Around The Town

‘Town’ and ‘Out’ Set for B’way 2021

By: David Sheward

July 3, 2020: Announcements continue for the (projected) Broadway reopening in 2021. The Broadway League announced on Monday, refunds and exchanges will be granted up until Jan. 3 of next year. Broadway and Off-Broadway theaters have been closed since March 12 due to the corona virus pandemic. Several productions announced previews and openings beginning in March. The League also said there would be “rolling” openings in early 2021 but so far, the earliest show with a specific date is Tracey Letts’ The Minutes which begins previews at the Cort Theater on March 1.

Patrick J. Adams, Jesse Williams and Jesse Tyler Ferguson in “Take Me Out”. Credit: Catherine Wessel

By: David Sheward

July 3, 2020: Announcements continue for the (projected) Broadway reopening in 2021. The Broadway League announced on Monday, refunds and exchanges will be granted up until Jan. 3 of next year. Broadway and Off-Broadway theaters have been closed since March 12 due to the corona virus pandemic. Several productions announced previews and openings beginning in March. The League also said there would be “rolling” openings in early 2021 but so far, the earliest show with a specific date is Tracey Letts’ The Minutes which begins previews at the Cort Theater on March 1.

Second Stage’s revival of Take Me Out, Richard Greenberg’s 2002 play imagining an openly gay major league baseball player who comes out during a championship season, will begin previews at the Helen Hayes Theater on March 22 with an opening set for April 22. The production was originally set to throw out its first pitch on April 21 of this year. The cast is headed by Jesse Williams (Grey’s Anatomy), Patrick J. Adams (Suits), and Drama Desk winner Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family). Scott Ellis (Tootsie, She Loves Me) directs. The original production opened at London’s Donmar Warehouse in 2002 and then transferred to Public Theater Off-Broadway. The subsequent Broadway transfer won the 2003 Tony Award for Best Play and Best Featured Actor for Denis O’Hare.

Dustin Hoffman

Scott Rudin also announced he will be producing a revival of Thornton Wilder’s classic drama Our Town to star two-time Oscar winner Dustin Hoffman, to be directed by Tony winner Barlett Sher (To Kill a Mockingbird, South Pacific), sometime in 2021. Hoffman has not appeared on Broadway since 1989 when he played Shylock in a revival of The Merchant of Venice. Prior to that he starred as Willy Loman in a 1984 revival of Death of a Salesman and played the title role in Jimmy Shine in 1968. Off-Broadway he won an Obie Award for Journey of the Fifth Horse and a Drama Desk and Theatre World Award for Eh? In 2017, Hoffman was the subject of several accusations of sexual harassment. Anna Graham Hunter wrote an essay in The Hollywood Reporter stating the actor harassed her when she was a 17-year-old intern on the set of the TV-movie version of Death of a Salesman. Hoffman apologized in a letter to the publication. There were other accusations which he has either denied or not commented on.

Our Town premiered on Broadway in 1938 and won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. The story of everyday lives in a small New Hampshire town has gone on to become a favorite of high-school and community theaters to this day. There have been four subsequent Broadway productions—1944 at City Center with Montgomery Clift as George; 1969 with Henry Fonda as the Stage Manager; 1988 starring Spalding Gray; and 2002 with Paul Newman. An Off-Broadway production in 2009 directed by and starring David Cromer went on to become the longest-running version of the play, racking up 644 performances. The 1940 film version starred William Holden and Martha Scott and the script was changed to provide a happy ending. A 1977 TV version featured Hal Holbrook, Robbie Benson, and Glynis O’Connor. Frank Sinatra headlined a 1955 TV musical version of the play with Newman and Eva Marie Saint. A later musical version by Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt called Grovers’ Corners was workshopped but never came to Broadway. Ned Rorem’s operatic version had performances in 2006 and a ballet set to the music of Aaron Copeland has been performed by American Repertory Ballet.

Tentative Broadway/Off-Broadway Schedule for 2021-22

March 15–The Minutes (Cort) (previews March 1)

April 13–Plaza Suite (Hudson) (previews March 19)

April 14–American Buffalo (Circle in the Square) (previews March 22)

Paul Newman in the 2002 revival of Our Town

April 15–MJ (Neil Simon) (previews March 8)

April 22–Take Me Out (Second Stage/Hayes) (previews begin March 22)

May 20–The Music Man (Winter Garden) (previews April 7)

Spring 2021–Flying Over Sunset (LCT/Vivian Beaumont)

Intimate Apparel (LCT/Mitzi Newhouse)

1776 (Roundabout/American Airlines)

Caroline or Change (Roundabout/Studio 54)

…what the end will be (Roundabout/Laura Pels)

Exception to the Rule (Roundabout/Steinberg Center)

Fall 2021–Birthday Candles (Roundabout/American Airlines)

Winter 2021-22–Trouble in Mind (Roundabout/American Airlines)

2021–Our Town

Future–Death of a Salesman; K-pop the Broadway Musical; The Nanny; The Normal Heart/The Destiny of Me; Smash; Some Like It Hot; Soul Train

Unopened Productions from 2019-20 with no new dates yet

Company

Diana

How I Learned to Drive

The Lehman Trilogy

Mrs. Doubtfire

Sing Street

Six

Long-Running Shows and Opened 2019-20 Shows 

Ain’t Too Proud

Aladdin

The Book of Mormon

Chicago

Come from Away

Dear Evan Hansen

Girl from the North Country

Hadestown

Hamilton

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Jagged Little Pill

The Lion King

Mean Girls

Moulin Rouge

Phantom of the Opera

Tina: The Tina Turner Musical

To Kill a Mockingbird

West Side Story

Wicked

Originally Posted on The David Desk 11 on July 2, 2020