Houdyshell Joins N.Y. Wicked Nov. 14; Kane to Star in L.A. Version

News   Houdyshell Joins N.Y. Wicked Nov. 14; Kane to Star in L.A. Version As previously reported, Tony Award nominee Jayne Houdyshell, recently seen in the New York premiere of The Pain and the Itch at Playwrights Horizons, will make her Broadway musical debut in Wicked.

Jayne Houdyshell
Jayne Houdyshell Photo by Aubrey Reuben

Houdyshell will replace Carol Kane as Madame Morrible beginning Nov. 14. Kane will reprise that role for the Los Angeles production of Wicked, which begins performances at the Pantages Theatre in February 2007. The L.A. production, as recently announced, will feature Eden Espinosa and Megan Hilty as, respectively, Elphaba and Glinda.

Jayne Houdyshell received a Tony nomination for her performance in the Broadway production of Well and an Obie Award as well as Drama Desk, Outer Critic Circle and Lucille Lortel Award nominations for her work in that show's Off-Broadway mounting at the Public Theater. Her numerous theatrical credits also include Much Ado About Nothing, Fighting Words, True Love, Attempts on Her Life, The Pain and the Itch (Jefferson Award) and The Clean House. On screen Houdyshell has been seen in "Garden State," "Changing Lanes," "Maid in Manhattan," "Conviction" and "Law & Order."

Carol Kane's many stage credits include Sly Fox, Control Freak, Signature, The Lucky Spot, Family Week, The Tempest, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night's Dream, A Woman of Mystery, Frankie and Johnny and He Hunts. Kane received an Academy Award nomination for her work in "Hester Street," and her numerous screen credits also include "Carnal Knowledge," "The Last Detail," "Annie Hall," "Dog Day Afternoon," "The World's Greatest Lover," "When a Stranger Calls," "The Princess Bride," "Scrooged," "The Lemon Sisters," "The Pallbearer," "Office Killer," "Trees Lounge," "Addams Family Values," "Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen" and "The Pacifier and Cosmopolitan."

Wicked currently stars Ana Gasteyer (Elphaba), Kate Reinders (Glinda), David Garrison (the Wizard), Carol Kane (Madame Morrible), Derrick Williams (Fiyero), Jenna Leigh Green (Nessarose), Logan Lipton (Boq) and Steven Skybell (Dr. Dillamond).

With a score by Stephen Schwartz and a book by Winnie Holzman, Wicked began previews on Broadway Oct. 8, 2003, after a summer tryout at San Francisco's Curran Theatre. Based on Gregory Maguire's novel, which turned every Oz myth inside out, Wicked explores the early life of the witches of Oz: Glinda and Elphaba. The two main characters meet at Shiz, a school where both hope to take up sorcery. Glinda is madly popular and Elphaba is, well, green. By a misunderstanding, they wind up roommates and, after an initial period of mutual loathing, begin to learn something about each other. Their life paths continue to intersect through a shared love, entry into the Emerald City and interaction with the Wizard himself. Eventually, their choices and convictions take them on widely different paths.

The Broadway company, directed by Joe Mantello, plays the Gershwin Theatre. Tickets are available by calling (212) 307-4100 or by visiting www.ticketmaster.com.

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