A spokesperson for Wicked confirmed that Ayers will replace Joey McIntyre as Fiyero beginning Jan. 11, 2005. McIntyre will play his final performance Jan. 9. Jan. 11 will also see the arrival of Jeffrey Kuhn as Boq. A new Elphaba will also begin that day, although Tony Award winner Idina Menzel's replacement has yet to be cast.
David Ayers also appeared on Broadway in Mamma Mia! His other theatrical credits include Hot Mikado, A New Brain, The Sound of Music, Honk! and Hair. Ayers has been seen on screen in “Law & Order: Criminal Intent” and “Guiding Light.”
Based on the novel by Gregory Maguire, which turned every Oz myth inside out, Wicked explores the early life of the witches of Oz: Glinda and Elphaba. The two main characters meet at Shiz, a school where both hope to take up sorcery. Glinda is madly popular and Elphaba is, well, green. By a misunderstanding, they wind up roommates and, after an initial period of mutual loathing, begin to learn something about each other. Their life paths continue to intersect through a shared love, entry into the Emerald City and interaction with the Wizard himself. Eventually, their choices and convictions take them on widely different paths.
With a score by Stephen Schwartz and a book by Winnie Holzman, Wicked began previews on Broadway Oct. 8, 2003, with an official opening Oct. 30, 2003. The company currently includes Tony winner Menzel as Elphaba, Jennifer Laura Thompson as Glinda, George Hearn as The Wizard, Carole Shelley as Madame Morrible, Joey McIntyre as Fiyero, Michelle Federer as Nessarose, Christopher Fitzgerald as Boq and William Youmans as Doctor Dillamand.
Directed by Joe Mantello, Wicked features choreography by Wayne Cilento and plays the Gershwin, 222 West 51st Street. Tickets are available by calling (212) 307-4100 or by visiting www.ticketmaster.com.