Titanic star Michael Cerveris will be taking over the title role in Hedwig and the Angry Inch. As first reported by Playbill On-Line, Cerveris will step into John Cameron Mitchell's platform shoes July 8 to Aug. 4.
Cerveris, who plays ship architect Thomas Andrews in Titanic, was quoted on his website as saying "It's a truly wonderful rock 'n' roll theatre piece -- one I've seen a number of times already just because I liked it and John's performance so much." Mitchell will use the month off to vacation.
Hedwig was written by its star, John Cameron Mitchell (book), and Stephen Trask (music and lyrics). Mitchell plays the title singer, an obscure and tortured German-American transsexual rock singer, who tells her darkly comic story while ostensibly performing a concert. The Angry Inch, her back-up band, is actually Trask's rock combo Cheater, a staple at such downtown New York clubs as CBGB's and Mercury Lounge. The musical has been playing to enthusiastic crowds at the Jane Street Theatre since Feb. 14.
Ironically for Cerveris, the Hotel Riverview, in which the Jane Street Theatre is housed, served in 1912 as a shelter for the surviving crew of the Titanic. Thomas Andrews went down with the ship.
For information on the show, call (212) 239-6200. Hedwig may soon be headed for the silver screen. According to an article in Variety, Danny DeVito's Jersey Shore and other studios are interested in turning the musical into a movie. Jim Freydberg, one of the show's producers, wouldn't comment except to say the several independent studios had shown interest.
In other Hedwig news, the show's producers are holding a non-Equity open casting call at the Jane Street Theatre, on June 24 at 11 AM. They are searching for new Hedwigs to portray the tortured songstress in national and international productions. They are seeking male actors, age 18-25, with strong tenor/rock voices. Applicants should come with a prepared rock ballad.
-- By Robert Simonson