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Issue #142: December 1, 2004


  • Best known for his role on the television sitcom Spin City, Richard Kind will jump into the role of Max Bialystock in The Producers earlier than expected.  Kind begins his stint on December 21 while Brad Oscar, currently in the role, heads to London in January to take over for Nathan Lane.  Lane is returning for pre-production of the film version of the Tony-winning musical, which also includes his Broadway co-star Matthew Broderick.  Also in the film will be Saturday Night Live alum Will Ferrell and to add additional dazzle, Nicole Kidman.
  • Rumours are flying that Tony award winner Ben Vereen is being wooed to be the next Wizard of Oz in the Broadway production of Wicked.  Just rumours, the current Wiz is apparently signed on until at least mid 2005.

Broadway On The Road

  • The cast for the Toronto engagement and tour launch of Wicked was announced recently.  Emmy winner Carol Kane (Taxi) plays Madam Morrible, the Headmistress of Shiz University and you'll find Tony-nominated actor David Garrison in the role of the Wizard of Oz.  This production will be under the direction of the Broadway and Tony award winning director Joe Montello. The first national tour opens at The Canon Theatre on March 8 for a seven-week run.

London's West End

  • If you're heading to London you can catch the recent revival of the Broadway musical Grand Hotel at the Donmar Warehouse.  Originally staged in New York in 1989, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio stars in this recent production, which runs until February 12.

Curtain Call

  • Following the Broadway opening of Michael Frayn's Democracy, musical theatre maestro Cy Coleman died of heart failure on November 18The composer had just received that week a pair of honours. the Johnny Mercer Foundation saluted him in New York with a gala which included performances by Tony Bennett, Chita Rivera and Glenn Close.  In Philadelphia the Barrymore Awards were being handed out and Coleman was given the Best Original Score for his last produced work, The Great Ostovsky, which debuted there last spring.  The Tony, Emmy and Grammy award winner will be remembered for many Broadway musicals including Sweet Charity, City of Angels, The Will Rogers Follies, Seesaw and On The Twentieth Century.  He wrote some of the greatest pop standards including Witchcraft, The Best is Yet to Come and Firefly, which were recorded by the likes of Peggy Lee, Nat King Cole and Tony Bennett.  And so another legend passes..

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