Patinkin Sings Again in March 28 Return to Bway Wild Party

News   Patinkin Sings Again in March 28 Return to Bway Wild Party Mandy Patinkin, known for his thrillingly theatrical vocal extremes, is expected to return to the Broadway company of The Wild Party March 28 following 13 days of vocal rest.

Mandy Patinkin, known for his thrillingly theatrical vocal extremes, is expected to return to the Broadway company of The Wild Party March 28 following 13 days of vocal rest.

The doctor-ordered rest for the star came just five days after previews for the Michael John LaChiusa musical began at the Virginia Theatre.

The March 16 performance was canceled due to Patinkin's vocal strain, allowing David Masenheimer time to rehearse the lead role of brutal vaudevillian Burrs, whose love interest is a chorine named Queenie, played by Academy Award nominee Toni Collette.

The lovers are at the center of the LaChiusa-George C. Wolfe retelling of the Jazz Age verse poem by Joseph Moncure March (1928's "The Wild Party").

Performances, minus Patinkin, resumed March 17. Official opening for The Public Theater production -- starring Collette, Eartha Kitt, Patinkin and 12 others -- is April 13, unchanged despite the temporary loss of Patinkin. *

The Wild Party began previews March 10 at the Virginia Theatre, luring the curious to the second New York musical of this season to be based on a 1928 poem that few heard of before 1999.

Composer-lyricist LaChiusa wrote the libretto with Wolfe (who directs), drawing on the narrative poem by March, who imagined a debauched Jazz Age party populated by playboys, show folk, drinkers, gangsters and hosts Queenie (a sex-driven chorine) and Burrs (her lover and a brutal vaudeville clown).

At Off-Broadway's Manhattan Theatre Club, composer-lyricist librettist Andrew Lippa's version, also called The Wild Party, opened February 24 to mixed reviews. It will run through April 9 but not move to Broadway, despite producers who were waiting in the wings to move it. A cast recording of the MTC staging is expected.

Coincidentally (or perhaps not, considering the source material), both shows have an opening number called "Queenie Was a Blonde," which is the opening line of the poem.

Collette was nominated for a Best Supporting Actress Oscar for "The Sixth Sense." Angelina Jolie took the prize March 26.

Tickets are $25-$85. The Virginia is at 245 W. 52nd St. in Manhattan. For information, call (212) 239-6200.