Oscar winner and political activist Susan Sarandon will make her first New York stage appearance in a decade in "Happy Talk," a new play by actor-writer Jesse Eisenberg, which will be produced Off-Broadway by the New Group beginning April 30. Sarandon will play a suburban woman dealing with difficult family issues while also starring in a community theater production of "South Pacific" and trying to find a husband for her mother’s Serbian immigrant home aide (Marin Ireland). Sarandon last performed in the 2009 Broadway revival of "Exit the King."
Shoshana Bean joins ‘Waitress,’ ‘Last Five Years’
Shoshana Bean (the first actress to play Elphaba in “Wicked” after Idina Menzel left the show) will return to Broadway for the first time in more than a decade in the musical “Waitress,” taking over the lead role of Jenna, beginning March 18. In recent months, Jenna has been played by Sara Bareilles (who wrote the score of “Waitress”), Katharine McPhee (“Smash”) and Nicolette Robinson. It was also announced this week that Bean will co-star with Jason Robert Brown in a one-night-only concert of Brown’s two-hander song cycle “The Last Five Years” on Monday night at Second Stage’s Tony Kiser Theater. In a statement, Brown noted that Bean auditioned for the original Off-Broadway production of “The Last Five Years” in 2001.
Princess Diana musical to play New York
A Princess Diana musical, titled “My Princess Diana,” will receive two performances next week at the Joan Weill Center that will benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. According to a news release, “My Princess Diana” observes a struggling female musician who looks back on Princess Diana’s life on the anniversary of her death.
‘Star Wars’ homage musical to play Off-Broadway
An unofficial Off-Broadway musical homage titled “A Musical About Star Wars — Or Why Star Wars Is the Greatest Thing in the Galaxy, Much Better than Star Trek” will play Theater Row beginning March 14. In meta-theatrical style, it will observe two guys at a Blockbuster Video in Staten Island who decide to write a musical celebrating “Star Wars.”
Jeff Daniels at “Network” … Tina Fey at “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child” … Harvey Fierstein at “Fiddler on the Roof" in Yiddish.