The Glass Menagerie returned to Broadway following an engagement at the American Repertory Theater last winter. The Broadway engagement, which began previews Sept. 5 opened to rave reviews Sept. 26. The hit revival recouped its initial $2.6 million investment in January.
Tony Award-winning director John Tiffany and Tony-winning designer Bob Crowley set Williams' memory play about an overbearing mother and her fragile daughter, inspired by the playwright's own mother and sister, over a pool of reflective black liquid that surrounds the Wingfield apartment. Underscored by the music of composer Nico Muhly, Tiffany's production is filled with moments of theatrical magic.
Jones, who plays Amanda Wingfield, earned Tony Awards for The Heiress and Doubt. "She is a heroine," Jones said, describing the character of faded belle Amanda in a Playbill magazine feature. "I never thought of her before as a heroine, but she absolutely is. She was left by her husband around 1920 and has had to survive the next 15 years or so with little children growing up, with no support, out of her element. What in the world did she do?" Read more here.
The cast also features Quinto (Angels in America, "Star Trek") as narrator son Tom, Keenan-Bolger (Peter and the Starcatcher, Spelling Bee) as sister Laura and Brian J. Smith (The Columnist, Come Back Little Sheba) as the Gentleman Caller. "To play Tom—which is the clearest distillation of Tennessee Williams himself—at this time in my life is perfect," Quinto added. "I'm just a little older than he was when he wrote the play, so I'm in very close relationship to a lot of the themes and issues he was struggling with that led him to this play. To me, that's a great gift as an actor—to enter into a role and an experience with that kind of foundation."
The Glass Menagerie reunites Tiffany's Tony Award-winning Once creative team. It has scenic and costume design by Bob Crowley, lighting design by Natasha Katz and sound design by Clive Goodwin. Original music is composed by Nico Muhly, with movement by Steven Hoggett.
According to producers, "Amanda Wingfield (Jones) is a southern belle past her prime, living with two grown children in a small apartment in St. Louis. Amanda dreams of a better life for her shy and crippled daughter Laura (Keenan-Bolger), and so she pushes her son Tom (Quinto) to find a 'gentleman caller' for the girl. However, the arrival of the gentleman caller (Smith) sends shockwaves through the family, and causes cracks to form in the delicate fantasies that have kept them going. A beautiful play full of poetry and longing, The Glass Menagerie makes its triumphant return to Broadway in an exquisite and groundbreaking new production."
This is the seventh staging of The Glass Menagerie to be produced on Broadway. The last New York production of Menagerie was in 2010, starring Tony Award winner Judith Ivey. The Roundbout Theatre Company transferred that production, which premiered at the Long Wharf Theatre.
The revival is produced by Jeffrey Richards and John N. Hart, and the A.R.T.
The Booth Theatre is located at 222 W. 45th Street. Visit theglassmenageriebroadway.com.