Stephanie J. Block (The Pirate Queen, 9 to 5: The Musical), who stepped into the tap shoes of Foster in Anything Goes in fall 2011, when Foster was filming a TV pilot called "Bunheads," will permanently take over the role of Reno Sweeney on March 15. Foster's pilot, a drama created by "Gilmore Girls" creator Amy Sherman-Palladino, has "gone to series," as they say, for ABC Family.
"Bunheads" concerns a Las Vegas showgirl (Foster) who marries and moves to her husband's small town to work at her mother-in-law's dance studio.
Playing a role previously performed on Broadway by Ethel Merman (1934) and Patti LuPone (1987), Foster sang and danced her way through some of the most beloved music in the Cole Porter songbook, including the title number (featuring eight minutes of vigorous tap-dancing with Foster front-and-center), "I Get a Kick Out of You," "Blow, Gabriel, Blow," "You're the Top" and "Friendship." Her performance is preserved on the revival's original cast album, available at PlaybillStore.com.
Foster told Playbill.com, "This entire experience has just been beyond. It turned out to be more than I ever expected. The fact that I can now call Joel Grey a friend! I mean come on! I never in a million years thought I'd be pals with Joel Grey. I feel so blessed and lucky for my entire Anything Goes experience and for getting to work with these incredible people. I will miss it more than I can express."
Of crossing over into other media, she added, "I'm so excited about my new adventure — and I hope to have a very full and varied career. I've always admired actors who do theatre, television and film. I'm looking for things to challenge me creatively and artistically. I really believe in this next project and really believe in its creator and writer Amy Sherman Palladino. To work with her is a dream come true." Foster won her first Tony as Best Actress in a Musical for playing the title role in Thoroughly Modern Millie. She has made guest appearances on the television series "Flight of the Conchords," "Johnny and the Sprites" and NBC's "Law & Order: SVU." Foster was also Tony-nominated for her performances in Little Women, The Drowsy Chaperone and Shrek, and was also seen in Young Frankenstein, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Annie, Grease and Les Miserables, and in Off-Broadway's Trust at Second Stage Theatre.
Buy this Limited Collector's Edition
The Tony Award-winning Best Revival (2011) of Anything Goes is directed and choreographed by 2011 Choreography Tony winner Kathleen Marshall.
Tony and Academy Award winner Joel Grey will continue to perform the role of Moonface Martin through April 29.
Tickets are on sale through Sunday, Sept. 9. A national tour launches this fall.
The Anything Goes cast currently features John McMartin as "Elisha Whitney," Julie Halston as "Evangeline Harcourt," Bill English (subbing in March for Colin Donnell) as "Billy Crocker," Erin Mackey as "Hope Harcourt," Robert Petkoff as "Lord Evelyn Oakleigh," Jessica Stone as "Erma," Walter Charles as "Captain," Robert Creighton as "Purser," Andrew Cao as "Luke," and Raymond J. Lee as "John." Additional cast members include Lawrence Alexander, Leslie Becker, Brandon Bieber, Ward Billeisen, Daniel J. Edwards, Kearran Giovanni, Justin Greer, Derek Hanson, Tari Kelly, Michelle Loucadoux, Shina Ann Morris, Kevin Munhall, Mary Michael Patterson, Hayley Podschun, Brandon Rubendall, William Ryall, Jennifer Savelli, Vanessa Sonon.
Anything Goes, the musical comedy set aboard a transatlantic cruise ship, is a revision of the 1934 Broadway musical that had music & lyrics by Cole Porter and original book by P.G. Wodehouse & Guy Bolton and Howard Lindsay & Russel Crouse. The new book is by Timothy Crouse and John Weidman.
Visit anythinggoesonbroadway.com or telecharge.com/ag or roundabouttheatre.org.