The Broadway theatre may currently be struggling to find audiences, but that hasn't stopped producers from hatching plans to bring new shows into town. Romeo and Juliet, which opened at the McCarter Theatre in Princeton to glowing reviews, may take New Jersey Transit to Manhattan and a Broadway home sometime this fall. A spokesman at the McCarter told Playbill On-Line that several producers have taken in the show, which netted raves from Variety and the New York Times.
Talks are in their early stages at this point, but the aim would be one of Broadway's intimate playhouses, such as the Booth or Helen Hayes.
Interest in the production is somewhat surprising given that director Emily Mann has populated her version of the Tragedy of Verona with unknowns, including a Romeo and Juliet just out of school. Jeffrey Carlson plays the young Montague and Sarah Drew, who is 20 and still attending the University of Virginia, plays the Capulet daughter. Drew was particularly singled out for praise in reviews.
The rest of the cast is made up by Remy Auberjonois, Sterling K. Brown, David Cromwell, Johnny Giacalone, David Greenspan, Mirjana Jokovic, Karl Light, Christopher Rivera, Steven H. Rowe, Myra Lucretia Taylor and Joe Wilson, Jr. There is no word on whether the original cast would remain with the show, if it moved to New York.
Past McCarter productions which have made the jump to Broadway include Having Our Say and Electra with Zoe Wanamaker. Though one of Shakespeare's best known and loved plays, Romeo and Juliet has received few recent high-profile productions in New York. The tragedy has not seen Broadway in many years.
The recently announced 2001-02 McCarter season includes:
• Romeo and Juliet directed by Emily Mann, Sept. 11-30
• A Christmas Carol, Dec. 6-30
• All Over by Edward Albee, directed by Emily Mann, Feb. 12-March 3, 2002
• Humpty Dumpty by Eric Bogosian, directed by Jo Bonney, March 26-April 14, 2002
• Don Juan by Moliere, directed by Stephen Wadsworth, April 30 May 19.
—By Robert Simonson