Now that the hot weather has gripped New York, theatres have a tougher time finding audiences. The Tony-winning Titanic may be posting record numbers at the box office, but other shows are struggling -- with several giving up the fight this weekend.
Two of the luckier entries are London Assurance and All My Sons, both at the Roundabout. Both were supposed to close June 22 but both were extended an extra week. London Assurance is in the Roundabout's Broadway space -- (212) 869-8400 -- and stars Tony nominated Brian Bedford and Helen Carey. Opening April 30, it was the last official show of the 1996-97 Broadway season and will have played 16 previews and 72 regular performances.
All My Sons, by Arthur Miller, is in the Off-Broadway Laura Pels Theatre -- (212) 869-8400 -- and features John Cullum. By its closing, All My Sons will have played 42 previews and 107 regular performances.
Broadway's long-running Master Class, now starring Dixie Carter (after Zoe Caldwell and Patti LuPone) will be dismissed June 28. Terrence McNally's look at the imperious but easily wounded Maria Callas opened Nov. 5, 1995. The Tony-winning drama will close after 12 previews and 601 regular performances at the Golden Theatre (212) 239-6200.
(Another long run, Defending The Caveman, closed June 21 after 26 previews and 671 regular performances.) Favored for a best musical Tony before it opened -- and then blanked at the actual ceremony (despite 11 nominations) -- Kander & Ebb's Steel Pier will splinter June 28 after 33 previews and 76 regular performances at the Richard Rodgers Theatre, (212) 307-4100. Previews began March 27; opening night was April 24.
Also concluding a disappointingly short run is Wendy Wasserstein's latest, An American Daughter, about the way politics and media manipulation subvert a woman's legitimate candidacy for the surgeon generalship. Though Lynne Thigpen won a best featured actress Tony, the show closes Sunday, June 29, after the 3 PM matinee. By then, Daughter will have played 27 previews and 88 regular performances at the Cort Theatre, (212) 239-6200. Kate Burton recently took over for Kate Nelligan in the lead.
The Gin Game is NOT closing, but it is taking a one-week hiatus, July 1-6, as Charles Durning flies to Toronto for a film shoot. The two character comedy/drama, also starring Julie Harris, returns July 8.
A limited-run Off-Broadway revival of John Patrick Shanley's Women Of Manhattan, by the Barrow Group, will also close this weekend after 6 previews and 16 regular performances. The show began previews May 30, officially opened June 6, and ends June 29.
"Capitol Steps," a comedy troupe formed 16 years ago that finally reached Off-Broadway Feb. 5, was originally intended to close March 23. The musical-sketch comedy was extended through June at the John Houseman Theatre -- (212) 239-6200 -- due to "strong audience demand and critical reception." Upon closing June 29, Capitol Steps will have played 7 previews and 152 regular performances. The troupe will then step to San Francisco for performances beginning July 10.
Clean, a story of love on the edge in a flamboyant, dangerous world of budding sexuality and urban violence, will close June 29 at NY's Atlantic Theatre Company -- (212) 239-6200 -- a week earlier than its scheduled July 7 finish. Edwin Sanchez's drama closes after 11 previews and 21 regular perfomances.
Homework, a comedy by "In Living Color's" Kim Coles, finishes its limited run June 28. The show opened June 12 after starting previews June 5 at HERE Theatre on 6th Ave. In Greenwich Village (212) 647-0202.
A revival of Samm-Art Williams' family drama, Home, by the Melting Pot Theatre Company, will close June 29. The production will have run 2 previews and 27 regular performances. Kent Gash directs the piece, which is performed at the Theatre of the Riverside Church on Riverside Drive, (212) 279-4200.
In happier news, Forbidden Broadway Strikes Back closed June 21 at the Triad Theatre on West 72nd -- only to reopen June 26 at a brand new theatre, The Stardust, on Broadway & 51st St. New songs will be added that parody the season just gone by. Call (212) 239-6200 for tickets.
Also finishing a limited run June 29 is the jazz-inflected drama, You Don't Miss Your Water, at the Vineyard Theatre's 26th St. space. A five piece combo accompanies the jazz/poetry piece about growing up in a complicated and remarkable black family. Cornelius Eady and Diedre L. Murray's play began previews June 6 and opened June 18.
--By David Lefkowitz