Jackman was asked if he would consider being a replacement in a role, a rare move for actors of his caliber. The Tony winner replied that the father in Fun Home, the critically acclaimed Broadway-bound musical by Jeanine Tesori and Lisa Kron, would be the role he would take on.
"It's an astonishing part," Jackman said, describing the role of Bruce Bechdel, the closeted gay father central to the story who commits suicide. The role was created Off-Broadway by Tony Award winner Michael Cerveris, who earned critical praise and the Lucille Lortel Award for his performance.
Casting for the Broadway production has not been announced, but it is expected that the complete Off-Broadway closing cast will repeat their performances when Fun Home arrives at the Circle in the Square April 4, 2015.
Jackman and The River are the current tenants of the Circle in the Square. The limited engagement is scheduled through Jan. 25, 2015.
Fun Home, scheduled for an April 22, 2015, opening night, will be directed by Sam Gold, who helmed the show's critically embraced Off-Broadway bow. Read critics' Off-Broadway reviews of Fun Home here.
Fun Home won the New York Drama Critics' Circle Award for Best Musical and Lucille Lortel Awards for Outstanding Musical, Outstanding Lead Actor (Michael Cerveris) and Outstanding Featured Actress (Judy Kuhn).
Tesori is the Tony-nominated composer of Caroline, or Change; Shrek; Violet; and Thoroughly Modern Millie. Book writer and lyricist Kron, a Tony nominee for Well, also penned In the Wake and 2.5 Minute Ride. Fun Home, which dramatizes lesbian cartoonist Bechdel's coming-of-age and her relationship with her closeted gay father, opened to acclaim Oct. 22, 2013, at the Public Theater.
The original Off-Broadway cast of Fun Home featured Beth Malone (Alison), Sydney Lucas (Small Alison) and Alexandra Socha (Medium Alison) as author-narrator Bechdel at various stages of her life. It also featured Tony Award winner Cerveris as her father, Bruce Bechdel, and Tony nominee Judy Kuhn as her mother, Helen Bechdel.
Fun Home is described as "a fresh, daring new musical based on the acclaimed graphic novel by Alison Bechdel. When her father dies unexpectedly, graphic novelist Alison dives deep into her past to tell the story of the volatile, brilliant, one-of-a-kind man whose temperament and secrets defined her family and her life. Moving between past and present, Alison relives her unique childhood playing at the family’s Bechdel Funeral Home, her growing understanding of her own sexuality and the looming, unanswerable questions about her father's hidden desires."
Fun Home will be produced on Broadway by Fox Theatricals and Barbara Whitman, along with Carole Shorenstein Hays, Tom Casserly, Paula Marie Black, Latitude Link, Terry Schnuck/Jack Lane, Nathan Vernon, Elizabeth Armstrong, JAM Theatricals and Scott M. Delman.
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