That is the day when two blood-soaked, critical hits end their runs on Broadway: Martin McDonagh's farcical look at a splinter terrorist group and its victims, The Lieutenant of Inishmore; and John Doyle's reinvention of Stephen Sondheim's Sweeney Todd, in which the cast doubles as the orchestra. Both shows traffic in buckets of the red stuff, courtesy of barber Sweeney's greedy razor and the multiple guns of McDonagh's clownish killers. Lieutenant will have played 16 previews and 142 regular performances. It began previews on April 19 and officially opened on May 3.
Sweeney, which began previews Oct. 3, 2005, and opened Nov. 3, played 349 performances and 35 previews.
What is the secret recipe for the gallons of blood that are spilled onto the stage (and actors) in Inishmore? Producer Randall Wreghitt passed the ingredient list to Playbill.com: red food coloring, Hershey's syrup, peanut butter, light Karo syrup and dark Karo syrup. One imagines the leftovers could be used for brownies or fudge this fall.)
Also closing Sept. 3 is the David Yazbek musical Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, in which two Riviera con men spill no blood, but certainly have a bloody nerve. The show was the longest-lived of the three: it will have run 36 previews and 666 regular performances at the Imperial Theatre.
The three shows collected a total of 22 Tony nominations. Dirty received 11 in 2005, winning one for Featured Actor Norbert Leo Butz. Sweeney Todd collected six noms in 2006, winning for director John Doyle and orchestrator Sarah Travis. Inishmore won five noms in 2006, but won no awards.