So looking forward to the brilliant Louis Pitre performance at the Roxy Theatre in Owen Sound on Friday, October 12th. I have fond memories of working with her on the television series Star Portraits, however it is her stage performances that she is best known. Who can forget her as Fontine in the first Toronto engagement of Les Miserables. Then of course her Tony nominated performance in Mamma Mia! a role she originated in Toronto before heading to Broadway. The Owen Sound community is in for a spectacular night of entertainment.
In a twist of fate, the revival of Gore Vidal‘s political play The Best Man saw the author pass away at 86 during the run. Currently at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theater until September 9, the play boasts a who’s who cast including; Cybill Shepherd, John Stamos, Kristin Davis, Elizabeth Ashley, James Earl Jones and John Larroquette.
After a 13 month run from July 2009 to August 2010, the Australian company of Jersey Boys heads back to Melbourne’s Princess Theatre for a limited 14 week run beginning January 10. Currently in Brisbane for the summer the boys head to Adelaide for a short run beginning October 26.
July 12 marks the last opening night for Dancap Productions…ending a five-year ride that saw great highlights as well as lows. Once again the Toronto commercial theatre landscape has shrunk…which doesn’t bode well since healthy competition keeps everyone on their toes. Theatre is one of those businesses that can see great success one day then bankruptcy the next. It is a credit to Aubrey Dan that he hung in there this long….through some very tough times.
It was a pleasure working on Dancap’s first foray into the marketplace, Jersey Boys. A terrific team was behind bringing this production to Toronto audiences and proved to be one of my career highlights. Wishing Dan the best in whatever his next chapter is….and thanks for the memories.
This fall will see the return to Broadway by veteran actor Al Pacino in the 30th anniversary of David Mamet’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play Glengarry Glen Ross. In the 1992 film version Pacino played Ricky Roma, however in this incarnation he will play the role of Shelly Levene. Previews begin October 16 at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre with the opening scheduled for November 11.
Jamie Hendry Productions, the producer of Legally Blonde the Musical, is one of the producers behind Let It Be, which is due to hit the Prince of Wales Theatre in London on September 14. The premiere of this theatrical production will mark the 50th anniversary of the debut of the Beatles single Love Me Do which was released in Britain in October 1962. The engagement is limited to January 19, 2013 which means, if successful, it will probably appear in North America soon after.
As expected, no sooner did the stunning War Horse production open, the producer announced its stay at the Princess of Wales Theatre is extended until September 30. Although I’ve only seen a dress rehearsal (seeing the show on April4)I knew it was going to be a hit with critics and audiences alike…and it is! It is a stunning production…what theatre is all about. Thrilled it’s sticking around…and who knows…maybe even beyond September 30th.
I had the opportunity to see the current production of The Blue Dragon at the Royal Alexandra Theatre in Toronto recently…and what a delightful surprise. Having no expectations entering the theatre the play transported the audience, as theatre should, to a land far away. The clever set gave the feeling of more than three characters on stage throughout the almost two hour performance. The creators Marie Michaud and Robert Lepage have delivered one of the finest theatrical experiences in recent memory. The Blue Dragon continues until February 19th. Let’s hope this piece reaches beyond a Canadian audience.
Following on the heals of the Jersey Boys movie announcement, we hear there is an adaptation of the 1987 Tony Award winning musical Into The Woods heading to the big screen. This project will be directed by Rob Marshall, who has a track record for transitioning musical theatre pieces to film. He is responsible for the films Nine and Chicago, which won the 2002 Oscar for best picture.
In the works is the next stage to screen project. Look for Jersey Boys to hit movie screens in the future. The story of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, which won the 2006 Tony Award for best musical, is in the hands of John Logan, writer of Martin Scorsese’s latest hit Hugo. Frankie Valli has signed on to executive produce the film.