Prior to its Broadway arrival, End of the Rainbow will play the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, MN, Jan. 28-March 11, 2012. Terry Johnson, who staged the Tony-winning revival of La Cage aux Folles, directs the play by Peter Quilter, which played an acclaimed London engagement and is currently on a U.K. tour.
Bennett, who earned an Olivier Award nomination for her portrayal of Garland in the final year of her life, will repeat her performance for American audiences. Casting is currently underway for all other roles in the play, including Mickey Deans, Garland's last husband.
"A few rare times in one's work it becomes a privilege to serve a lifetime's performance from an actor," Johnson said in a statement. "I'm proud to say that working with the remarkable Tracie Bennett on End of the Rainbow is one of those times. I am delighted that American audiences will finally have a chance to witness this remarkable portrayal of one of their most enduring icons."
The Broadway production is produced by Lee Dean, Laurence Myers, Jenny Topper and Joey Parnes.
According to the producers, "End of the Rainbow is set in December 1968 and Judy Garland is about to make her comeback... again. In a London hotel room preparing for a series of concerts, with both her new young fiancé and her adoring accompanist, Garland struggles to get 'beyond the rainbow' with her signature cocktail of talent, tenacity, and razor-sharp wit. This savagely funny drama offers unique insight into the inner conflict that inspired and consumed one of the most beloved figures in American popular culture. End of the Rainbow features some of Garland’s most memorable songs, performed with the show-stopping gusto for which she will always be remembered." Bennett previously worked with Johnson in the London revival of La Cage aux Folles. She earned Olivier Awards for her performances as Velma Von Tussle in Hairspray and as Ilona Ritter She Loves Me. Her stage credits also include Les Miserables and Cash On Delivery. Numerous screen appearances include "Vincent," "The Long Firm," "Heroes and Villains," "Next of Kin," "Coronation Street," "Going Out," "Shirley Valentine," "Knights and Emeralds" and "Deep Red Instant Love."