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amBroadway: ‘American Utopia’ to return to Broadway, new season at the Metropolitan Opera and more

"American Utopia" will make its return to Broadway. (Photo: Matthew Murphy)

‘American Utopia’ will return to Broadway

“American Utopia,” David Byrne’s acclaimed mega-concert, will return to Broadway in September for an additional 17 weeks at the Hudson Theatre. The announcement was made following the show’s final performance on Sunday. “It’s become obvious to us in the band, the crew and the producer team that audiences want, dare I say need? To see this show,” Byrne said in a statement. A film version of “American Utopia” directed by Spike Lee will be released later this year. 

Met unveils its next season

The Metropolitan Opera will open its 2020-21 season with a new production of Verdi’s “Aida” directed by Michael Mayer (“Spring Awakening”) and starring Anna Netrebko. Ivo van Hove (“West Side Story”) will direct both Mozart’s “Don Giovanni” and the contemporary opera “Dead Man Walking.” In a surprise move, the company will introduce a new staging of “Die Zauberflöte” (i.e. “The Magic Flute”) directed by Simon McBurney, which leaves the future of Julie Taymor’s popular production in question. The new season will extend into June and include more Sunday matinees and a break in performances in February. 

‘American Buffalo’ introduces its own buffalo

The title of David Mamet’s 1977 drama “American Buffalo” (which is being revived on Broadway with Laurence Fishburne, Sam Rockwell and Darren Criss) refers to a potentially valuable American Buffalo Nickel coin that its characters plan to steal. Nevertheless, a 9’ x 5’, 90-pound replica of a full-size buffalo by the name of “Nickel” will be on hand to greet audience members in the lobby of the Circle in the Square Theatre. In other news, on Thurs. Feb 20, a limited number of discounted tickets will be made available that reflect the ticket prices of earlier productions of the play.

‘Frozen’ to incorporate national tour changes

Nothing is ever “Frozen” on Broadway apparently. This week, changes were incorporated to the two-year-old Broadway production of Disney’s “Frozen” that reflect the national touring production, as reported by Broadway News. The changes include adding a new song for Elsa and Anna (“I Can’t Lose You”), eliminating one of Anna’s songs (“True Love”) and rehauling the opening sequence of the second act (“Hygge”). On Tuesday night, Ciara Renée and McKenzie Kurtz took over as Elsa and Anna respectively. 

‘The Crucible’ to return Off-Broadway

An Off-Broadway revival of Arthur Miller’s “The Crucible” by the experimental-meets-classical company Bedlam, which played the East Village earlier this season, will receive an encore four-week run at the Connelly Theater beginning March 27. Prior Bedlam productions include a scaled-down “Saint Joan,” a gliding “Sense and Sensibility” and the mashup “Uncle Romeo Vanya Juliet.”

Spotted…

Paul McCartney at “American Utopia”…Tom Selleck at “Harry Townsend’s Last Stand.”

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