Brighton Beach Memoirs and Broadway Bound to Play the Nederlander

News   Brighton Beach Memoirs and Broadway Bound to Play the Nederlander Producers Emanuel Azenberg and Ira Pittelman announced June 17 that "The Neil Simon Plays" — new productions of Brighton Beach Memoirs and Broadway Bound — will play the Nederlander Theatre.
Neil Simon
Neil Simon Photo by Aubrey Reuben

Directed by David Cromer, Brighton Beach begins previews Oct. 2 and opens Oct. 25; Broadway Bound begins previews Nov. 18 and opens Dec. 10. Beginning with previews for the latter, "The Neil Simon Plays" will be performed in repertory on a varied schedule.

As previously announced, the plays will feature Laurie Metcalf as Kate Jerome and Dennis Boutsikaris as Jack Jerome, with Santino Fontana as Stanley Jerome, Jessica Hecht as Blanche, Josh Grisetti as Eugene Jerome in Broadway Bound, Allan Miller as Ben in Broadway Bound, Noah Robbins as Eugene Jerome in Brighton Beach Memoirs and Alexandra Socha as Nora in Brighton Beach Memoirs. Casting for the role of Laurie in Brighton Beach Memoirs will be announced shortly.

Scenic design is by John Lee Beatty, costume design is by Jane Greenwood and lighting design is by Brian MacDevitt. Tickets will go on sale in August. Rehearsals will begin in New York on Aug. 24.

According to the producers, Brighton Beach Memoirs "centers on young Jewish teen Eugene Morris Jerome and his extended family living in a crowded home in the Brighton Beach section of Brooklyn in 1937: his overworked father, Jack; overbearing mother, Kate; his older brother Stanley; Kate's widowed sister Blanche and her daughters, Nora and Laurie. As Eugene spends his time daydreaming about a baseball career, he must also cope with his family's troubles, his awkward discovery of the opposite sex and his developing identity as a writer."

In Broadway Bound, "it's the late 1940s. Eugene and his older brother Stanley have started their careers as professional comedy writers, but at home in Brighton Beach, their parents' marriage is falling apart. When the brothers use these troubles as inspiration for a radio comedy skit, the Jerome family may never be the same." They plays are beloved by audiences, who got a glimpse at Simon's (fictionalized) homelife in the poignant comedies. A "middle" play, Biloxi Blues told of Eugene's adventures in the Army in World War II.

Brighton Beach originally opened on March 27, 1983, at the Alvin Theatre and played for 1,299 performances. (During the run, the Alvin Theatre was renamed The Neil Simon Theatre.) Broadway Bound opened on Dec. 4, 1986, at the Broadhurst Theatre, where it played for 756 performances.

Simon is the winner of three Tony Awards, a Pulitzer Prize and the Mark Twain Award for American Humor and was awarded a Kennedy Center Honor in 1995. Some of his plays include Barefoot in the Park, The Odd Couple, Plaza Suite, The Last of the Red Hot Lovers, The Prisoner of Second Avenue, The Sunshine Boys, California Suite, Chapter Two, Lost in Yonkers, Laughter on the 23rd Floor, The Dinner Party and the books for the musicals for Little Me, Sweet Charity, Promises Promises, They're Playing Our Song and The Goodbye Girl.

Nederlander Theatre is located in Manhattan at 208 West 41st Street.