Tony Winner Alan Cumming Talks His New NYC Bar and His Upcoming Turn in Battle of the Sexes

Broadway News   Tony Winner Alan Cumming Talks His New NYC Bar and His Upcoming Turn in Battle of the Sexes The actor famous for Cabaret spills the details about the opening of his East Village hotspot and what to expect from the film co-starring Emma Stone.
Alan Cumming
Alan Cumming

Tony-winning actor Alan Cumming may be currently absent from the theatre, but he is still busy making art. On September 14, Cumming spoke to The Today Show’s Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotbe about his many projects, including the upcoming movie Battle of the Sexes (out September 21), his recent children’s book The Adventures of Honey & Leon, and his new East Village bar Club Cumming, which just opened its doors this week.

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A friend of women’s tennis champion and women’s rights icon Billie Jean King in real life, Cumming plays King’s confidante, Ted Tinling, in the upcoming film Battle of the Sexes. Oscar winner Emma Stone—with whom Cumming shared the Broadway stage in the most recent revival of Cabaret—plays King in the film as she embarks on the famous 1973 tennis match known as the Battle of the Sexes.

These were tennis matches between a man and a woman, who usually do not face off against one another in the professional tennis world. After Bobby Riggs beat Margaret Court and taunted female tennis players, King took him on and beat him. In the film, Cumming’s Tinling is not only the fashion designer for the women’s tennis team, he is King’s confidante.

“I had no idea about how much of an effect that Billie Jean King, this match, had on women’s rights,” said Cumming on Today. “It would be such a different world if she’d lost.”

Cumming also spoke about his new children’s book, The Adventures of Honey & Leon, illustrated by his husband, Grant Shaffer. The pair celebrated the launch at Cumming’s new nightlife venture: Club Cumming.

“The first night we had a party to celebrate the book,” said Cumming. “Last night, there was a man playing the piano early on and then a DJ goes on. Then a couple of friends dropped by. I got my friend Lance, who plays piano for me, and my friend Eleanor, who plays the cello, we sang a couple of songs. And then Amanda Palmer, she dropped by and she sang. Then a girl got her viola out and started playing.”

To hear the full interview, watch the video above.

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