Night Must Fall, the Broadway chiller starring Matthew Broderick, will close June 27 at the Helen Hayes Theatre, where it opened April 20 after an initial run at the Lyceum Theatre.
John Tillinger's staging of Emlyn Williams' potboiler, for the National Actors Theatre, did well enough in its run at the Lyceum to transfer to the Hayes scant weeks after Band in Berlin closed there.
The move of Night Must Fall came as something of a surprise to the theatre community, for -- though the revival of the Williams thriller garnered a positive notice from the Times -- it was always understood that the show would end on schedule, due to Broderick's commitment to appear in The Death of Papa, a new Horton Foote play at CT's Hartford Stage, May 27. A spokesperson for the National Actors Theatre said Broderick had given up that play to stay with Night Must Fall through the end of July.
The play tells of a psychopathic bellboy and the spell he casts on several women in an English country house. The show began previews on Feb. 2 and opened March 8 at the Lyceum, with a cast of Broderick, Pamela J. Gray (later replaced by J. Smith Cameron), Judy Parfitt, Michael Countryman (Nine Armenians), Seana Kofoed, Patricia Kilgarriff and Peter McRobbie. Tillinger's busy directing season has also included Getting and Spending and The Exact Center of the Universe.
(Night Must Fall closed at the Lyceum April 11 and was to move to the Hayes two days later, but that wasn't enough time for the full load in, so the reopening was postponed by a week.)
Judy Parfitt left the show May 30, to be replaced by Paddy Croft.
For tickets and information on Night Must Fall call (212) 239-6200. Student rush tickets are available for $10.
*In other news, The Sound of Music recently announced it would close June 27. Imminent shutterings of The Lonesome West and Not About Nightingales have also been reported.