With only days left in Broadway's Master Class,the teacher was absent for the June 26 performance. According to a production spokesperson, Dixie Carter, who took over the role of opera diva Maria Callas Jan. 31, had "a scratchy throat" but is expected back on the boards June 27, and for the remaining shows June 28.
Terrence McNally's Tony-winning look at Maria Callas, closes June 28 after 12 previews and 601 regular performances.
Carter's contract with the show ends on that date, and she won't be extending her stay. She began in the role Jan. 31.
The show has been averaging slightly under $100,000 per week for a 7-performance weekly schedule. Attendance figures for the week ending May 18 had the show filling roughly 70 percent capacity.
Carter, star of TV's "Designing Women," succeeded Patti LuPone in the role of the opera diva, Jan. 31, with an official re-opening Feb. 20. LuPone, now in London with the play, had taken over on Broadway for original star, Zoe Caldwell. Carter is best known for her starring role as Julia Sugarbaker on "Designing Women," which ran for seven seasons. She won a Theatre World Award for playing in the 1975 New York Shakespeare Festival production of Jesse And The Bandit Queen. A fixture on the New York cabaret scene since the days of Julius Monk's Upstairs at the Downstairs revues, Carter made her Off-Broadway debut in 1963 in The Winter's Tale. Her last Broadway appearance was as Melba in the 1976 revival of Pal Joey.
Carter has credits in other media as well. Her CD Dixie Carter Sings John Wallowitch Live at the Carlyle was released on the DRG label. Her book Trying To Get to Heaven was published by Simon and Schuster. She's featured in the exercise video "Dixie Carter's Unworkout Video" and in 1994 started her own production company, Little Lambs Inc. Carter is married to actor Hal Holbrook.
Faye Dunaway's Master Class tour opened Nov. 12, 1996 at Boston's Wilbur Theatre. After the tour, Dunaway will appear in the film version of Master Class, which she is co-producing with the owner of the film rights, Jon B. Platt.
In a last bit of Callas news, 1997 marks the 20th anniversary of her death. In commemoration, EMI is re-releasing a full set of her opera recordings.