Fall Broadway News: Celebs, Celebs, and More Celebs

Fall Broadway News. The 2015-2016 Broadway season is up and running and the momentum is shamelessly pedal to metal (hashtag #excellent). The first round of previews—these suckers come in waves, so keep your eye peeled—are especially intense, boasting supernova playwrights, directors, and stars. Here’s the lowdown...

Major League Player

The catalog of big names gracing the Great White Way this fall is pretty staggering:

Oscar and Tony megastar Al Pacino in the Pulitzer Prize-winner David Mamet’s latest, China Doll (directed by Tony winner Pam Mackinnon); Tony winner Lea Salonga (Miss Saigon) and Star Trek’s George Takei in the new musical Allegiance, based on Mr. Takei’s childhood experiences; Tony winner Nina Arianda (Venus in Fur) and Sam Rockwell (The Green Mile) in Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Sam Shepard’s compelling Fool for Love; Broadway icons Cicely Tyson and James Earl Jones in D.L. Coburn’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play, The Gin Game; Oscar-nominee Kiera Knightley in the title role of  Thérèse Raquin alongside Tony winners Judith Light  (Other Desert Cities; Law and Order, SVU) and Gabriel Ebert (Matilda); and Bruce Willis in his Broadway debut opposite Tony nominee Laurie Metcalf (The Other Place; Roseanne) in the new stage version of Stephen King’s thriller, Misery.

Finally there’s the cast of A.R. Gurney’s Sylvia (about a most endearing dog and the man she adopts): Tony winners Matthew Broderick (How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying), Annaleigh Ashford (You Can’t Take It With You),  and Julie White (Little Dog Laughed) come together with Robert Sella, a triple-threat actor in playing three different roles.

Brit Bits

The smattering of high-profile London imports and actors already strutting (or preparing to strut) their pre-opening night stuff include the vintage dramas Old Times by Harold Pinter—directed by Tony-winner Douglas Hodge (La Cage Aux Folles) and starring Tony nominee Eve Best (The Homecoming)—and Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge, a rave review magnet at London’s You Vic with its UK cast. There’s also the tongue-in-cheek newbie comedy King Charles III that scooped up a Best Play Olivier Award and all kinds of kudos for Tim Pigott-Smith (Downton Abby) in the title role.

Beyond Broadway

On the Off-Broadway front, the number of noteworthy names to be reckoned with is also impressive. Take for example Ripcord, the new comedy by Pulitzer Prize winner David Lindsay-Abaire, starring Tony nominee Holland Taylor (Two and a Half Men), Marylouise Burke (Sideways), and Saturday Night Live alum Rachel Dratch. Oh yes, it’s directed by Tony winner/Frasier fave David Hyde Pierce.

Meanwhile Marlo Thomas , whose expansive TV career was launched decades ago with her groundbreaking sitcom That Girl,  returns to the New York stage in two-time Tony-winner Joe DiPietro’s new comedy Clever Little Lies.

Another actress who has been in the entertainment limelight for a good long time is Oscar and Tony nominee Kathleen Turner (Peggy Sue Got Married; Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf). Ms. Turner, who costars in Would You Still Love Me If..., recently picked up the directing reigns as well!

Two other Off-Broadway plays—both comedies—you’ll want to put on your fall radar include The Accidental Pervert, a very funny coming-of-age solo show by Andrew Goffman whose father’s erotic cache of videos triggered some most interesting formative years. And then there’s The Hummingbird’s Tour that begins performance on 10/18.  The cast is dominated by three 60-something siblings catapulted into chaos by an “unexpected guest.”

FYI: Cast Comings & Going

With her Broadway debut delayed nearly a month due to a number of foot stress fractures, Rumer Willis is dancing her way through the role of glam murderess Roxie Hart in Chicago. Her exodus has been extended through November 1st, which gives her extra time to hang with her dad, Bruce, while he gets his Broadway bearings in Misery starting 10/22.

It was late June when Kelsey Grammer left his dual role of producer Charles Frohman and Captain Hook in the musical Finding Neverland, promising to be back “in the fall”.  Undisclosed circumstances are, however, delaying the former Frasier star’s return—although he has stated he will be rejoining the company, which includes Glee heartthrob Matthew Morrison—at some point in the future).

On the plus side, Tony-nominee Terrence Mann, last seen on Broadway playing King Charles in Pippin, will be entering the fray, succeeding Anthony Warlow (Annie) who had been covering for Grammer.

About the Author

City Guide Theatre Editor Griffin Miller moved to New York to pursue an acting/writing career in the 1980s after graduating magna cum laude from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. Since then, she has written for The New York Times, For the Bride, Hotels, and a number of other publications, mostly in the areas of travel and performance arts. An active member of The New York Travel Writers Association, she is also a playwright and award-winning collage artist. In addition, she sits on the board of The Lewis Carroll Society of North America. Griffin is married to Richard Sandomir, a reporter for The New York Times.

Bringing a group to NYC? Free planning services

Let us know what you are looking for and we will try to connect you directly and get discounts.

Enter the code: 3972

More Articles