It’s been a week of spooky goings on around the theater world this week, so let’s check up on the stories that went bump (and grind) in the night.
- Have you ever wanted to veer away from a film’s main plot and follow a minor character as they disappear out of the protagonist’s life? That’s the experience you get from Woodshed Collective’s The Tenant, a new site-specific work which opened Wednesday night. Based on the same novella that inspired the Roman Polanski film, the multiple, simultaneous story lines tumble, screech and race around a Parisian apartment building (actually, the very moody West Park Presbyterian Church parish house) as a new guy in town is slowly driven insane by his decidedly odd neighbors. While the scrappy production may lack truly detailed physical design and coherent narrative drive, there is much fun to be had making split second decisions to follow an intriguing character, opening doors to random scenes in progress, or simply hiding in a room until something truly unsettling stumbles in after you. (Among the sights that will stick with me is a disturbing mother/daughter battle between Judith Greentree & Jocelyn Kuritsky and the closet popping transformation of inspired leading man Michael Crane.) Tickets are free though currently sold out (other than for a pricey benefit performance) but there is a nightly waiting list for cancelations.
- Speaking of creepy (and kooky, mysterious, and spooky), producers of the Broadway production of The Addams Family made a snap (snap) judgement and announced they will be closing the musical at the end of the year. Never fear, though, a national tour is slated to head out on the road in September.
Just when you thought Broadway was safe from spooks and scares, the musical adaptation of Ghost has officially been slated for a Broadway run in spring of 2012. The romantic tale of life and love (and sexy pottery) after death is currently running in London; you can get a preview of the score here.
- A true legend, Judy Garland, is being brought back to life on Broadway in the Olivier Award-winning play End of the Rainbow. The acclaimed London star Tracie Bennett will travel with the show across the pond, first to the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis and finally to New York March 19, 2012.
- If Judy isn’t enough for you, actressexuals (like The Film Experience’s Nathaniel) might want to note two tasty bits of Off-Broadway casting announced this week. Next month, Oscar and Emmy winner Christine Lahti will be appearing in the premiere of Adam Rapp’s Dreams of Flying Dreams of Falling at the Atlantic and Sue Snell/Bab’s beloved/Oscar-nominee Amy Irving will appear in We Live Here by Zoe Kazan at Manhattan Theater Club.
- Finally, we sadly must note the passing of the legendary Price Berkley, founder of the Theatrical Index. He turned his love of theater into an indispensable industry newsletter that every power broker on Broadway consulted. As Rick Miramontez, President of the theatrical PR firm O&M Co, put it, “Price revolutionized the way show business gets done. To paraphrase the great Nancy Coyne, all you need for success in this town is a telephone, a sharpened #2 pencil, and a Theatrical Index.”