Playbill On-Line has learned that the Roundabout Theatre Company may put Uncle Vanya into the Brooks Atkinson Theatre in order to ensure Tony eligibility for the play, which will star Sir Derek Jakobi and Roger Rees.
Chekhov's Vanya was to have been the premiere production in Roundabout's new home, the American Airlines Theatre (formerly the Selwyn). Though progress with fundraising and the reconstruction of the theatre continues apace, the leading nonprofit clearly wanted to avoid risking its eligibility for the Tony nod in case construction delays prevent a timely opening.
At a press conference held to announce the naming of the American Airlines Theatre on March 1, Roundabout artistic director Todd Haimes spoke from a makeshift dais on the company's new stage and said he had selected Uncle Vanya because "classics are what we're best known for."
Haimes added, "And I've been trying to get Derek Jakobi here for years."
If the Roundabout does shift Vanya to the Brooks Atkinson, it explains why the possibility of a Broadway move to the Brooks Atkinson for the Toronto production of Enigma Variations (starring Donald Sutherland and John Rubinstein) was suddenly nixed on March 2.