The new revival of Sweet Charity, starring pop star Paula Abdul, will debut on July 19, 1999, at the Weidner Auditorium in Green Bay, WI, spokesman Susan Weaving told Playbill On-Line. From there it will travel to Pittsburgh, Atlanta, St. Paul, Charlotte and other cities. Exact dates will be announced soon.
The Cy Coleman-Neil Simon-Dorothy Fields musical Sweet Charity will hit Broadway sometime during the 1999-2000 season, most likely in a Nederlander house.
Abdul will also choreograph the entire show, while Wayne Cilento will direct. No other stars have been named for the production. Bob Young produces.
According to Weaving, Neil Simon plans to do some rewrites on his 1966 book. "In the meeting with Simon, Coleman and Abdul, they decided they were going to work together very closely," she said. "Simon had already decided he wanted to update it." Coleman will not be writing any new songs for Abdul, added Weaving, but he will make himself available for "revisions and updates."
Abdul, who got her start as an L.A. Lakers cheerleader, had a string of hits in the late '80s and early '90s, including "Forever Your Girl," "Cold Hearted Snake," "Straight Up," and "Rush." Apart from music videos and commercials, she possesses few acting credits, though she has choreographed several films, including "The Doors," "Big," and "Coming to America." Cilento is known for his choreography of the Broadway shows The Who's Tommy , How to Succeed... and Dream.
Sweet Charity contains such well-known songs as "Big Spender," "If My Friends Could See Me Now," and "Rhythm of Life." It premiered in 1966 at the Palace Theatre with Gwen Verdon in the title role under the direction of Bob Fosse. Charity was later made into a movie starring Shirley MacLaine with Fosse again directing.
-- By Robert Simonson