Playbill Vault's Today in Theatre History: June 4

Playbill Vault   Playbill Vault's Today in Theatre History: June 4
Mary Testa and Jackie Hoffman in Xanadu.
Mary Testa and Jackie Hoffman in Xanadu. Paul Kolnik

1968 Stage and screen star Dorothy Gish dies in Rapallo, Italy. Her first New York stage appearance was in 1903 in East Lynne. She began her film career in 1912, but resumed her stage career in 1928. She was 70 years old.

1973 Mike Nichols' production of Anton Chekhov's Uncle Vanya opens at the Circle in the Square on Broadway. Lillian Gish, George C. Scott, Nicol Williamson, Julie Christie, Cathleen Nesbitt, Barnard Hughes, Conrad Bain, and Elizabeth Wilson fill out the cast.

1979 Herman Shumlin, Broadway producer, dies at age 80. He is credited with helping Lillian Hellman's plays win an audience.

2002 Some Like It Hot—the revised version of the 1972 Broadway musical, Sugar—begins a national tour in Houston that takes it to dozens of U.S. cities. It toplines Tony Curtis, who co-starred in the 1950s Billy Wilder film on which the show is based.

2008 Peter Kapetan, an actor, singer, and dancer who appeared on Broadway in The Wedding Singer, Titanic, Sunset Boulevard, and Got Tu Go Disco, dies at the age of 51.

More of Today's Birthdays: Clara Blandick 1880. Rosalind Russell 1907. Dennis Weaver 1924. Bruce Dern 1936. Mary Testa 1955. Keith David 1956. Sam Harris 1961.

Watch Mary Testa talk to Seth Rudetsky about appearing on Broadway in The Rink and Barnum:


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