If you missed Al Pacino in THE MERCHANT OF VENICE, which closed turning people away on January 9th , you will get another chance to see him. Mr. Pacino, who had to leave the show due to a film commitment, will bring the Shakespeare tragedy back for three more weeks from February 1 through February 20 at the Broadhurst Theater. This will give investors a chance to make a little more money off the hit show that has been playing to capacity. For tickets call 212-239-6200 or online at www.publictheater.org
Producers have come up with some smart strategies to keep shows running longer. RAIN, the Broadway hit tribute to the Beatles, will change theaters. The musical, which closed on January 15th at the Neil Simon Theater owned by the Nederlander Organization, who struck a deal to move show to the Brooks Atkinson Theater, where the musical will reopen on February 8th for 16 more weeks. In an interesting twist the hit musical ROCK OF AGES, which opened in March 2009 and had been playing there closed on January 10, but will re-open at the smaller Helen Hayes theater in March giving investors an opportunity to make more money out of the musical. The show had been selling out on weekends, but was struggling during the week. The 597 seat Helen Hayes will bring down operating costs and keep the show running. So if you have an interest in seeing either of these shows the winter may be a good opportunity.
The Green Day Musical AMERICAN IDIOT has an uncertain future and ticket sales have dropped off during the tourist season, so the future of the show is difficult to determine. However, Billie Joe Armstrong, the lead singer of Green Day has joined the cast of the rock opera in the role of St. Jimmy for performances through February 27, although he will be out for several performances. He beefed up the box office in the fall, when he joined the cast in the same role. Check with the theater on dates, if you would like to see him.
Also of note is Charles Busch’s comedy THE DIVINE SISTER starring the drag legend himself, which is still going strong Off-Broadway at the 199 seat SoHo Playhouse, 15 Vandam Street. The show, which opened in September, is great fun and a chance to see a theater icon in action delivering one-liners with a style to be cherished. For tickets call 212-691-1555 or online at www.SoHoPlayhouse.com PC
Photo: Rob Rich