She was flying on Broadway 20 years ago as Peter Pan, but come May 25 Sandy Duncan comes down to earth and into the darker world of Chicago, playing murderess Roxie Hart in the musical revival.
The name on everybody's lips for several months has been the blonde, girl-next-door-style Duncan: Cast members knew she was coming long before press reps for the show finally confirmed (Mar. 8) the actress in the revival of the 1975 musical by John Kander, Fred Ebb and Bob Fosse.
Duncan will start performances in the national tour Apr. 22-May 16, at Boston's Shubert Theatre, and then move into the Broadway cast at New York City's Shubert Theatre. Her co-stars will be Brent Barrett, Roz Ryan and P.J. Benjamin. There is no official announcement of who will play co- star Velma Kelly. Karen Ziemba will play Roxie until Duncan's dates.
Duncan is a three-time Tony Award nominee, for Canterbury Tales, The Boyfriend and Peter Pan. She appeared in the national and international tours of My One and Only with longtime friend Tommy Tune, and was set last year to star with Tune in a 1999 staging of Irving Berlin's Easter Parade, but that project is still in slow development.
She and Tune sang and danced in a vaudeville-style revue in Seattle in 1998. *
Chicago, directed Walter Bobbie and choreographed by Ann Reinking "in the style of" Fosse, opened on Broadway Nov. 14, 1996 and won six 1997 Tony Awards, including Best Musical Revival. For Chicago ticket information, call (212) 239-6200.
The official Chicago website is www.chicagothemusical.com.