The upcoming Broadway premiere of Noel Coward's Waiting in the Wings has added yet another notable, veteran actress to its roster -- one that already includes Rosemary Harris, Elizabeth Wilson, Patricia Conolly, Dana Ivey and Lauren Bacall. Rosemary Murphy, last on Broadway in A Delicate Balance, will join the cast as another resident of "The Wings," the retirement home for stage actresses where the play takes place.
Murphy, who also starred in the original mounting of A Delicate Balance, co-starred opposite Philip Bosco In a 1982 Roundabout staging of The Learned Ladies. In 1980, she played Mrs. Borkman to E.G. Marshall's John Gabriel Borkman at Circle in the Square.
Also newly added to the Wings cast is the ubiquitous Simon Jones, whose recent Broadway assignments have included The Herbal Bed and You Never Can Tell. Jones will play the manager of "The Wings." Barnard Hughes, whose credits include Da and the 1967 musical, How Now Dow Jones, was also recently added to the Wings cast.
Wilson and Harris were co-stars with Murphy in the recent Lincoln Center Theater revival of Albee's A Delicate Balance, with Harris netting a Tony nomination. Wilson's other credits include Morning's at Seven, Little Murders and You Can't Take It With You. Conolly starred opposite Maggie Smith in a London mounting of Vita & Virginia and in Coward's Hay Fever in her native Australia. Ivey's many credits include Alfred Uhry's Driving Miss Daisy and The Last Night of Ballyhoo, Christopher Durang's Sex and Longing and Playwrights Horizon's recent The Uneasy Chair. This summer she appeared in the premiere of Horton Foote's The Death of Papa at CT's Hartford Stage.
Harris starred on Broadway in An Inspector Calls and won a 1966 Tony for her performance in The Lion in Winter. Bacall has occasionally graced Broadway, most notably in the musicals Woman of the Year and Applause. She won Tony Awards for both. She is still best known, however, for her early film roles opposite Humphrey Bogart, including "To Have and Have Not" and "Key Largo."
Waiting in the Wings has never been produced in America. Broadway previews begin Dec. 3. The show's Broadway opening, on Dec. 16 -- preceded by a Boston tryout at the Colonial Theatre, Nov. 13-28 -- will coincide with the 100th birthday of its author, playwright-composer singer-actor-bon vivant Noel Coward. Coward, who died in 1973, is the author of such works as Private Lives, Hay Fever, Present Laughter, Design for Living and The Vortex.
Alexander H. Cohen, Chase Mishkin, Steven M. Levy, and Leonard Soloway produce. Designing the show are Ray Klausen (set), Alvin Colt (costumes), Ken Billington (lighting) and Peter Fitzgerald (sound).
Tickets are onsale via Telecharge (212) 239-6200. No word yet on when the Walter Kerr box office will open, since The Weir, which is currently playing there, has yet to announce a closing date.