Friday, March 02, 2007

Will Encores Mount All-Star Gypsy?

Will Encores Mount All-Star Gypsy?

For anyone who witnessed last summer's bravura performance by Patti LuPone in Gypsy at Ravinia Festival, you know what an event it was. And you also know that you have bragging rights to something truly special. Those nights have long since become fabled.

So much so that many are clinging to the hope that they may have their opportunity to see the woman who was born to play the role of Mama yet again. Will New York City Center Encores! provide the vehicle for a similar staging near Broadway?

If the nugget found in this morning's Playbill "Diva Talk" interview with Jessica Boevers Bogart, who portrayed Gypsy last summer, is any indication, the answer appears to be "yes."

When asked whether she was going to take part in the "rumored" production at Encores! "this summer" alongside LuPone, she said:

I hear they're looking for celebrities, which I'm totally bummed about because I would love to do it. I hope maybe I'll get really lucky and all of those fancy people will say no....Even better, if Scarlett Johansson says yes and the day before she backs out, and they call me, desperate.

Of course, Ravinia's "concert" staging of Gypsy dovetails nicely with the Encores! format that's been around since 1994. Stay tuned for more information on what would likely be the theatrical event of the summer for New York.

This is Steve On Broadway (SOB).

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At 02 March, 2007, Blogger Mondschein said...

It seems to me the Encores! mission is to bring musicals which DON'T get produced often, either because the shows are perhaps forgotten or expensive to produce. How many times has Gypsy been performed, let alone revived on Broadway? There have been a couple of successful (or semi-successful) transfers to commercial runs, most notably the still-running "all-star" vehicle, "Chicago" as well as "Wonderful Town" and the soon-to-close "Apple Tree."

I'd much rather see them stage something more obscure or old like "Knickerbocker Holiday" or "Roberta." Those are examples of shows I've heard of and know a song or two, but don't really know the source.

At 02 March, 2007, Blogger Steve On Broadway (SOB) said...

In reading Encores! "History" page, it simply states:

"Since 1994, New York City has been serenaded by New York City Center's Encores!, a celebration of the works of America's most important composers and lyricists. Each season of Encores! gives three glorious scores the chance to be heard as originally intended by their creators: Rodgers & Hammerstein, Rodgers & Hart, Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, Kurt Weill, George & Ira Gershwin, Jerome Kern, Jerry Bock, Sheldon Harnick, Burt Bacharach, Harold Arlen, Johnny Mercer, Vernon Duke, Kander & Ebb, Jule Styne, Comden & Green... Encores! brings to life America's music theater heritage."

While many lesser known works have been given the chance to shine anew, it says nothing about limiting it to lesser known works. Even Follies, which was revived on Broadway six years ago, recently received a much ballyhooed treatment.

At 02 March, 2007, Blogger Tober said...

LuPone was extraordinary in Gypsy and I think it's as important for a series like Encores! to give a second hearing to a remarkable performance by a great American stage actor as it is to give outings to long lost American music theatre. All three show stopping numbers of LuPone in Gypsy are on YouTube. Enjoy!
Also, if Daniel Evans makes it to New York with the production of Sunday.... you're in for an absolute treat - he is simply wonderful.

At 02 March, 2007, Blogger Steve On Broadway (SOB) said...


Amen on Patti LuPone and Gypsy. It was one of the single most memorable performances I've ever seen, and it was certainly the best I saw last year.

As I've said before, I'm hoping beyond hope that Daniel Evans and Jenna Russell will come stateside for Sunday In The Park With George.


At 06 March, 2007, Blogger Isn't it rich...? said...

I too was pleased to see Jessica B. mention the rumored production. CANT WAIT.

At 06 March, 2007, Blogger Steve On Broadway (SOB) said...

IIR, Something told me you'd find this news of particular interest!


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