It’s good to be the King — again. Brian d’Arcy James, who originated the role of King George III in “Hamilton” when it debuted off-Broadway two years ago but ran off to star in the musical comedy “Something Rotten!,” will play the part on Broadway beginning April 14. King George (who has just a few minutes of stage time) has since been portrayed by Jonathan Groff, Andrew Rannells, Rory O’Malley and Taran Killam.
Loss of NEA would wound New York theater community
How would the elimination of the National Endowment for the Arts (as proposed by President Donald Trump on Thursday in his formal budget request) affect the New York theater community? Major nonprofit organizations may be able to weather the storm, but up-and-coming artists and other small companies will feel the pain. In fall 2016 alone, the NEA awarded grants to countless companies throughout New York City and upstate New York, ranging from New York Stage and Film at Vassar College (which helped develop the musical “Hamilton” among other works) to the Bronx Council on the Arts. The ultimate fate of the NEA will be determined in the weeks ahead as Congress finalizes the 2018 fiscal year budget.
N.J.’s Surflight Theatre to reopen
Two years after shutting down due to a lack of funds, the 65-year-old Surflight Theatre of Beach Haven, New Jersey will reopen this summer. It was recently purchased by Al Parinello, a lead producer of the off-Broadway production of “The Fantasticks.” The new season will begin in June with “Footloose,” followed by other family-friendly musicals including “Hairspray” and “Newsies.” An ice cream parlor next to the theater will reopen too.
Ensler coming back to Off-Broadway
Playwright, performer and activist Eve Ensler, who is best-known as the creator of “The Vagina Monologues,” will return to Off-Broadway next season with “In the Body of the World,” a new solo show adapted from her memoir about how she received a cancer diagnosis while assisting women in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Directed by Diane Paulus (“Waitress”) and produced by Manhattan Theatre Club, it will begin performances at City Center in January.
‘Sondheim Review’ reborn as ‘Everything Sondheim’
“The Sondheim Review,” a quarterly publication for Stephen Sondheim fans that was published from 1994 to 2015, has been reborn as “Everything Sondheim,” which consists of both a website and a print edition. The inaugural issue includes features on Sandra Church (“Gypsy”), Len Cariou (“Sweeney Todd”) and Jim Walton (“Merrily We Roll Along”).
Justin Trudeau and Ivanka Trump at “Come From Away” ... Ian McKellen at “Dear Evan Hansen” ... RuPaul at “The View Upstairs”... Neil Patrick Harris and Mandy Patinkin at “Sunday in the Park with George.”
Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that Eve Ensler's new play will be on Broadway at the Samuel J. Friedman Theater. It will be Off-Broadway at City Center.