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SAMPLE ISSUE:  Friday, February 5, 2016

This Weekend’s Highlights:

Friday, February 5

* All The Way, by Robert Schenkkan, directed by Anthony Powell, featuring C. David Johnson, Todd Cerveris, Terence Archie, James Newcomb, Tracey Conyer Lee, Jordan Barbour, Steve Brady, Laurence Curry, Paul DeBoy, Sam Gregory, Mike Hartman, Cajardo Lindsey, Kathleen McCall, Geoffrey Kent, Jonathan Earl Peck, Philip Pleasants and Jeffrey Roark, with Adeoye, Diana Dresser, Josh Robinson, Erik Sandvold and Erin Willis, opens at Denver Center Theatre Company.

* Guys and Dolls, directed & choreographed by Ted Pappas, featuring Joel Hurt Jones (Nathan), Charlie Brady (Sky), Kimberly Doreen Burns (Sarah), Kirsten Wyatt (Adelaide), Quinn Patrick Shannon (Nicely Nicely), Gavan Pamer (Benny Southstreet), Sharon Schaller (General Cartwright), Joe Jackson (Rusty Charlie) and Larry John Meyers (Arvide), with Tony Bingham, Stephen Dagrosa, Jerry Gallagher, Michael Greer, Daina Michelle Griffith, Ashton Guthrie, Daniel Krell, Stephanie Maloney, Mara Newbery, J. Alex Noble, Michael Sullivan and Andrea Weinzierl, opens at Pittsburgh Public Theater.

* The Diary of Anne Frank, by Frances Goodrich & Albert Hackett, adapted by Wendy Kesselman, directed by Marissa Wolf, featuring Daniel Beeman (Peter Van Daan), Martin Buchanan (Mr. Dussel), Peggy Friesen  (Edith Frank), Nicole Marie Green (Margo Frank), Shanna Jones (Miep), Merle Moores (Mrs. Van Daan), Andy Perkins (Mr. Kraler), Victor Raider-Wexler (Mr. Van Daan), Rachel Shapiro (Anne Frank) and Lenny Wolpe (Otto Frank), opens at Kansas City Rep.

Ensemble Studio Theatre/LA‘s Watching O.J., by David McMillan, directed by Keith Szarabajka, featuring Angela Bullock, Kareem Ferguson, Robert Gossett, Tony Pasqualini,  Lisa Renee Pitts, Tarah Pollock, Kate Prendergast, Roy Vongtama and Kelly Wolf, opens at LA’s Atwater Village Theatre.

* Thicker Than Water, by Roy Battocchio, directed by Stu Berg, featuring Heather Alyse Becker, Johnny Ferretti, Mary Garripoli, Maria Kress, Jack Kutcher, Connie Mellors, David Mingrino, Vince Palmieri and Joseph Bongiovanni, with the vocal talents of Jim Beaver, Stu Berg, Lee Meriwether, Connie Sawyer and Seemah Wilder, opens at LA’s Theatre West.

* Blackbird, by David Harrower, directed by Joe Mantello, featuring Jeff Daniels and Michelle Williams, begins previews at Broadway’s Belasco Theatre.

* Hand to God, by Robert Askins, directed by Moritz von Stuelpnagel, featuring Harry Melling (Jason/Tryone), Janie Dee (Margery), Jemima Rooper (Jessica), Neil Pearson (Pastor Greg) and Kevin Mains (Timothy), begins previews at London’s Vaudeville Theatre.

* Aubergine, by Julia Cho, directed by Tony Taccone, featuring Safiya Fredericks, Tyrone Mitchell Henderson, Tim Kang, Jennifer Lim, Joseph Yang and Sab Shimono, begins previews at Berkeley Rep.

* Fade, world premiere by Tanya Saracho, directed by Jerry Ruiz, featuring Mariana Fernández and Eddie Martinez, begins previews at Denver Center.

* Daniel Reichard Celebrates Rodgers and Hammerstein concert, at 9:30 PM at54 Below.

* Encores! A New Brain 2-disc cast album, by William Finn & James Lapine, featuring Jonathan Groff, Ana Gasteyer, Dan Fogler and Aaron Lazar, released on MP3 & CD.
DownloadOrder  Download/Order here.

* “Tony Yazbeck: The Floor Above Me” released on MP3 & CD.
DownloadOrder  Download/Order here.

* Broadway Week, offering two-for-one tickets to more than 25 Broadway shows, concludes. Click here for a list of participating shows.

Saturday, February 6

* The Mountaintop, by Katori Hall, directed by Roger Guenveur Smith, featuring Larry Bates and Danielle Moné Truitt, opens at LA’s Matrix Theatre.

* Her Requiem, by Greg Pierce, directed by Kate Whoriskey, featuring Naian Gonzalez Norvind, Peter Friedman and Mare Winningham, with Kelly McQuail, Robbie Collier Sublett and Joyce Van Patten, begins previews at Lincoln Center‘s Claire Tow Theater.

* 2666, world premiere by Roberto Bolaño, adapted & directed by Robert Falls with Seth Bockley, featuring Charin Alvarez, Janet Ulrich Brooks, Yadira Correa, Sandra Delgado, Alejandra Escalante, Sean Fortunato, Henry Godinez, Larry Grimm, Eric Lynch, Mark L. Montgomery, Adam Poss, Demetrios Troy, Juan Villa, Jonathan Weir and Nicole Wiesner, begins previews at Chicago’s Goodman Theatre.

* Jerry Dixon & Mario Cantone in concert, at 8:30 PM at Lincoln Center‘s Appel Room.

* Brian Stokes Mitchell in concert with the LA Philharmonic, at 8 PM at LA’sDisney Concert Hall.

* “A Roundabout Road to Broadway” short film (22 min.) airs at 7 PM on NYC’s NBC4 as well as online here.

* Grey Gardens, by Doug Wright, Scott Frankel & Michael Korie, directed by Thom Southerland, featuring Sheila Hancock and Jenna Russell, with Billy Boyle, Jeremy Legat, Ako Mitchell, Rachel Anne Rayham, Aaron Sidwell, Alana Hinge, with Grace Jenkins, Rebecca Nardin and Eleanor Waldron, closes at London’s Southwark Playhouse.

* SpeakEasy Stage‘s Violet, by Jeanine Tesori & Brian Crawley, directed by Paul Daigneault, featuring Alison McCartan, Nile Scott Hawver, Daniel Belnavis, John F. King, Carolyn Saxon and Kathy St. George, with Tyla Collier, Patrick Greeley, Audree Hedequist, Stephen Markarian, and Michael Mendiola, closes at the Boston Center for the Arts.

* Alice Ripley & Emily Skinner: Unattached closes at 54 Below.

Sunday, February 7

Huntington Theatre Company‘s Milk Like Sugar, by Kirsten Greenridge, directed by M. Bevin O’Gara, featuring Jasmine Carmichael, Ramona Lisa Alexander, Shazi Raja, Carolina Sanchez, Shanae Burch, Marc Pierre and Mathew Harris, opens at Boston’s Calderwood Pavilion.

* This is Cabaret concert, starring Ann Hampton Callaway, with special guest Marilyn Maye, at 6 PM at NYC’s Birdland.

* Villain: De Blanks improv game show, featuring Lesli Margherita, Jim Newman, Kate Wetherhead, Trent Armand Kendall, Hank Morris, Eddie Capuano and Michael Riedel, at 7:30 PM at NYC’s Triad/Stage 72.

* Carolee Carmello concludes her run as Madame du Maurier in Finding Neverland at Broadway’s Lunt Fontanne Theatre.

* Tea in the Afternoon, by Vanessa Shealy, directed by Nick Corley, featuring Alice Spivak and Tayler Beth Anderson, closes at Off-Broadway’s Studio Theatre.

* Domesticated, written & directed by Bruce Norris, featuring Tom Irwin, Mary Beth Fisher, Emily Chang, Esteban Andres Cruz, Meighan Gerachis, Rae Gray, Beth Lacke, Mildred Marie Langford, Melanie Neilan, Meg Thalken and Karen Janes Woditsch, closes at Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre.

* Nice Fish, by Mark Rylance & poet Louis Jenkins, directed by Claire van Kampen, featuring Louis Jenkins, Jim Lichtscheidl, Mark Rylance, Bob Davis and Kayli Carter, closes at Boston’s A.R.T.

* Georgie: The Life and Death of George Rose, world premiere written & performed by Ed Dixon, directed by Scott Schwartz, closes at VA’s Signature Theatre.

* The Piano Lesson, by August Wilson, directed by Jade King Carroll, featuring Cleavant Derricks (Wining Boy), John Earl Jelks (Doaker), Marcus Callender (Boy Willie). David Pegram (Lymon), Shannon Janee Antalan (Grace), Owiso Odera (Avery), Miriam A. Hyman (Berniece) and Frances Brown (Maretha), closes at NJ’sMcCarter Theatre.

* Little Shop of Horrors, directed & choreographed by Amanda Dehnert, featuring Lauren Molina (Audrey), Ari Butler (Seymour), Larry Cahn (Mr. Mushnik), Joey Taranto (Orin), Kev Abrams (Puppeteer), Eddie Cooper (Voice of the Plant),  Hallie Bulleit (Urchin), Brittany Campbell (Urchin), Kate Ferber (Urchin), Injoy Fountain (Urchin) and Alanna Saunders (Urchin), closes at Cleveland Playhouse.

* A Moon for the Misbegotten, by Eugene O’Neill, directed by Kate Galvin, featuring Angela Smith, Anthony Lawton, Michael P. Toner, and Jamison Foreman, closes at Philadelphia’s Walnut Street Theatre.

* The Hampton Years, by Jacqueline E. Lawton, directed by Chris Hanna, featuring Adam Greer, Tre Davis, Meredith Johnshon, Chandra Thomas and Eric Harrell, closes at Virginia Stage Company.

* Sam Harris’ Ham: A Musical Memoir, directed by Billy Porter & Ken Sawyer, closes at LA’s LGBT Center.


Broadway-13  Complete casting has been announced for Duncan Sheik & Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa’s American Psycho, to begin previews Mar. 24 and open Apr. 20 at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre, directed by Rupert Goold, with choreography by Lynne Page.

Cast 10: Benjamin Walker (Patrick Bateman), Alice Ripley (Patrick’s Mother/Mrs. Wolfe), Heléne Yorke (Evelyn Williams), Jennifer Damiano (Jean), Drew Moerlein (Paul Owen), Krystina Alabado (Vandan), Dave Thomas Brown (David van Patten), Jordan Dean (Luis Carruthers), Anna Eilinsfeld (Victoria), Jason Hite (Sean Bateman), Ericka Hunter (Sabrina), Holly James (Christine), Keith Randolph Smith (Detective Kimball), Alex Michael Stoll (Craig McDermott) and Morgan Weed (Courtney Lawrence), with Brandon Kalm, Sydney Morton, Anthony Sagaria, Theo Stockman and Neka Zang.

“Set amid the excess of 1980s Manhattan, American Psycho tells the story of Patrick Bateman, a young and handsome Wall Street banker who pursues his darkest American dreams. Patrick and his elite group of friends spend their days in exclusive restaurants, hot clubs and luxury labels. But at night, Patrick takes part in a more sinful indulgence, and his mask of sanity is starting to slip…”


Off Broadway 1 Roundabout presents Alfred Uhry & Robert Waldman’s The Robber Bridegroom Feb. 18 – May 29 (opening Mar. 13) at the Laura Pels Theatre, directed by Alex Timbers, with musical direction by Justin Levine and choreography by Connor Gallagher.

Cast 10: Steven Pasquale (Jamie Lockhart), Andrew Durand (Little Harp), Evan Harrington (Big Harp), Greg Hildreth (Goat), Leslie Kritzer (Salome), Ahna O’Reilly (Rosamund), Nadia Quinn (Raven/Goat’s Mother), Lance Roberts (Clement Musgrove) and Devere Rogers (Airie/Man).

Video 1  Video: In rehearsal


Event 2  Carol Burnett: An Evening of Laughter and Reflection will take place in Chicago and NYC:

Chicago (May 17, 19, 20) at the Chicago Theatre.
NYC (Sept. 16, 17) at the Beacon Theatre.

“Burnett will take questions from the audience, in a format that harkens back to the legendary openings of ‘The Carol Burnett Show’ where her studio audience had an unfiltered opportunity to engage Carol with questions and receive spontaneous answers.”


Thumbs Up  The review restrictions placed on the Mary-Arrchie Theatre Company’s production of American Buffalo by publishing company Samuel French, have been lifted thanks to an anonymous call to playwright David Mamet – according to the Chicago Tribune.

The long-lived Chicago theatre announced that it would be closing its doors following the staging of Mamet’s American Buffalo, ending its 30-year history. According to the Tribune, Samuel French Inc. (the licensing agent for the play) told director Carlo Garcia that because Chicago was a restricted city, it could only allow the production with limited advertising and no reviews. Well-known plays are often restricted in prominent locations.

Thanks to an anonymous personal call to Mamet, explaining the unique nature of the theatre’s final show, the restrictions were lifted. The show, which began performances Jan. 28, will forge ahead with its scheduled Feb. 5 press opening.


TV 2  CBS’ upcoming comedy thriller “Braindead” will star Tony Shalhoub and Aaron Tveit, which is set to premiere this summer.

“The show follow Laurel, a young, fresh-faced Hill staffer in her first job in Washington, D.C., who discovers two things: The government has stopped working, and alien spawn have come to earth and eaten the brains of a growing number of Congressmen and Hill staffers.”


Video 1  Video: Promo for Broadway’s Shuffle Along.


Los Angeles 3  Rogue Machine Theatre presents Samuel D. Hunter’s  Pocatello Feb. 20 – Mar. 27 at the Met Theatre, directed by John Perrin Flynn.

Cast 10: Eden Brolin, Anne Gee Byrd, Matthew Elkins, Mark L. Taylor, Rebecca Larsen, Tracie Lockwood, Rob Nagle, Justin Okin, Trevor Peterson and Jennifer Pollono.

“Eddie manages an Italian chain restaurant in Pocatello — a small, unexceptional American city that is slowly being paved over with strip malls and franchises. But he is struggling to maintain his sense of home in his own hometown, anxiously grappling with the changing landscape and his shifting relationships with family and co-workers. Against the harsh backdrop of Samuel D. Hunter’s Idaho, this heartbreaking comedy is a cry for connection in an increasingly lonely American landscape.”


RIP  Bob Elliott, the surviving member of the long-lived comedy team of Bob and Ray, died Feb. 2 at his home in Cundy’s Harbor, ME. He was 92.

Mr. Elliott was the smaller, meeker half of Bob and Ray. Short, balding and milquetoast-ish, he stood in apt contrast to his bigger, more blustery partner, Ray Goulding. They shared, however, a talent for understated, low-key humor that set them apart from their contemporaries in every decade of their long career, which began in the 1940s. They were particularly skilled in spoofing the the media and advertising worlds. The United States Mint was sold, in their words as “”One of the nation’s leading producers of genuine U.S. currency.”


Gala 2  TDF‘s 2016 gala, Disney on Broadway, will take place Mon. Mar. 14 at NYC’s Gotham Hall (1356 Broadway at 36th Street), hosted by James Monroe Iglehart.

Honoring 5 Thomas Schumacher.

Performers TBA.


Regional 3 The world premiere of Dan Elish & Douglas J. Cohen’s Mann…and Wife continues through Feb. 21 at Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma, directed by Michael Baron.

Cast 10: Zachary Prince, Liz Shivener and Mateja Govich.

“With Henry Mann’s ex-fiancée’s wedding on the horizon, Henry has to find the perfect date. With one actor playing all of his love life, the musical includes a tuneful score and charming story that reminds the audience of the timeless need for love and a lasting relationship.”


Concert 12  Robert Creighton: Lucky in Love will take place Mon. Feb. 8 at 7 PM at NYC’s Metropolitan Room.


London 3  Dreamgirls will begin previews in November and open in December at the Savoy Theatre, directed & choreographed by Casey Nicholaw.

Cast 10: Amber Riley (Effie).

Dates, additional casting and further details TBA.


Star Statue - smallThe 61st Annual Drama Desk Awards will be presented on Sun. June 5 at 8 PM at NYC’s Town Hall, written by Bill Rosenfeld and directed by Jack Cummings III.

Nominations will be announced Thurs. Apr. 28 at 10 AM at 54 Below.


Off Broadway 1 Primary Stages has announced casting for Ike Holter’s Exit Strategy, to run Mar. 30 – May 6 at the Cherry Lane Theatre, directed by Kip Fagan.

Cast 10: Michael Cullen, Aimé Donna Kelly, Rey Lucas, Deirdre Madigan, Christina Nieves, Brandon J. Pierce and Ryan Spahn.

“Following the chaotic final days of an urban public high school, Exit Strategy is a drama that explores the future of public education.”


Video 1  Video: Highlights from Emily Skinner & Alice Ripley: Unattached at 54 Below.


Star Statue - smallThe 30th Annual MAC Awards will take place on Tues. Mar. 29 at 7:30 PM at NYC’s BB King Blues Club & Grill.

Honoring 5 Jamie deRoy.


Regional 3  Vanessa Stewart, Taylor Hackford & Jake Broder’s Louis & Keely: “Live” at the Sahara will run Feb. 24 – Mar. 27 (opening Feb. 27) at Laguna Playhouse, directed by Hackford, with choreography by Vernel Bagneris.

Cast 10: Anthony Crivello and Vanessa Stewart, with Erin Matthews and Paul Perroni.


Video 1  Video: James Corden prepares for hosting the Tony Awards by rapping Hamilton.


Regional 3 Sandra Tsing Loh’s The Madwoman In The Volvo will run June 2-26 (opening June 5) at the Pasadena Playhouse, directed by Lisa Peterson.

Cast 10: Sandra Tsing Loh, Caroline Aaron and Shannon Holt.

“The memoir’s three-character stage adaptation is a bumper-car ride through mid-life madness, all sparked by an unlikely trip to Burning Man.”


Change 6  To allow Saoirse Ronan to attend the Academy Awards, the 1st preview and opening night of The Crucible has been rescheduled at Broadway’sWalter Kerr Theatre:

Previews  will now begin Mar. 1 (originally Feb. 29)
Opening night will now take place Mar. 31 (originally Apr. 7)

The production continues through July 17.


Article 3 Article: Brian Stokes Mitchell on the LA Philharmonic and Broadway’s Shuffle Along.