Theater News for July 9
Mama Rose: Many actresses have played the iconic “Mama Rose” in Gypsy: A Musical Fable, but when Leslie Uggams takes the stage as Rose at the Connecticut Repertory Theater on July 10, it will be unique. Uggams, a Tony winner, is heading a multi-racial cast, a first for the show. The show runs through July 20. For tickets call 860-486-2113 or visit www.crt.uconn.edu.
Already Extended: Before the first performances of Fiddler on the Roof began at Goodspeed Musicals in East Haddam ticket demand had skyrocketed. As a result, ten performances have been added and the show extended to Sept. 12. To get your tickets visit www.goodspeed.org or call 860-873-8668.
Ready for Summer: Long Wharf Theater will be offering some summer fare this year with a production by Miracle or 2 Productions of The Bikinis from July 9 to 27. The show celebrates the girl groups of the’60s. The plot around which the songs are woven are about a group (The Bikinis) who reunite after 20 years at a benefit to raise funds for the Sandy Shores Mobile Home Beach Resort. It sounds like an appropriately light summer show. For tickets visit www.longwharf.org or call 203-787-4282.
Elvis: Ivoryton Playhouse is in the pop music mode with All Shook Up, a show that debuted at Goodspeed’s Norma Terris Theater in Chester before going to Broadway. Inspired by and featuring the songs of Elvis, All Shook Up tells the story about the effect a guitar playing singer has on everyone and everything in a small “square little town.” It runs through July 27. For tickets, call 860-767-7318 or www.ivorytonplayhouse.org.
Love, Lies and Blackmail: That’s what is up next at Westport Country Playhouse which will present famed film and stage director Ingmar Bergman’s adaptation of A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen. Nora will run July 16 to August 2. Director David Kennedy said, Bergman’s “interpretation is both reverent and totally daring, and the results are as fresh as can be. It’s powerful, moving, surprising, and feels totally of the moment. Whether you’re a lifelong Ibsen fan or have never seen his work, Nora will resonate.” I saw a production at Williamstown Playhouse many years ago and found it fascinating. For tickets call 888-927-7529 or visit www.westportplayhouse.org.
Onto Anastasia: After winning the Tony for directing A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, Hartford Stage Artistic Director Darko Tresnjak will be directing a reading of stage musical based on the animated film Anastasia. Lots of big names are attached to this property — Lynn Ahrens & Stephen Flaherty for music/lyrics (they have written Ragtime and other shows) and Terrence McNally for the book (he wrote this year’s Tony nominee Mothers and Sons).
New York News: Tickets are now on sale for It’s Only a Play, a revised version of Terrence McNally’s comedy that has an all-star cast: Nathan Lane, Matthew Broderick, Stockard Channing, Megan Mullally and Rupert Grint AND is directed by Jack O’Brien. The limited run, 17-week engagement begins in September. Tickets are available at telecharge. The King and I is the next musical to be revived at Lincoln Center. The production will be directed by Bartlett Sher and use the original orchestrations and the original choreography by Jerome Robbins. It will star Kelli O’Hara and Ken Watanabe. O’Hara and Sher collaborated on the hugely successful revival of South Pacific. The show will open in the spring. Another musical scheduled for Broadway — this time in January — is Honeymoon in Vegas based on the film. It stars Tony Danza, who has proved himself to be an adept musical former, Rob McClure and Brynn O’Malley. The show had a hugely successful run last year at New Jersey’s Papermill Playhouse and seemed headed to Broadway this past spring until no appropriate theater could be found.
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