That the revival of “Guys and Dolls” that opened at Broadway’s Nederlander Theater reflects merely the conventional and uninspired should come as no
surprise. Frank Loesser’s 1950 musical comedy ranks as one of the greatest in the American theatrical canon. So it brings a well-prepared audience and one with haughty expectations. A notorious gambler himself, Frank Sinatra made a hit of “Luck Be A Lady”, popularizing it with his signature smoothness. In the show’s 1992 Broadway revival, Nathan Lane brought such bold physical comedy to the role of Nathan Detroit that New York Times theater critic Frank Rich compared him to a young Jackie Gleason.
“All the world’s a stage”, so said Shakespeare. But this season in New York City, all the world’s a circus. Amidst the multitude of goings on for children, there are a couple of new and revised circus shows of note.
Liza Minnelli is in rare form and performing an audacious miracle at the Palace Theater with her brand new show that runs well over two hours and includes many of her memorable standards including “Cabaret.” The charismatic three time Tony Award winning superstar “razzle dazzled” the opening night audience with a confident, gritty and of often magical display of showmanship.
Daniel Radcliffe, the star of the five "Harry Potter" films, acquits himself admirably with a confident Broadway debut as the disturbed adolescent Alan Strang at the core of Peter Shaffer’s 1973 psychodrama Equus. The revival directed by Thea Sharrock debuted at London’s National Theatre earlier this year with the same theatrically impressive design team. John Napier, set and costume designer, merely takes a fresh look as his original 1970’s sketches, but the staging is nonetheless dazzling with effectively haunting lighting and sound by David Hersey and Gregory Clarke respectively.
The East Hampton Grace Estate overlooking the Northwest Harbor with its magnificent sunsets is a secluded tract of land totaling nearly 300 acres bordering both Cedar Point Park and a 517 acre nature preserve. This is about as far as one can get from civilization in East Hampton, and there are only 30 homes there situated in relative isolation about 10 miles from the Village and the ocean beaches. But this is where you will find Broadway producers, Stewart F. Lane and his lovely wife Bonnie Comley, every summer for the past eight years.
The eternally youthful multi-talented singer, dancer, cabaret entertainer has left us. Renowned as the self proclaimed "sex kitten" in a career that spanned five decades, the actress was active as recently as last September where she performed at Cafe Carlyle. Her accomplishments cover every facet of the entertainment industry, but she may be best know to millions as the Cat Woman of the long running "Batman" television series. Orson Wells called her "the most exciting woman in the world." And the world will be a little less exciting now that she’s gone.
Broadway Backwards 4 benefiting the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center proved once again to be the most awesome star studded gender – reversed concert extravaganza event of the year. Bravo! Photography: Barry Gordin "The After Party"
In anticipation of the Guild Hall Annual Lifetime Achievement Awards Richard and Renee Steinberg hosted a intimate party at the Core culb on East 55th Street. Guild Hall, the cultural center of East Hampton, will present the awards to Jennifer Bartlett, Candice Bergen, Ken Auletta and Donald Zucker in a lavish ceremony to be held March 1 at Cipriani, where Roy Furman, President of the Academy will do the honors and Marshall Brickman will emcee.
Mary-Louise Parker cuts a handsome figrue as the trapped herione, Hedda Gabler, in the Roundabout Theater Company’s odd production of Ibsen’s classic character study. Christopher Shinn’s new adaptation is more direct and the evening helmed by Ian Rickson has an aggressive contemporary tone that is uneven and obvious.
The advance buzz has been overwhelming, and we have been inundated with questions about the new Broadway musical Spamalot. Did you like it? Did they do a good job adapting it for the stage? Is it all that? Did you have to see the movie to follow it? Yes, yes, yes, and no with superlatives all around for the entire team.
Spring Awakening, which was an acclaimed hit last summer at the Atlantic Theatre Company, is now a stunning triumph on Broadway, and the American musical may never be the same again. Duncan Sheik has created a fantastic rock score and Steven Sater has provided equally impressive lyrics as well as a faithfully bold adaptation of the 1891 German Expressionist play by Frank Wedekind that the musical is based on.
The Disney production of Mary Poppins on Broadway plus Cameron Mackintosh equals supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. Based on the classic 1964 Disney movie that won an Oscar for Julie Andrews in the title role, the musical that has been imported from London’s West End draws much of its dark magic from P.L. Travers’ original novel and is even better on Broadway. Here is a stylish vibrant family entertainment that promises to please not only the children but the adults as well.