Week in Review 3.3.17

Encores! Off-Center

The Encores! Off-Center season, which celebrates rarely produced or under appreciated off-Broadway fare, has been announced. First up, July 12-15, is a production of Assassins, the Stephen SondheimJohn Weidman musical about the people who have attempted to assassinate US presidents. That will be directed by Anne Kauffman (Marjorie Prime). Next, Robert O'Hara (Barbecue) will direct Kirsten Childs's Bubbly Black Girl Sheds Her Chameleon Skin, which runs July 26 and 27. Closing out the season is the whimsical Really Rosie, written by Maurice Sendak (book and lyrics) and Carole King (music). The musical in which kids play pretend will run August 2-5. Theater Mania has more.

Playwrights Horizons 2017-2018 Season

The venerable off-Broadway company, which has produced works like the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Flick, has announced its 2017-2018 season, and it includes five world premieres, three plays by women, and one play by a person of color. The season will begin with Sarah Ruhl's play, For Peter Pan on Her 70th Birthday. The Stage Kiss playwright's work comes via Louisville and Berkeley, and will be directed by Les Waters. Previews begin August 18, and Kathleen Chalfant (Wit, Tales from Red Vienna) will star. That will be followed by the five world premieres: The Treasurer, written by Max Posner and directed by David Cromer (Man From Nebraska); Mankind, written and directed by Robert O'Hara (Bootycandy, Barbecue); This Flat Earth, written by Lindsey Ferrentino (Ugly Lies the Bone) and directed by Rebecca Taichman (Indecent); Dance Nation, written by Clare Barron and directed by Lee Sunday Evans; and Log Cabin, written by Jordan Harrison (Marjorie Prime) and directed by Tony Award winner Pam MacKinnon (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?). Visit The New York Times for more, including brief descriptions of each show.

Casting News

  • Tony nominee Will Swenson (Hair, Les Miserables) will join the company of Waitress beginning March 31. He'll play Earl, the abusive husband of the titular waitress, who'll be played by the show's songwriter, Sara Bareilles. Current Earl, William Popp, will play his final performance March 30. Broadway.com has more.

  • Peter Gallagher (On the Twentieth Century) will appear in the upcoming third season of Netflix's Grace and Frankie. The series, which stars grand dames Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, will be back with its third season March 24. Playbill has details.

  • Tony nominee Daniel Breaker (Passing Strange, The Performers) will join the Chicago company of Hamilton as Aaron Burr. Breaker begins performances April 11. Playbill has more.

  • Additional casting for The Whirligig, a new play by Hamish Linklater, has been announced. Noah Bean (Marjorie Prime), Grace Van Patten, Alex Hurt, Jonny Orsini, and Jon DeVries will join the previously announced Norbert Leo Butz, Maura Tierney, and Zosia Mamet. Previews begin May 2, and opening night is set for May 21. The limited engagement is scheduled to conclude June 11. Theater Mania has more.

  • Emmy nominee Josh Charles (Sports Night, The Good Wife) will lead the company of The Antipodes, the latest from Pulitzer Prize winner Annie Baker (The Flick). Previews of the Signature Theatre production begin April 4, with opening night set for April 23. The limited engagement is (now) scheduled to conclude May 21. Broadway.com has the casting announcement.
Rush Tickets

Several Broadway shows announced rush ticket policies this week. The revivals of Sunday in the Park with George and Miss Saigon will offer rush tickets. Playbill has more on their respective rush policies: Sunday and Miss Saigon. In addition, the Broadway bow of Sweat will have a mobile rush, through the Today Tix app; Playbill has more about that. War Paint, starring Patti LuPone and Christine Ebersole, will also have a (traditional) rush policy; fans can visit the Nederlander box office for those tickets. Playbill has details.

In Other News

  • Tony winner Jessie Mueller (Beautiful, Waitress) will perform with the NY Pops in April. She'll join Tony nominees Will Chase (The Mystery of Edwin Drood) and Adrienne Warren (Shuffle Along...) in the April 21 concert celebrating the work of James Taylor and Carole King. Playbill has more.

  • Tony winner Jerry Mitchell (Kinky Boots) and Emmy winner Alex Rudzinski (Grease Live) will direct the upcoming NBC live presentation of Bye Bye Birdie, starring Jennifer Lopez as Rosie. Broadway.com has more.

  • UK and Chicago readers: You'll have the chance to see Rajiv Joseph's exquisite play, Guards at the Taj. The play is set to run at London's Bush Theatre 7 April-20 May. And next year, it will be part of Steppenwolf's season, running May 31, 2018, through July 15. Playbill has more about the London production and the Chicago production.

  • Josh Groban (The Great Comet), Tony winner Cynthia Erivo (The Color Purple), Elizabeth Stanley (On the Town), Santino Fontana (Act One), and more have joined the March 13 Broadway Backwards benefit. Broadway.com has more.

  • Speaking of Josh Groban, you can now listen to him sing "Evermore," the new song from the upcoming live-action Beauty and the Beast. In the movie, the song is sung by the Beast, played by Dan Stevens. Groban was enlisted to record a version for the movie's soundtrack. Listen below.