Friday, September 12, 2014

Directors Double--and Triple--Dip

Scott Ellis is one of three directors
 to have more than one show on Broadway this season
A former editor of mine used to say "Three times and it's a trend." So we officially have a new Broadway trend: directors having more than one show on in the same season. Anna D. Shapiro (August: Osage County, Of Mice and Men) staged the revival of This Is Our Youth which opened last night at the Cort to great reviews (here's my review roundup for and will be helming Larry David's new comedy Fish in the Dark. Youth premiered at Chicago's Steppenwolf Theatre Company earlier this year so Shapiro has time to start planning for the Larry David piece. Pam McKinnon won a Tony for Edward Albee's Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and gives her spin to the playwright's A Delicate Balance. She'll also be directing another revival this spring: Wendy Wasserstein's The Heidi Chronicles. Scott Ellis is staging You Can't Take It With You and The Elephant Man this fall, which played the Williamstown Theatre Festival two summers ago so Ellis had breathing room to work on the Kaufman and Hart classic starring James Earl Jones, Rose Bryne, Elizabeth Ashley and the always-hilarious Kristine Nielsen and Julie Halston. Ellis will be pulling triple duty this season since he'll also be directing Roundabout's revival of On the Twentieth Century opening in January 2015. It will be interesting to see who gets nominated for Tonys and for which show and if anyone will be competing against him or herself.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

B'way Update: Season Starts

Tavi Gevinson and Micahel Cera in This Is Our Youth
Photo: Michael Brosilow
As Cole Porter wrote "Another Openin', Another Show/In Philly, Boston, or Baltimo'" (Did anyone call the Maryland city Baltimo' except for Porter just for a rhyme?). Those lines from Kiss Me Kate were going through my head as I got out of the subway last night and walked to the Cort Theatre for the press preview of This Is Our Youth, the first Broadway show of the fall season which opens tomight. It's always a thrill even though I've been going to Broadway as a critic for 30 years. Recent additions to schedule include Bill Nighy and Carey Mulligan in a revival of Skylight; Airline Highway by Lisa D'Amour whose Detroit was a highlight of the Off-Bway scene two years ago; The Heidi Chronicles with Elisabeth Moss, Jason Biggs, Bryce Pinkham, and Tracee Chimo; Finding Neverland which is scheduled to fly into a Nederlander theatre this coming spring--theoretically without Jennifer Hudson in the sparkly gown she wore during the number from the show at the Tony Awards. Here is an updated rundown of 2014-15 and beyond: