Benny and his local bookmaker's barbershop are popular around New York City's Theater for the New City. The comic vaudeville musical Benny's Barbershop will extend its run at the theatre through April 9. Performances began March 16 with an original closing date set for April 2. An unexpected hit for the company in the 1999 season, Barbershop ran March 18-April 3, 1999 with direction by Mark Marcante and a cast that included Craig Meade, Juan Villeges and TNC founder, Crystal Field.
Most of that original cast has returned in this musical comedy about Benny, an ex-baseball player, who, on returning to his father's barbershop, becomes embroiled with the mob. While his manicurist causes a rift between the real gangsters and Benny, whose father owes a heap of money to the mob, the barber-bookmaker can only hope he'll get out alive. T. Scott Lilly and Marcante wrote the book and lyrics with music by Lilly and Joe Diamond.
Marcante takes the title role with Biancomano as the old gangster, Field as Betty, Jack Tynan and Primy Rivera as two young hoods,Villegas as the G-man, Daniel Wilkes Kelly and Alexander as the neighborhood loafers and Meade as the actor/barber.
Tickets are $10. Theater for the New City (Johnson Theater) is located at 155 First Avenue. For tickets, call (212) 254-1109.
-- By Christine Ehren