The cast of the Greenwich Village-set comedy, known for its breezy witchcraft plot, includes Charles Busch, Malcolm Gets, Dody Goodman, Jonathan Freeman and Howard McGillin. Fans of the 1950 play say the witchcraft angle was a veiled metaphor for gay life. The play prefigured and perhaps inspired the TV series "Bewitched."
The benefit performance, directed by Carl Andress, is at 7 PM March 14 at the Lucille Lortel Theatre, 121 Christopher Street, in the heart of Greenwich Village.
"Gillian (Charles Busch) is a beautiful, bored witch who decides to amuse herself by practicing magic on her handsome new neighbor, Shep (Howard McGillin)," according to Drama Dept. notes. "Gillian uses her powers to make Shep fall in love with her, knowing that she's immune to his charms, since witches can't fall in love — or so she thinks."
Malcolm Gets is Nicky Holroyd, Jonathan Freeman is Sidney Redlith and Dody Goodman is Ms. Holroyd (Miss Queenie).
Bell, Book & Candle originally starred Rex Harrison and Lili Palmer. The film version starred Kim Novak, Jimmy Stewart, Jack Lemon and Ernie Kovacs.
Drama Dept. is a collective of actors, directors, designers, writers and stage managers who collaborate to create new works and revive neglected classics. Their past productions have included As Bees In Honey Drown, June Moon, The Country Club, The Book of Liz, Music from a Sparkling Planet and Shanghai Moon, among other works.
Bell, Book & Candle is presented in association with the Lucille Lortel Theatre Foundation.