The recently-announced cast of the Public Theater's upcoming On the Town includes a handful of actors from currently-running or recently-closed shows. Jose Llana, having just left The King and I, will be featured as one of the sailors in the Bernstein/Comden/Green classic. Also joining the Town will be Mary Testa, who will leave the role of Domina in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum July 13, and Andy Blankenbuehler, who was most recently seen in the chorus of just-closed Steel Pier. Titanic's musical director, Kevin Stites, will do similar duties on the eagerly-awaited George C. Wolfe production, which runs July 31 to Aug. 31 in Central Park. Another Town-induced departure is Blake Hammond, who has just left Howard Crabtree's When Pigs Fly. Hammond isn't the only actor to exit the hit gay revue: Jay Rogers has delivered his final torch songs to arch-conservatives Newt Gingrich, Strom Thurmond, and Rush Limbaugh from the stages of the Douglas Fairbanks Theater. Rogers can, however, still be heard on the RCA cast recording, excerpts of which (including "Torch Song #1-Newt") can be downloaded from Playbill On-Line.
Savion Glover has departed Bring in 'Da Noise, Bring in 'Da Funk prematurely, having given his final performance June 27. Originally scheduled to leave July 20, the star and choreographer of the smash tap dance revue is still expected to choreograph the upcoming national tour, which launches from Detroit in late September. Regular understudy Baakari Wilder is Glover's replacement. Also at the Ambassador Theatre, Mark Gerald Douglas subs for Jeffrey Wright ('da Voice) through July 13.
Though it's been on the boards for little more than three months, Titanic sees its first cast change with the departure of Becky Ann Baker (1st class passenger Charlotte Cardoza). Joining the cast of this year's come-from-behind best musical Tony winner is Caitlin Clarke as Baker's replacement.