Ally Sheedy's debut as Hedwig in Hedwig and the Angry Inch has been pushed back a week until Sept. 20. A show spokesman said Sheedy's appearance at the Telluride Film Festival to promote her film "I'll Take You There" caused her to miss several rehearsals. Sheedy will make up the lost rehearsal time this coming week.
In the meantime, rocker and sometime actor (and full-time son of pop star Donovan [sic]) Donovan Leitch will fill in. Leitch bowed in the role on Sept. 5 and performed it again on Sept. 8. During Sheedy's run, he will play the role at certain performances. Exactly which shows Leitch will star in has not been stipulated.
Leitch is the lead singer of the group Nancy Boy. Leitch's father, the single-named Donovan, made his mark in the 60s with such pyschedelia tinged hit songs as "Sunshine Superman" and "Mellow Yellow." As an actor, Leitch has appeared in the films "Gas, Food, Lodging" and "I Shot Andy Warhol."
Sheedy starred in such mid-80s teen comedies as "The Breakfast Club" and "St. Elmo's Fire." Her career was long on the down side, however, when the 1998 art film "High Art" brought her back into the public eye. In that movie, Sheedy played lesbian, drug-addled, has-been photographer.
In other Hedwig news, the show begins a national tour this fall, as a new production starring Kevin Cahoon starts in Boston on Sept. 24. An L.A.-based show will commence on Oct. 24. Finally, a European troupe will start performances in Cologne, Germany, on Sept. 10. Sheedy will be the first female to play the part of the tortured German transsexual rocker. To date, only male actors have filled the role: the show's creator John Cameron Mitchell, Michael Cerveris and Kevin Cahoon.
Hedwig was written by its star, Mitchell (book), and Trask (music and lyrics). Leitch and Sheedy play the title singer, an obscure and tortured transsexual rock singer, who tells her darkly comic story while ostensibly performing a concert. The Angry Inch, her back-up band, is Trask's rock combo Cheater, a staple at such downtown New York clubs as CBGB's and Mercury Lounge. The musical has been playing at the Jane Street Theatre since Feb. 14, 1998. For tickets call (212) 239-6200.
-- By Robert Simonson