Bookings for the national tour of Mel Brooks' The Producers are slowly being released in markets throughout the country, and the folks at Broadway in Boston announced April 8 that the Colonial Theatre would be home to the hit June 17-July 13, 2003.
The first staging of the show beyond its current Tony Award winning Broadway run is expected to launch in September 2002 in Pittsburgh, although that engagement has not been officially announced. As bookers solidify their subscription seasons in markets around the country, with Producers as the jewel in the crown, those engagements are being announced individually. A third North American staging begins in Los Angeles at the Pantages Theatre in April 2003 and a fourth staging will play Toronto beginning in late spring 2003.
Broadway in Boston also announced John Leguizamo in Sexaholix...a love story June 4-9 at the Colonial; Mandy Patinkin in Concert Oct. 30-Nov. 3 at the Colonial; the Abbey Theatre's Medea with Fiona Shaw Oct. 23-Nov. 3 at the Wilbur Theatre; The Tale of the Allergist's Wife starring Valerie Harper beginning Nov. 26 at the Wilbur; Beauty and the Beast Dec. 3-Jan. 5, 2003, at the Colonial; Mamma Mia! Jan. 25-Feb. 23, 2003, at the Colonial; Mummenshantz Next Feb 4-9, 2003; and The Music Man April 30-May 11, 2003 at the Colonial. Broadway in Boston/Wang Center Productions co presentations at the Wang Theatre will include Some Like It Hot Jan. 14-19, 2003; 42nd Street Jan. 21-26. 2003; Contact March 4-9; Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella March 18-23, 2003; and Jesus Christ Superstar April 15-20, 2003.
For further information about Broadway in Boston, call (617) 880-2400 or visit broadwayinboston.com.
* No casting has been announced for any of the Producers stagings beyond New York, but regional audiences can expect Susan Stroman's direction and choreography, the songs of Mel Brooks and a libretto shared by Brooks and Thomas Meehan, drawing on Brooks' zany 1968 film about comically corrupt Broadway producers.
Mentioned in the theatre community for roles in this first tour are Lewis J. Stadlen (Max), Jim Walton (Leo) and Lee Roy Reams (Roger De Bris), but there has been no official announcement of any casting. It is thought the Los Angeles staging might include marquee names (Liz Smith reported Jason Alexander and Martin Short), and Brooks has said he hopes that the original stars, Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick, might one day return to the show.
The plot is a kind of love affair between a luckless producer, Max Bialystock, and Leo Bloom, a mousy accountant. They hatch a to raise more money than you need for a sure-fire Broadway flop and pocket the difference. Their "sure-fire" theatrical fiasco is none other than the musical, Springtime for Hitler. Brooks won an Academy Award for the screenplay of the film.
The show won the Tony Award for Best Musical in 2001, and most every other award of the season.
Confirmed engagements for the road show of The Producers include Cincinnati's Aronoff Center Oct. 22-Nov. 10, Minneapolis' Orpheum Theatre Nov. 12-Dec. 7, San Diego's Civic Theatre Dec. 31-Jan. 12, 2003, and Seattle's Paramount Theatre Feb. 5-16, 2003.
There has been no official announcement about the tour start date, but book writer Meehan told the Pittsburgh Post Gazette that the mega-hit would start its tour in Pittsburgh, PA in September. A casting notice noted that rehearsals for the Producers tour will start July 22, readying for a first performance in Pittsburgh Sept. 12.
The Producers on Broadway is produced by Rocco Landesman; Clear Channel Entertainment; The Frankel • Baruch • Viertel • Routh Group; Bob and Harvey Weinstein; Rick Steiner; Robert F.X. Sillerman and Mel Brooks, in association with James D. Stern/Douglas Meyer and by special arrangement with StudioCanal. It opened on Broadway on April 19, 2001.
The Broadway production at the St. James Theatre now stars Henry Goodman and Steven Weber, who recently replaced Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick. Call (212) 239-5800 for ticket information.