Six-time Tony winner Audra McDonald, who surprisingly did not receive a Tony nomination this week for her performance in “Shuffle Along,” won’t have to wait long for her next award. She will be honored next Thursday by New Dramatists (which supports rising playwrights) at its annual spring luncheon at the New York Marriott Marquis. Every year, the event draws an unusually large number of Tony nominees and industry professionals.
‘Disaster!’ closing on Sunday
Just hours after it received just a single Tony nomination, the new musical “Disaster!” waived the white flag and announced that it will close this Sunday. Although only intended to be a limited run, the campy musical (which uses disco hits and parodies 1970s disaster flicks) was still expected to last through July 3 at the Nederlander Theatre, which will next be occupied by the return engagement of “Motown.” On social media, Seth Rudetsky (who wrote the show’s book and is in the cast) wrote that “Disaster!” will soon be licensed for future productions.
Drama Desk causes uproar over best book in a musical
The Drama Desk Award nominators caused a scandal of sorts by opting to not nominate any new musicals in the category of best book of a musical. In an open letter, playwright and Dramatists Guild president Doug Wright wrote that “musical book writers deserve at least some of the credit for the year’s success, and we’re painfully aggrieved that it’s being denied to them.” In response, the category was reinstated, with nominations given to “Daddy Long Legs,” “First Daughter Suite” and “Waitress.”
Joe Mantello to join Sally Field in ‘Glass Menagerie’
Actor turned director Joe Mantello (who recently staged “The Humans” and “Blackbird”) will return to acting next season in a revival of Tennessee Williams’ “The Glass Menagerie” starring Sally Fields, directed by Sam Gold and produced by Scott Rudin, as reported by Playbill.com. “The Glass Menagerie” was seen on Broadway just two years ago with Zachary Quinto and Cherry Jones.
Paper Mill Playhouse to get Tony Award
The day before the Tony nominations were unveiled, it was quietly announced that New Jersey’s Paper Mill Playhouse will receive this year’s Regional Theater Tony Award. Papermill, which for decades had been mainly a place to see revivals of classic musicals, has been rejuvenated in recent years by premiering new musicals with Broadway aspirations such as “Newsies,” “Honeymoon in Vegas,” “A Bronx Tale” and “Bandstand.”
Bono at “Eclipsed”…Huey Lewis at “American Pyscho”…Jessica Chastain and Sarah Paulson at “Long Day’s Journey Into Night”…Fantasia Barrino at “The Color Purple”…Jenna Fischer at “Dry Powder” at the Public Theater.