold Mittelman has run Florida's Cocnut Grove Playhouse for 21 years. "On April 10, South Florida's theater community paid homage to the 61-year-old stage veteran. Standing tall in the spotlight at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts, Mittelman, his blue eyes sparkling, accepted the George Abbott Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Arts. By the next morning, though, a very different kind of spotlight began to shine on Mittelman amid revelations that the landmark theater he has run with a single-minded determination is on the brink of ruin." Miami Herald 04/30/06

Will Smoking On A British Stage Be The New Nudity? The English ban on smoking could after plays onstage. "For example, do almost all Ibsen's male characters smoke because it is central to the argument of the drama or because Ibsen was a social realist and, at the time, being in a room after dinner was like walking alongside a steam train? Under the Finch rules, smoking might become for future generations of actors equivalent to nudity in the past, with respectful reference to performers who were 'prepared to light up' but only 'if the part absolutely demanded it'." The Guardian (UK) 04/28/06

Broadway On TV... (Tradition Revived?) "Musical theater was once a staple of television. Throughout the 1950s and '60s, 'The Ed Sullivan Show' regularly featured performances from the latest Broadway shows, allowing people who had little prospect of seeing the productions to get at least a taste of them. In the mid-'50s, when Mary Martin brought "Peter Pan" to NBC, it was a national event -- one that the network repeated regularly for years. Televised productions of such musicals as "Wonderful Town," "Annie Get Your Gun," "One Touch of Venus," "Brigadoon" and "Kiss Me, Kate," among others, also were presented during that era. Where did it all go?" Washington Post 04/30/06

Friday, April 28, 2006

Back To The 80s - The Wedding Singer "This transformation of a Hollywood movie into a Broadway musical, a trend that appears as irreversible as global warming, is an example of recycled recycling, or second-hand nostalgia." The New York Times 04/28/06

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Actress Quits Broadway Over Baldwin Actress Jan Maxwell quit the Broadway production of "Entertaining Mr. Sloane," complaining about actor Alec Baldwin. In the e-mail, Maxwell said Baldwin put his fist through a wall and was "throwing things around with all of us cowering," and Maxwell accused Baldwin of giving the Roundabout an ultimatum: refusing to go on with her. Backstage 04/27/06

UK Theatres Seek Smoking Ban Exemption Theatres in the UK are looking for onstage exemption to a general smoking ban. "Exemptions are now being considered where smoking is integral to the plot. The government is considering providing a specific exemption from smoke-free legislation to ensure that smoking can take place on stage during live theatrical performances, or during film and television recording." BBC 04/27/06

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

British Agents Cheating Their Clients Theatrical agents in the UK are being accused of charging aspiring actors thousands of pounds in fees in return for securing work that never materializes. "New laws from April 2004 made it illegal to charge up-front registration fees, although did allow agencies to charge a 'reasonable' sum to include someone in a publication or directory. But [a report in a UK trade magazine] made clear that the majority of performers were unaware of the new laws from the Department of Trade and Industry. Moreover, the rules were being flagrantly breached by many agents." The Independent (UK) 04/27/06

Ten Years On, Rent Still Paying Nicely For a decade now, Rent has been a Broadway producer's dream - a cult hit beloved by critics that outgrows its initial status to become a bona fide phenomenon, with a movie adaptation and everything. (Plenty of people despise the show, too, and as anyone in PR will tell you, that kind of animosity only makes your fan base more devoted.) Now, the original cast has reassembled for a semistaged tenth anniversary performance that raised $2 million for AIDS care and New York theatre groups, and while all the hoopla may have been more than creator Jonathan Larson could have imagined (he died shortly before the show opened,) it seems a fitting tribute to one of Broadway's truly original thinkers. The New York Times 04/26/06

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Rachel Corrie Gets A Reading In Toronto "The script of My Name is Rachel Corrie, a controversial play about the 23-year-old American activist who died in Gaza during a political demonstration in 2003, received a private reading without incident at Hart House on the University of Toronto campus Sunday night... While the play ran successfully in London for many months, a proposed production at the New York Theatre Workshop was cancelled shortly before its opening, because of fears that it would exacerbate 'an edgy situation' within the Jewish community. This cancellation sparked a worldwide controversy, with heated voices being raised on both sides. In light of that reaction, the Toronto organizers decided to make Sunday night's reading by invitation only." Toronto Star 04/25/06

Monday, April 24, 2006

Seeking A New Revolutionary A hundred years ago, British playwright Harley Granville Barker revolutionized the stage with his embrace of the political and his embrace of realism. In recent years, London theaters have been leading a revival of Barker's plays. But are the revivals missing a crucial point? "Today, Granville Barker's ideas have been assimilated into the mainstream - and now we must go beyond him in our new work. The kind of theatre he advocated - essentially the tentative beginnings of social realism - has been embraced for over 40 years. We need to move on again, and realise that if theatre is evolving beyond this, it is for a very good reason." The Guardian (UK) 04/25/06

Where Has Howard Brenton Been? "English dramatist Howard Brenton has written more than 40 plays, long and short. In Britain he is grouped with such contemporaries as Caryl Churchill, Edward Bond and David Hare. Yet, unlike them, Mr. Brenton is hardly known in the United States." The New York Times 04/23/06

The Pulitzer's Playwright Insult "To sponsor an award, to authorize jurors to search out the best and then to announce that none of their recommendations measure up to some hypothetical benchmark, is a slap in the face not only to their work but to the art they represent." Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 04/23/06

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Pulitzer Doesn't Often Launch Great Theatrical Careers The theatre world is buzzing angrily about the Pulitzer board's decision not to hand out a drama award this year. "But does it matter to Joe or Jane theatergoer? Though the Pulitzer carries a cash prize and a snoot-full of prestige, it's hardly a guarantee that your play is suddenly and immediately going to be staged across the country... In journalism, a Pulitzer Prize is a gold-plated invitation to write your own ticket... In theater, the small-but-tasteful crystal trophy that comes with the Pulitzer Prize makes for a great tchotchke to mark a thrilling moment. But a career maker? Not so much." St. Paul Pioneer Press 04/23/06

The Risk Of The Broadway Crossover Broadway stages continue to be cluttered with Hollywood stars. But are such crossovers really worth it for anyone involved? " For a variety of reasons -- challenge, prestige, New York media exposure, time on their hands, a desire to really act, for once -- these stars can be persuaded to work for not much money at all... But there are serious risks for all concerned. Celebrities may or may not be any good. They're under enhanced scrutiny. And if they embarrass themselves, a lot of people lose in a lot of different ways. And there's no big payday to wipe away the pain." Chicago Tribune 04/23/06

Young at Heart In many cities, the concept of children's theatre is a relatively new one. But in Toronto, where the Young People's Theatre has been going strong for 40 years. "Today, it is Toronto's oldest non-profit professional theatre and the largest in Canada dedicated to programming for young audiences, reaching about 80,000 young people annually... The alumni who've graced its stage are a veritable Who's Who of Canadian talent," and while the theatre had a rough time in its first few years, it is now one of Canada's enduring cultural institutions. Toronto Star 04/22/06

Rebirth of the RSC "Three years ago the Royal Shakespeare Company was in trouble. For all the aura surrounding its name, the company was in debt, its plan to replace its 1930's theater faced stiff opposition, it was without a London home, and its shows were often unexciting. Further, its long-time artistic director, Adrian Noble, stepped down amid a storm of criticism. It was hardly an auspicious moment for Michael Boyd to take over. Yet, in a surprisingly short time, Mr. Boyd has turned things around. And as a measure of the company's revived self-confidence, it is preparing to start its biggest project ever: a yearlong festival of Shakespeare's complete works, staged by its own directors and actors as well as by guest troupes from as far afield as India and Brazil." The New York Times 04/22/06

Friday, April 21, 2006

Death Camp "Superstar" Cancelled Plans for a performance of "Jesus Christ Superstar" at a former Nazi death camp have been cancelled. "It was not a good idea. It did not take into consideration the relations between Christianity and Judaism. I decided that there will be no performance because we must stick to the message of the museum, which is truth, memory, reconciliation." Washington Post (AP) 04/21/06

Naked Audience? Too Much A group called Males au Natural said it planned to strip naked in the audience during a New York play's graphic rape scene, "supposedly to show solidarity with the underdressed actors." But the actors union Equity says it won't require actors to perform if they do.
Backstage 04/21/06

Roberts - Bad Reviews, But A Chance For Tony? Reviews for Julia Roberts' Broadway debut weren't kind. So will she withdraw? Well, it depends on the Tonys. "There are two schools of thought, and where theater people fall depends on whether they think she's got a shot at a Tony Award nomination - which, if she were to get one, would be the raw steak she can slap on her black eye." New York Post 04/21/06

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Not Good Enough For Pulitzer? Why did the Pulitzer board decline to name a winner for drama this year? More than a few playwrights feel snubbed. Adam Rapp, who was among the three finalists for his play "Red Light in Winter," said Tuesday that the lack of a drama award was like "a year without a Santa Claus" for playwrights. Los Angeles Times 04/19/06

  • What A Missing Pulitzer Means "The omission of a drama award, for the 15th time since the inception of the prizes in 1917, denies prestige, $10,000 and a key marketing tool to an American playwright. It also sends an implicit message that 2005 was an off year for new U.S. plays." Bloomberg 04/19/06

Julia Roberts Broadway Debut Draws Mobs Julia Roberts' Broadway debut Wednesday night was a big event. "Hundreds packed the narrow city block outside the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre on 45th Street in Manhattan. Even parking-lot attendants across the street sat three stories up hoping to catch a glimpse of the Hollywood royalty on hand to support one of their biggest stars." Yahoo! (AP) 04/19/06

  • Julia Roberts - So How'd She Do? "Though Ms. Roberts gives a genuinely humble performance, there is no way that this show is not going to be all about Julia. Ms. Roberts is the sole reason this limited-run revival, which ends on June 18, has become the most coveted ticket in town. Mr. Greenberg's slender, elegant play from 1997 about familial disconnectedness and the loneliness of intimacy has certainly never known — and probably will never know again — such fame and fortune. On the other hand, it's almost impossible to discern its artistic virtues from this wooden and splintered interpretation." The New York Times 04/20/06

Mama Mia Heads To Silver Screen "Mama Mia," the ABBA jukebox musical is going to be made into a movie. The musical has been produced live worldwide and made more than $1.6 billion US. "Producers of the film project, including the musical's producer Judy Craymer and ABBA members Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson, are hoping to release the film in 2007." CBC 04/19/06

US Funding For Deaf Theatre Ends The funding, which came from the Department of Education, was canceled in late 2004 when an earmark for cultural experiences for the deaf was struck during the reauthorization of the Individuals With Disabilities in Education Act. The money itself stopped coming to deaf theater groups last year. "We don't know exactly why it was removed," a department spokesman, Jim Bradshaw, said Tuesday by e-mail. "An explanation does not appear in the legislation's report language. About all we can tell you is that since it was an earmark outside of the department, we defer to Congress' judgment on this." Los Angeles Times 04/19/06

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Broadway Fans Starstruck Over Julia Julia Roberts' appearance on Broadway has caused anightly scrum of fans outside the theatre. "Each night, as the performance ends, fans gather behind barriers and across 45th Street from the Jacobs to catch a glimpse and get playbills autographed. The theatre's security team has set up an exclusive pen for ticket-holders, who can line up on one side of the stage door." The Globe & Mail (AP) 04/18/06

Cimolino To Lead Stratford? Ontario's Stratford Festival is expected to name Antoni Cimolino as its new director. "Over the past two years, the search committee has interviewed important figures from English-language theatre around the world, but in the end the board has apparently decided to go with an individual who has literally grown up with the festival since joining it as an actor 18 years ago." Toronto Star 04/18/06

Monday, April 17, 2006

Where Are The Jukebox Musicals Taking Us? "Jukebox musicals have always been controversial, inspiring hate and devotion in equal measure. Some have defended them on the grounds that they are harmless entertainment; others have dismissed them as not like 'proper' musicals (Chicago, Evita, The Producers), just the cynical repackaging of dusty back catalogues and fading reputations.
What no one could deny is that these hybrids of pop nostalgia and theatrical sawdust are here to stay."
The Observer (UK) 04/16/06

Pulitzer Passes On 2006 Theatre Award There is no Pulitzer for drama this year. Adam Rapp's Red Light Winter, Rolin Jones' The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow, and Christopher Durang's Miss Witherspoon were expected to be frontrunners the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Backstage 04/17/06

Broadway Theatre Gets Thuggish Over Cameras A patron complains that at a Broadway Theatre recently, audience members were forced to surrender their cameras upon entering the theatre. "At the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre to catch a preview of Richard Greenberg's 'Three Days of Rain,' starring Julia Roberts and opening officially Wednesday, he and other patrons were ordered — rather rudely, he says — to surrender their cameras before going in or to give up their tickets. Despite years of theatergoing, he says, he's rarely experienced treatment so brusque." Los Angeles Times 04/16/06

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Politically Incorrect - On Our Stages? "How daringly political will we allow our stages to become? The question urges us to move beyond the self-congratulatory platitudes and catchphrases that we who love this art form all too readily dispense. It comes down to something more difficult: Can we envision (and, more to the point, finance) a theater that embraces what the great midcentury Italian critic Nicola Chiaromonte called its inherent and potentially liberating 'unpopularity'?" Los Angeles Times 04/16/06

Tarzan Comes In From The Jungle Disney's new "Tarzan" musical is "one of the most expensive shows ever mounted on Broadway, with a budget rumored to be between $15 million and $20 million. It is also one of the riskiest, even for Disney, a company which has had an excellent Broadway track record, with three hits in three tries. Most shows open out of town, where problems can be identified and fixed far from prying eyes. But "Tarzan," based on the hit 1999 animated film and the classic Edgar Rice Burroughs novel that inspired it, will land on Broadway cold." The New York Times 04/16/06

A Reprieve For Borderline Theatre? Two prominent Scottish politicians want to reconsider the decision made earlier this year to cut off funding for the Borderline Theatre. "Justice Minister Cathy Jamieson and Des Browne, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, want to reverse the decision to cut the theatre's £215,000 funding." BBC 04/16/06

Friday, April 14, 2006

"Producers" To Hit Vegas A year ago Las Vegas was being talked up as the new Broadway as high-profile shows opened in fancy theatres built for them. It hasn't exactly worked out as planned. But producers of "The Producers" are still eager to give the Silver State a try with a 90-minute version of the Broadway hit. "The intermissionless Las Vegas version of the musical, which has a book by Brooks and Thomas Meehan and a score by Brooks, will be directed and choreographed by Susan Stroman, who also supervised the original stage production." Backstage 04/14/06

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Leave Spacey Alone! Apparently, not every critic in the UK has it in for Kevin Spacey and his (perhaps) quixotic quest to revive the Old Vic. "Mr Spacey has used his energy to put on original work in a theatre which has daunted directors for decades. He should be thanked for it rather than moaned at." The Guardian (UK) 04/14/06

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Spacey Strikes Back Kevin Spacey isn't taking the latest blasts from the London press lying down. Despite the early closure of his latest production at the Old Vic, Spacey insists that audiences love what he's doing, and accuses the city's notoriously sharp-tongued critics of having it in for him. "In the end, Spacey is confronted by two dilemmas. One is the celebrity trap of which he is both beneficiary and victim. The other is the anachronistic position of the Old Vic in the modern world." The Guardian (UK) 04/13/06

Who's Afraid Of A Film Shoot? The film adaptation of Edward Albee's classic play, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, has become a classic in its own right. But 40 years ago, when filming began, not everyone was thrilled about the production, particularly some alumni of New England's Smith College, where much of the movie was shot. Chicago Tribune 04/12/06

Gov't Funding Cuts Threaten Deaf Theatre "Several deaf-theater groups are struggling to stay afloat after the federal government mysteriously cut funds for cultural programs for the deaf around the country 16 months ago. Officials at the Department of Education, which administered a the program that distributed some $2 million a year in grants, said they did not see the change coming and did not know who in Congress had ordered the cut in December 2004." The New York Times 04/12/06

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

London Theatre: Home Of Loose Ends "What do we want these days from the theater? Increasingly, or so audiences as much as dictate, stories that come to a handy, even cozy conclusion, where life's knots aren't so much sentimentally unraveled as they are re- assembled in a nice, neat bow. So the London stage deserves credit this, and virtually every, season for proffering plays that take the harder, more circuitous path, leaving open-ended the fates of characters whom lesser writers would lead to the sort of preordained conclusion that leaves spectators happy but isn't necessarily true to life." International Herald Tribune 04/12/06

Facelift For Toronto PAC Toronto's St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts is getting a $3 million overhaul, which the center's board hopes will reinvigorate its mission as well as its image. "The centre, conceived as one of Canada's Centennial projects, opened in 1970. It is home to seven resident companies — including the Canadian Stage Company — and is used by more than 50 other arts and community organizations annually." Toronto Star 04/11/06

Monday, April 10, 2006

Another UK Theatre Chooses A Woman To Lead "The Birmingham Rep Theatre has appointed a female artistic director for the first time in its 93-year history. Rachel Kavanaugh, an associate director at the venue, will replace Jonathan Church, who left Birmingham this month to run the Chichester Festival Theatre. Kavanaugh's appointment is a significant addition to the small but rapidly growing list of UK theatres steered by women." The Guardian (UK) 04/11/06

Is Spacey Out Of His League At The Old Vic? When actor Kevin Spacey took charge of London's Old Vic, hopes were high that he would breathe new life into the place. But with the early closing of a Robert Altman-produced version of Resurrection Blues, many are saying Spacey isn't up to the job. "While the odd flop is forgiveable, Resurrection Blues is simply the latest in a series of duff experiences at the Old Vic... If Spacey is determined to run the theatre as a commercial enterprise - and he has rejected all suggestions that he should seek subsidy - he must listen, learn and quickly realise two things: that he is the Old Vic's biggest drawing-card, and that audiences are currently hungry for classics." The Guardian (UK) 04/10/06

The Rachel Corrie Problem If New York Theatre Workshop's decision to stage "My Name is Rachel Corrie" was controversial, its decision to postpone it was even more so... Washington Post 04/09/06

Sunday, April 9, 2006

Humana Harvest This year's Humana Festival of new plays in Louisville was one of the strongest ever, writes Tony Brown... The Plain Dealer (Cleveland) 04/09/06

Edinburgh Fringers Protest Fee Hikes Edinburgh's Fringe Festival artists are complaining about hikes in the fees they have to pay to perform. "Edinburgh City Council has more than quadrupled the cost of the licence in some cases, but says it will phase the changes in over three years. All venues have to purchase a theatre licence before shows can perform." BBC 04/09/06

New Guthrie Faces Seating Headache When Minneapolis's Guthrie Theater moves into its massive new riverfront digs this summer, it will have by far the best facilities in the Twin Cities at its disposal. It will also have fewer seats in its main theater, and for some longtime Guthrie subscribers, that's a big problem. "Subscribers have been flooding the theater's phone lines for the past two weeks, trying to figure out where they'll be sitting — and why." St. Paul Pioneer Press 04/08/06

Best Of All, You Don't Have To Pay An Actor Beckett was known for his dialogue, of course, but some of the most intriguing moments of any Beckett play are the silences. Similarly, Beckett's most fascinating character may have been the one who never appeared onstage. And ever since Waiting For Godot, playwrights have been using the absent character in all sorts of ways. "Godot is the supreme example, but stage-shy characters can take many guises - despite not being there. They can expose hypocritical behaviour or create unease; they can trigger comedy or regret - or even encourage metaphysical speculation." Financial Times (UK) 04/07/06

Beckett Centenary Includes Some Rarities Samuel Beckett would have been 100 this year, and in Dublin, the celebrated Gate Theatre is commemorating the occasion by staging a full season of Beckett, including a play originally written for television, but never before seen on stage. "[The Beckett Estate] has intervened to stop certain productions that broke with Beckett’s exceptionally precise instructions, but the Gate has co-operated with it to permit certain changes in a number of Becketts. Taking Eh Joe from film to stage brings this collaboration to a new peak of imagination." Financial Times (UK) 04/08/06

Chicago's Newest Star "At the age of 36, the Chicago playwright Lydia R. Diamond has suddenly drilled her way out of a respectable but muted Midwestern career. This month, this articulate and self-revealing African-American scribe has two world premieres in simultaneous production at respected Chicago theaters -- a highly unusual and impressive feat. And Chicago is by no means the end of it. On a national level, she's white-hot." Chicago Tribune 04/09/06

Friday, April 7, 2006

Broadway Gossip! Woo-Hoo! Spring has sprung in New York, and as usual, the gossip birds are out in force in the city's theatre scene. Latest tidbits out of the rumor mill: Tarzan may have issues, but it's a Disney show, so it's raking in the cash regardless; no one on Broadway knows what the hell a "Drowsy Chaperone" is supposed to be, or why anyone would pay money to watch it; and the supposedly dead-and-buried vampire musical "Lestat" may actually have some life left in it. New York Post 04/07/06

Another Sondheim Revival Gets A Broadway Shot A new production of Stephen Sondheim's Company, directed by John Doyle and currently playing in Cincinnati, is headed to Broadway in time for the 2006-07 season... The New York Times 04/07/06

Wednesday, April 5, 2006

Not All Plagiarism Stories End Badly It was just over a year ago that UK playwright Bryony Lavery's career appeared to be on the verge of imploding. Accused of plagiarizing large portions of her award-winning play, "Frozen," from a New Yorker profile of a psychologist specializing in serial killers, Lavery argued vociferously against the charges, but faced an avalanche of publicity. But instead of killing her career, the accusations caused the artistic community to rally around her, and even the New Yorker author rushed to her defense. The Guardian (UK) 04/06/06

A Sick Little Musical (We'll Make It Better) They're making musicals about everything these days. Next up? How about Britain's national Health Service? Really: "Featuring such toe-tapping numbers as The Morning Song of the Poor Hard-Pressed GP and The Great Hospital Sweepstake, NHS The Musical! is described as a "living autopsy" by its director." The Guardian (UK) 04/04/06

Ottawa Theatre's Bold Move Peter Hinton, the new head of Ottawa's National Arts Center English is planning a bold first season. He's offering an all-Canadian program that "draws heavily on the work of small, independent theatre groups across the country and includes five world premieres. Gone are the familiar classics or the recent Broadway hits that are the foundation of subscription seasons in big theatres across North America. In their place, Hinton is daring Ottawa's notoriously unadventuresome audiences to try something new and unknown." The Globe & Mail (Canada) 04/05/06

Tuesday, April 4, 2006

Humana Thinks Big At 30 The Humana Festival turns 30 this year, and the festival's playwrights are thinking big. "The three stages at the Actors Theater of Louisville are awash in bold ideas wrapped in colorful theatrical packaging." The New York Times 04/05/06

Is Melbourne Losing Its Sense Of Humour? "The success of the annual Comedy Festival — now in its 20th year and one of the world's Big Three — has become the starting point for most aspiring comics rather than the objective it once was for those who had spent years proving material and building confidence in rough-and-tumble rooms that ran year-round. Has Melbourne lost its reputation for funny bones?" The Age (Melbourne) 04/04/06

Ask The Audience - LOTR Surveys The Crowd Producers of the Lord of the Rings musical now playing in Toronto are offering audience members bribes to answer questions about the show. "According to LOTR producer Kevin Wallace, the surveys are principally intended to determine the show's demographic -- who's coming, and where they're coming from -- in order to target media and public relations campaigns more precisely. But it also asks respondents to cite elements they liked and didn't like about the production." The Globe & Mail (Canada) 04/04/06

Monday, April 3, 2006

Julia Roberts A Broadway Box Office Hit The actress's Broadway debut sold out in its first week of previews, earning almost $1 million at the box office. "The eight performances, which began March 28, played to 101 percent of capacity (which includes standing room) at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre, the league said. The Richard Greenberg play — Roberts' Broadway debut — opens April 19." Yahoo! (AP) 04/03/06

Sunday, April 2, 2006

Broadway's Star Turns (And Turns) Julia Roberts is the latest in a long line of movie stars to try a spin on Broadway. "Broadway is dependent on movie, TV and pop-music stars to generate interest in theater, and the announcement that the toothy, $20-million-a-picture leading lady would headline the generational family drama by Richard Greenberg ("Take Me Out") was no exception." Newsday 04/02/06

How London Learned Modern Theatre "The cliché runs that England was a theatrical desert in the early 1950s. It was certainly true that London was far from the theatre capital of the world. Serious drama was served up with lashings of heavy sauce from Paris, where the long-winded works of Anouilh debuted, and where a little-known Irish modernist was premiering En attendant Godot. Entertainment breezed in from New York, where the American musical was responding to the brash energies of the booming 1950s with all the relish of Oh! What a Beautiful Morning. There were stirrings in London drama, however." Sunday Times (UK) 04/02/06

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