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Backstage Whispers overheard by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 6th May 2013

The big hitters in this year's Tony Award nominations are led by Kinky Boots with 13, including Musical, Book, Score, Billy Porter and Stark Sands - Actor (Musical) and Jerry Mitchell - Director (Musical); Matilda The Musical with 12, including Musical, Book, Score, Bertie Carvel - Actor (Musical) and Matthew Warchus - Director (Musical); and Pippin with 10, including Musical Revival, Patina Miller - Actress (Musical), Diane Paulus - Director (Musical). Heading the plays are Golden Boy with 8, including Play Revival and Bartlett Sher - Director (Play); Lucky Guy with 6, including Play, Tom Hanks - Actor (Play), and George C Wolfe - Director (Play); and Vanya And Sonia And Masha And Spike also with 6, including Play, David Hyde Pierce - Actor (Play), Kristine Nielsen - Actress (Play), and Nicholas Martin - Director (Play). The winners will be announced at the 67th Tony Awards ceremony at Radio City Music Hall on 9th June

It's Official! As previously forecast here, Rocky The Musical, book by Thomas Meehan, lyrics by Lynn Ahrens, music by Stephen Flaherty, adapted from the 1976 boxing movie, directed by Alex Timbers, with boxing choreography by Steven Hoggett and dance choreography by Kelly Devine, which premiered in Hamburg, Germany, last fall, will open at the Winter Garden Theatre in March. The producer is Stage Entertainment.

It's Official! As previously forecast here, Manhattan Theatre Club will stage the premiere of Amanda Peet's The Commons Of Pensacola, about a family weathering a major financial crisis, with Blythe Danner and Sarah Jessica Parker, directed by Lynne Meadow, previewing from October 22nd at New York City Center Stage I, opening on November 21st. New York City Center is located 131 West 55th Street, between 6th and 7th Avenues.

Atlantic Theatre Company will stage the premiere of Rod MacLachlan's Good Television, which exposes the extremity of television reality shows, with Talia Balsam, Jessica Cummings, John Magaro, Kelly McAndrew, Zoe Perry, Luke Robertson, Andrew Stewart-Jones and Ned Van Zandt, directed by Bob Krakower, previewing from May 22nd at Atlantic Stage 2, opening on June 4th. Atlantic Stage 2 is located at 330 West 16th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues.

Signature Theatre has announced that its 2013/2014 season will now begin with Horton Foote's The Old Friends, in which two families confront issues surrounding legacy, loyalty, and the meaning of happiness that have hounded them for generations, with Betty Buckley, Hallie Foote and Lois Smith, directed by previewing from August 20th, opening on September 12th. The Pershing Square Signature Center is located at 480 West 42nd Street, between 9th and 10th Avenues.

Broadway Musicals: From The Pages Of The New York Times by Ben Brantley, recently published by Abrams, features original reviews by the people who can make or break a Broadway show - the New York Times theatre critics. Over the last century the Times's six leading critics, Brooks Atkinson, Howard Taubman, Clive Barnes, Walter Kerr, Frank Rich and Ben Brantley, have offered the most authoritative and influential commentary on musical theatre, and documented the public's love affair with the Broadway musical. This extensive compendium includes their responses to the 150 most important musicals, selected by current chief theatre critic Ben Brantley, accompanied by archival photographs from the productions and select feature coverage. In addition, Brantley gives context to the treasure trove of reviews through a thoughtful introduction and essays that guide the reader through each decade, along with commentary on seminal shows, and the writers, directors, choreographers and actors who brought them to life.

James Wesley's Unbroken Circle, a dark comedy that explores how abuse and family secrets affect every person in each generation differently, with Stacey Bone-Gleason, Lori Hammel, Suzanna Hay, Anika Larsen, Eve Plumb, James Wesley and Juli Wesley, directed by Jason St Little, will preview from May 29th at St Luke's Theatre, opening on June 19th. The producers are Seth Rudetsky and Mary J Davis. St Luke's Theatre is located at 308 West 46th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues.

The Rattlestick Playwrights Theater's premiere production of Jonathan Tolins's Buyer & Cellar, a solo play about a struggling Los Angeles actor who finds himself working in Barbra Streisand's basement, performed by Michael Urie, directed by Stephen Brackett, will transfer to the Barrow Street Theatre from June 18th.

Forthcoming productions at Theatre Row will include Ernest Abuba's DOJOJI: The Man Inside The Bell, a dance-drama reimagining of an ancient legend of eternal love, destiny and transformation, which spans Japan 929 AD to the anime and harajuku worlds, with Kiyo Takami, Toshiji Takeshima, Sachiyo Ito, John Baray, Don Castro, Dinh Q Doan and David Shih, directed by Tisa Chang, choreographed by Sachiyo Ito, previewing from May 18th at the Clurman Theatre, opening on May 23rd, a Pan Asian Repertory Theatre production; and Rhea Leman's Gorilla, in which a company's team building exercise produces unexpected revelations, with Michael Winther, Jennifer Dorr White, L J Ganser, Alfred Gingold, Albert Bendix, Khris Lewin and Tullan Holmqvist, directed by Ari Edelson, previewing from May 24th at the Lion Theatre, opening on May 30th, a Scandinavian American Theater Company production. Theatre Row is located at 410 West 42nd Street, between 9th and 10th Avenues.

The musical Pageant, book and lyrics by Bill Russell and Frank Kelly, music by Albert Evans, originally conceived by Robert Longbottom, about a beauty contest with an all male cast playing the contestants, directed by Matt Lenz, choreographed by Shea Sullivan, will play at New World Stages, from August 9th. New World Stages is located at 340 West 50th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues.

Articulate Theatre Company will stage Jenny Connell Davis's Dragon, which explores the mythical world of love among dragons, alongside the challenge of living with regrets in the world of humans, with Maeve Yore, Joe Roseto, Katie Mack, Daniel Kublick, James Leighton and Tony Ponella, directed by Cat Parker, at the Robert Moss Theatre at 440 Studios, from May 29th. 440 Studios is located at 440 Lafayette Street, between Astor Place and 4th Street.