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amBroadway | Bruce Springsteen will reopen Broadway, ‘King Lear’ gets happy ending and more

Photo by Rob DeMartin

Bruce Springsteen will reopen Broadway

Out of the blue, it was announced Monday that Bruce Springsteen’s acclaimed solo show (“Springsteen on Broadway”), which was the hottest ticket on Broadway a few years ago, will play a limited encore run this summer at the St. James Theatre beginning June 26, which will make it the first show to play Broadway following the pandemic showdown. Tickets go on sale on Thursday, June 10. All audience members will need to provide proof of vaccination.

‘King Lear’ gets a happy ending

Have you ever wished that Cordelia lived on and got married at the end of “King Lear”? NY Classical Theatre, which stages free outdoor productions of classic plays each summer, will present Nahum Tate’s notorious “happy ending” version of “King Lear” at four public parks in Manhattan and Brooklyn from June 24 to Aug. 8.” Believe it or not, this was the most popular version of the Shakespeare tragedy from 1681 to 1838.

‘Lehman Trilogy’ reconfirmed with new cast member

“The Lehman Trilogy,” the multi-part financial drama charting the Lehman brothers and their lineage from 1844 to 2008, which was in previews at Broadway’s Nederlander Theatre at the time of the shutdown, will resume previews on Sept. 25 and officially open on Oct. 14. The cast will be comprised of Simon Russell Beale, Adam Godley and Adrian Lester, who is taking over for Ben Miles. Scott Rudin (who has come under fire in recent weeks following allegations of workplace harassment) is no longer involved in the production as a lead producer.

Audience capacity limited for Shakespeare in the Park

In order to allow for the social distancing NY State guidelines currently require for small and medium performing arts spaces, the Public Theater plans to sharply limit attendance at this summer’s Shakespeare in the Park production of “Merry Wives” (a contemporary adaptation of the Shakespeare comedy by Jocelyn Bioh that is set in South Harlem among West African immigrants) to 428 seats (25 percent of the Delacorte Theatre’s capacity). Unlike past years, all free tickets will be distributed exclusively through a digital lottery. The production runs from July 6 through Sept. 18.

Jailed producer returns to Broadway

“Paradise Square,” a new musical about ethnic and racial tensions in Lower Manhattan’s Five Points neighborhood during the Civil War, will open at Broadway’s Barrymore Theatre in March of next year. The most noteworthy thing about “Paradise Square” may be the fact that it is being produced by Garth Drabinsky, who produced big-budget spectacles on Broadway in the 1990s (including “Show Boat” and “Ragtime”), was subsequently found to have engaged in massive financial fraud and eventually served prison time in Canada. This is all detailed in the 2012 documentary “Show Stopper: The Theatrical Life of Garth Drabinsky.”

‘Batman’ fan memoir to be adapted for stage

Superheroes have not had much luck on Broadway (remember “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark”?). Nevertheless, a new show inspired by “Batman” is currently in development. “Darknights and Daydreams,” a play by Michael Uslan based on his memoir “The Boy Who Loved Batman,” is looking to play Broadway in two years’ time. Uslan is the originator and executive producer of the modern “Batman” movie franchise, which goes from 1989’s “Batman” all the way to 2022’s “The Batman.”

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