Friday, April 30, 2010

Jonathan Demme Interview

Jonathan Demme, the Oscar winning director of films like The Silence of the Lambs and the remake of The Manchurian Candidate was interviewed on about a play he is currently directing and about which of his films he would most like to see onstage.  A link to the article is below ... enjoy!

Drama Critics Circle Award

The Drama Critics Circle Award, given out by twenty-two critics based at daily newspapers, magazines, wire services, and websites based primarily in the New York metropolitan area, had announced a winner.  Horton Foote's The Orphan's Home Cycle has won the award for Best Play of 2009-2010, a prize that comes with a $2500 cash prize made possible by the Lucille Lortel Foundation.  No awards were given out this year in the categories of Best Musical or Best Foreign Play.

Rose as Rosie?

Daniel Radcliffe and the upcoming revival of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, previously announced to be seeking a 2011 opening in a production to be directed by Rob Ashford, has a new co-star in Rose Hemmingway, according to The UK Daily Mail.  Rose will play the secretary Rosemary Pilkington -- Radcliffe's love interest.

Final Eligibility Rulings

The Tony Administration Committee met for the fourth and final time today to make their final round of decisions about the 2009-2010 Broadway season.  They made decisions about the final thirteen productions of the season: Come Fly Away, Red, Lend Me a Tenor, The Addams Family, Million Dollar Quartet, La Cage aux Folles, American Idiot, Sondheim on Sondheim, Promises, Promises, Fences, Enron, Collected Stories and Everyday Rapture.  The decisions were as follows:

Eddie Redmayne will be considered eligible in the Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Play category for his performance in Red.

Anthony LaPaglia will be considered eligible in the Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Play category for his performance in Lend Me a Tenor.

John Gallagher Jr. will be considered eligible in the Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical category for his performance inAmerican Idiot.

Barbara Cook, Vanessa Williams and Tom Wopat will be considered eligible in the Best Performance by a Featured Actress/Actor in a Musical categories respectively for their performances in Sondheim on Sondheim.

Viola Davis will be considered eligible in the Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play category for her performance in Fences.

Norbert Leo Butz will be considered eligible in the Best Performance by a Leading Actor in Play category for his performance in Enron.

Adam Cork (music) and Lucy Prebble (lyrics) will be considered eligible in the Best Score (music and/or lyrics written for the theater) category for Enron.

Collected Stories will be eligible in the Best Revival of a Play category.

Linda Lavin will be considered eligible in the Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play category for her performance in Collected Stories.

All other decisions were consistent with opening night credits.

Everyday Rapture

The final entry in the 2009-2010 Broadway season has opened and it is Sherie Rene Scott's semi-autobiographical musical, Everyday Rapture.  The off-Broadway production, based on a 2008 benegit show Sherie did for the Phyllis Newman Women's Health Initiative called You May Now Worship Me, opened in 2009 and was so (if you'll excuse the pun) rapturously received that buzz immediately began around the topic of when the show would come to Broadway -- a process about which the New York Times recently reported.  Well, by sheer luck (for Miss Scott, anyhow, at the cost of Megan Mullally and the rest of the Lips Together, Teeth Apart revival that never ended up materializing) the show finally made the jump and is finally here and the reviews are just as gloriously rapturous as before ... a big feat for Ms. Scott and the rest of the show's team who were praised for maintaining the show's intimacy and charm in a much bigger theater.  As for the chances this show has come Tony time, I am waiting on a ruling from the Tony Administration Committee (their final meeting is happening at some point today) as to weather the show qualifies as a musical or as a special event.  If the latter comes to pass, the show will not be eligible for any nominations.  If the show is deemed a musical, then Ms. Scott has a 90% chance of scoring a best actress nomination, and the show overall is decently likely to get nominated for best musical and best orchestrations.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Collected Stories

Manhattan Theatre Club's production of Donald Margulies' Collected Stories has opened at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre on Broadway.  The reviews are relatively positive, especially for Linda Lavin for her leading performance as Ruth Steiner.  Though I'm not convinced she will get a Tony nomination, she's the likeliest shot this show has ... and she may be number six on a list of five nominees.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Enron Opens on Broadway

Enron, a new play by Lucy Prebble about the Enron scandal of ten years ago, opened last night at the Broadhurst Theatre.  The reviews are in and they are decidedly mixed-to-negative.  The New York Times hated it, calling the writing redundant and trite and the production itself predictable, but Variety magazine loved it.  Or, at least, loved the spectacle of it -- their critic didn't really comment as much on the writing or the script so much as the production itself.  We shall see if Goldman Sachs execs will line up for tickets.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010


The revival of August Wilson's 1983 Pulitzer Prize winning play, Fences, starring Denzel Washington and Viola Davis, opened last night at Broadway's Cort Theatre and the reviews are in.  This play is often considered one of Wilson's best and this revival has not disappointed.  The production is, according to  the reviews I've read, stunning and the acting is top notch.  Both Denzel Washington and Viola Davis are said to be riveting and the supporting actors don't detract.  Tony nominations in those three places is seeming more and more likely.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Professional Tony Prognostication

David Sheward of BackStage Magazine has written an article that I think crystalizes the issues involved in the Tony process this year.  I don't agree with 100% of his conclusions, but I do think he gets at the issues quite well.

Nominations for the Outer Critics Circle Awards Announces

Nominees for this year's Outer Critics Circle Awards have been announced.  These nominations, as well as buzz about the remaining few shows to open before the official end of the season (April 29th), will be incorporated into my final set of predictions, of which I will post my last set on or before the night of May 3rd.
Outstanding New Broadway Play
Next Fall
Superior Donuts
Time Stands Still
Outstanding New Broadway Musical
American Idiot
Come Fly Away
Sondheim on Sondheim
Outstanding New Off-Broadway Play
Clybourne Park
The Orphans’ Home Cycle
The Pride
The Temperamentals
Outstanding New Off-Broadway Musical
Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson
The Scottsboro Boys
Tin Pan Alley Rag
Outstanding New Score (Broadway or Off-Broadway)
Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson
The Scottsboro Boys
Outstanding Revival of a Play (Broadway or Off-Broadway)
Lend Me a Tenor
The Royal Family
A View from the Bridge
Outstanding Revival of a Musical (Broadway or Off-Broadway)
La Cage aux Folles
Finian’s Rainbow
A Little Night Music
Promises, Promises
Outstanding Director of a Play
Doug Hughes, The Royal Family
Kenny Leon, Fences
Stanley Tucci, Lend Me a Tenor
Michael Wilson, The Orphans’ Home Cycle
Outstanding Director of a Musical
Christopher Ashley, Memphis
Terry Johnson, La Cage aux Folles
Susan Stroman, The Scottsboro Boys
Alex Timbers, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson
Outstanding Actor in a Play
Bill Heck, The Orphans’ Home Cycle
Jude Law, Hamlet
Liev Schreiber, A View from the Bridge
Christopher Walken, A Behanding in Spokane
Denzel Washington, Fences

Outstanding Actress in a Play
Nina Arianda, Venus in Fur
Laura Benanti, In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play
Viola Davis, Fences
Laura Linney, Time Stands Still
Jan Maxwell, The Royal Family
Outstanding Actor in a Musical
Brandon Victor Dixon, The Scottsboro Boys
Sean Hayes, Promises, Promises
Douglas Hodge, La Cage aux Folles
Chad Kimball, Memphis
Nathan Lane, The Addams Family

Outstanding Actress in a Musical
Kate Baldwin, Finian’s Rainbow
Barbara Cook, Sondheim on Sondheim
Montego Glover, Memphis
Bebe Neuwirth, The Addams Family
Catherine Zeta-Jones, A Little Night Music
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play
Hallie Foote, The Orphans’ Home Cycle
Rosemary Harris, The Royal Family
Marin Ireland, A Lie of the Mind
Jan Maxwell, Lend Me a Tenor
Alicia Silverstone, Time Stands Still
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play
James DeMarse, The Orphans’ Home Cycle
Jon Michael Hill, Superior Donuts
David Pittu, Equivocation
Noah Robbins, Brighton Beach Memoirs
Reg Rogers, The Royal Family
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical
Kevin Chamberlin, The Addams Family
Christopher Fitzgerald, Finian’s Rainbow
Levi Kreis, Million Dollar Quartet
Dick Latessa, Promises, Promises
Bobby Steggert, Ragtime
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical
Carolee Carmello, The Addams Family
Katie Finneran, Promises, Promises
Angela Lansbury, A Little Night Music
Cass Morgan, Memphis
Terri White, Finian’s Rainbow
Outstanding Solo Performance
Jim Brochu, Zero Hour
Carrie Fisher, Wishful Drinking
Judith Ivey, The Lady With All the Answers
Anna Deavere Smith, Let Me Down Easy
John Gassner Award (for American play, preferably by a new playwright)
John Logan, Red
Jon Marans, The Temperamentals
Geoffrey Nauffts, Next Fall
Bruce Norris, Clybourne Park
Outstanding Choreography
Rob Ashford, Promises, Promises
Bill T. Jones, Fela!
Susan Stroman, The Scottsboro Boys
Sergio Trujillo, Memphis

Outstanding Set Design (Play or Musical
John Lee Beatty, The Royal Family
Beowulf Boritt, Sondheim on Sondheim
Phelim McDermott and Julian Crouch, The Addams Family
Donyale Werle, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson

Outstanding Costume Design (Play or Musical)
Jane Greenwood, Present Laughter
Martin Pakledinaz, Lend Me a Tenor
Matthew Wright, La Cage aux Folles
Catherine Zuber, The Royal Family

Outstanding Lighting Design (Play or Musical)
Kevin Adams, American Idiot
Kevin Adams, The Scottsboro Boys
Ken Billington, Sondheim on Sondheim
Justin Townsend, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson