Around The Town

Broadway Update

B’way Update: Skeleton and Paradise Shift Dates, Joan Copeland Dies

By: David Sheward

January 5, 2022: COVID and Omicron are still necessitating changes on Broadway. Skeleton Crew, Dominique Morriseau’s drama presented by Manhattan Theater Club at the Samuel J. Friedman starring Phylicia Rashad, has suspended all performances through Jan. 9 due to breakthrough COVID cases in the company. The opening, originally scheduled for Jan. 19 will be postponed to a later date to be announced.

Joaquina Kalukango, Nathaniel Stampley, Chilina Kennedy & the Chicago company of “Paradise Square.” Photo: Kevin Berne

B’way Update: Skeleton and Paradise Shift Dates, Joan Copeland Dies

By: David Sheward

January 5, 2022: COVID and Omicron are still necessitating changes on Broadway. Skeleton Crew, Dominique Morriseau’s drama presented by Manhattan Theater Club at the Samuel J. Friedman starring Phylicia Rashad, has suspended all performances through Jan. 9 due to breakthrough COVID cases in the company. The opening, originally scheduled for Jan. 19 will be postponed to a later date to be announced.

Paradise Square, the new musical about the owner and multi-racial customers of a tavern in NYC’s Five Points neighborhood during the Civil War, has also pushed back its opening dates. The show will now begin previews at the Barrymore Theater on March 15 in advance of an April 3 opening (The original opening was set for March 20).

“During Christmas week, when there were over 560,000 positive daily cases in the US, over 70,000 positive daily cases in NYC and scientists suggested that the virus had yet to peak, we grew deeply concerned for the ongoing safety of our cast, crew and creative team, who were scheduled to begin Broadway rehearsals this month,” commented producer Garth H. Drabinsky. “We hope that a later start date for rehearsals and performances after the current wave is predicted to subside will better protect our company, audience and theatre community.” 

Also, Flying Over Sunset will be closing three weeks earlier than its original limited engagement. The musical imagining Cary Grant, Clare Booth Luce and Aldous Huxley taking LSD together running at Lincoln Center’s Vivian Beaumont, will end its run on Jan. 16 instead of Feb. 6.

Joan Copeland

In other news, Broadway veteran Joan Copeland, the sister of playwright Arthur Miller, has passed away at 99. Copeland played the tap-dancing mother in Wendy Wasserstein’s long-running Off-Broadway comedy Isn’t It Romantic? while I was ushering for the show at the Lucille Lortel Theater. She was a delightful presence, giving a consistently warm and generous performance with a revolving cast including Alma Cuervo and Robin Bartlett as her daughter, Janie. She was also magnificently maternal and loving in Joe DiPietro’s Over the River and Through the Woods and won an Obie as the calculating mother of a conflicted daughter in Richard Greenberg’s The American Plan. She also won a Drama Desk Award (over Elizabeth Taylor in The Little Foxes) playing a version of her own mother in her brother’s play The American Clock. Joan will also be remembered as a stern judge on early episodes of Law & Order. 

2021-22 Broadway/Off-Broadway Schedule

TBA–Skeleton Crew (MTC/Samuel J. Friedman)

Jan. 23–Long Day’s Journey Into Night (Audible Theater/Minetta Lane)

Jan. 27–Intimate Apparel (LCT/Mitzi Newhouse)

Jan. 31–Tambo and Bones (Playwrights Horizons)

Feb. 1–MJ: The Michael Jackson Musical (Neil Simon); Prayer for the French Republic (MTC/City Center)

Feb. 3–English (Atlantic Theater Company); Sandblasted (Vineyard)

Feb. 5–The Merchant of Venice (TFANA/Polonksy Shakespeare Center)

Feb. 10–The Music Man (Winter Garden)

Feb. 14–Sleep No More (McKittrick Hotel)

Feb. 22–Black No More (The New Group)

March 17–The Little Prince (Broadway)

March 24–for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf (Booth)

March 28–Plaza Suite (Hudson)

March 31–Mr. Saturday Night (Nederlander)

April 3–Paradise Square (Barrymore)

April 4–Take Me Out (Second Stage/Hayes)

April 6–Suffs (Public Theater)

April 7–The Minutes (Studio 54)

April 8–Beetlejuice (Marriott Marquis)

April 10–Birthday Candles (Roundabout/AA)

April 13–Harmony (Museum of Jewish Heritage)

April 14–American Buffalo (Circle In the Square); To My Girls (Second Stage/Kiser)

April 19–How I Learned to Drive (MTC/Samuel J. Friedman)

April 23–Wedding Band (TFANA/Polonsky Shakespeare Center)

April 24–Funny Girl (August Wilson)

April 25–The Skin of Our Teeth (LTC/Vivian Beaumont)

April 28–Macbeth (Longacre)

April 30–The Bedwetter (Atlantic Theater Company)

May 17–Golden Shield (MTC/City Center)

Fall 2022

1776 (Roundabout/AA)

Between Riverside and Crazy (Second Stage/Hayes)

2022

Ain’t Supposed to Die a Natural Death, The Ohio State Murders, The Piano Lesson

2022-23

Dancin’, Pal Joey, Square One

2023 and Beyond

Game of Thrones, The Great Gatsby

Future–Our Town; 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; A Strange Loop; The Who’s Tommy

2021-22 Broadway Season Breakdown:

New Plays

Birthday Candles

Chicken and Biscuits

Clyde’s

Dana H. (transfer from Off-Broadway)

Is This A Room (transfer from Off-Broadway)

The Lehman Trilogy (transfer from Off-Broadway)

The Minutes

Pass Over (previously presented Off-Broadway)

Skeleton Crew (previously presented Off-Broadway in a different production)

Thoughts of a Colored Man

Play Revivals

American Buffalo

for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf

How I Learned to Drive

Lackawanna Blues (previously produced Off-Broadway)

Macbeth

Plaza Suite

The Skin of Our Teeth

Slave Play (return engagement)

Take Me Out

Trouble in Mind

New Musicals

Diana

Flying Over Sunset

The Little Prince

Mr. Saturday Night

Mrs. Doubtfire

Paradise Square

Six

Musical Revivals

Beetlejuice (return engagement)

Caroline or Change

Company

Funny Girl 

Waitress (return engagement)

Specialties

Bruce Springsteen on Broadway (return engagement)

David Bryne’s American Utopia (return engagement)

Freestyle Love Supreme (return engagement)

Originally Posted on The David Desk 2 on January 4, 2022