The new comedy with music starring Short, and conceived by Tony Award winner Short and Hairspray's Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, finished its San Francisco run May 21 and its Toronto run on July 2. Its run at Chicago's LaSalle Bank Theatre will be July 5-16. Chicagoans should expect a somewhat different show from the one that was seen in Toronto; Short got largely critical notices in his native Canada.
Fame Becomes Me will open on Broadway Aug. 17.
Joining Short onstage are Brooks Ashmanskas (Little Me), Mary Birdsong ("Reno 911"), Capathia Jenkins (Caroline, or Change) and Nicole Parker ("Mad TV"). They will play numerous different roles alongside Short "guiding the audience through an improbable musical version of his life story," according to press materials.
The structural nature of the long-gestating show is described thusly: "Fame Becomes Me begins with Short and company singing the exuberant 'Party with Marty,' launching what he intends to be a celebration of his 'fabulous, perfect life.' Very quickly, it becomes clear the audience—addicted to Oprah and 'Behind the Music' — expects scandal and angst from their star. Lacking any in his own life, Short frantically modifies his life story as he and the cast tell it, adding the requisite struggle, pain and psychobabble to fabricate an increasingly hilarious alternative autobiography."
The production features music by Shaiman, lyrics by Wittman and Shaiman and direction by Wittman. Shaiman, who will musical direct, will also be seen onstage. Wittman and Shaiman's Fame Becomes Me score includes such tunes as "Stepbrother de Jesus," "12 Step Pappy" and "Sniff, Sniff." The book for the show was penned by Short and Daniel Goldfarb. Christopher Gatelli will choreograph. The creative team will also include Scott Pask (set design), Jess Goldstein (costume design), lighting designer Chris Lee and sound design by Peter Hylenski. Orchestrations are provided by Larry Blank.
Short most recently starred in the Los Angeles debut of The Producers as Leo Bloom. He won a Tony for Little Me and also starred in Broadway's The Goodbye Girl.