Three-time Tony Award winner Glenn Close returned to Broadway February 9 in a revival of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Tony Award-winning Best Musical, Sunset Boulevard, which began previews February 2 at the Palace Theatre. Close won her third Tony for her portrayal of Norma Desmond in the original 1994 Broadway production of Sunset.
Critics have begun filing their reviews. Playbill.com will update these links as more are posted:
Close is joined in this revival by Michael Xavier as Joe Gillis, Siobhan Dillon as Betty Schaefer, and Fred Johanson as Max von Mayerling with Nancy Anderson, Mackenzie Bell, Preston Truman Boyd, Barry Busby, Britney Coleman, Julian Decker, Anissa Felix, Drew Foster, David Hess, Brittney Johnson, Katie Ladner, Stephanie Martignetti, Lauralyn McClelland, T. Oliver Reid, Lance Roberts, Stephanie Rothenberg, Graham Rowat, Paul Schoeffler, Andy Taylor, Sean Thompson, Matt Wall, and Jim Walton.
Direct from a sold-out engagement last year at the English National Opera, which marked Close’s West End debut, this production of the musical—which is based on Billy Wilder's classic film of the same name—features a 40-piece orchestra, unusually large by contemporary standards.
With the opening of Sunset Boulevard at the Palace, the composer Lloyd Webber has the rare distinction of having four musicals running simultaneously on Broadway: The Phantom of the Opera, School of Rock—The Musical, Cats, and Sunset Boulevard. It's the first time that distinction has been achieved since Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein in the early 1950s. In celebration of the achievement, producers have launched the website alwbroadway.com as a single source of information on all four shows.
“In her mansion on Sunset Boulevard, faded, silent-screen goddess, Norma Desmond, lives in a fantasy world,” according to press notes. “Impoverished screen writer, Joe Gillis, on the run from debt collectors, stumbles into her reclusive world. Persuaded to work on Norma’s ‘masterpiece’, a film script that she believes will put her back in front of the cameras, he is seduced by her and her luxurious life-style. Joe becomes entrapped in a claustrophobic world until his love for another woman leads him to try and break free, with dramatic consequences.”
Lloyd Webber’s score includes “With One Look,” “As If We Never Said Goodbye,” and “Perfect Year.”
The creative team also includes choreographer Stephen Mear, scenic designer James Noone, costume designer Tracy Christensen, lighting designer Mark Henderson, sound designer Mick Potter, wig, hair and makeup designers Dave Bova and J. Jared Janas, fight directors Rick Sordelet and Christian Kelly-Sordelet, music director/conductor Kristen Blodgette, and associate director Matt Cowart. Anthony Powell designed Close's costumes.
Multiple Oscar nominee Close is a three-time Tony winner for her performances in The Real Thing, Death and the Maiden, and Sunset Boulevard.
Sunset Boulevard is produced by Paul Blake and Mike Bosner by special arrangement with Really Useful Group Ltd.
Tickets are currently on sale through June 25. Performances are Wednesdays at 2 PM and 8 PM, Thursdays at 7 PM, Fridays at 8 PM, Saturdays at 2 PM and 8 PM, and Sundays at 3 PM. Tickets are $65-$199 and are available by calling Ticketmaster at (877) 250-2929 or online at Ticketmaster.com/sunset.