Will Encores! Follies Find Its Way to Broadway?

News   Will Encores! Follies Find Its Way to Broadway?
 
After the rave reviews that the City Center Encores! production of Follies received — it played the Manhattan venue Feb. 8-12 — there is much talk that the Stephen Sondheim-James Goldman musical may find a home on Broadway.

Emily Fletcher, Michael McGrath and Kristen Beth William perfom
Emily Fletcher, Michael McGrath and Kristen Beth William perfom "Buddy's Blues" from Follies. Photo by Joan Marcus

The New York Times reports that Fran and Barry Weissler — the producers who helped bring the long-running Encores! revival of Chicago to Broadway — may be interested in doing the same with Follies. Weissler, however, refused to comment to the Times about that possibility.

The New York Post also suggests a possible scenario for a transfer. Should The Producers close this spring, Follies could play a limited engagement at the St. James Theatre prior to the arrival of the next Mel Brooks musical Young Frankenstein. If that were to happen, the role of Phyllis — played by two-time Tony winner Donna Murphy — would have to be recast, as Murphy is committed to starring opposite Michael Cerveris in the new musical LoveMusik. (The Post also says that "Chicago" director Rob Marshall and "Dreamgirls" director Bill Condon are both interested in bringing Follies to the silver screen.)

The City Center Encores! production of Follies was directed and choreographed by Casey Nicholaw. In addition to Murphy, the cast boasted Victoria Clark, Victor Garber, Michael McGrath, Christine Baranski, Mimi Hines and Joanne Worley, among others.

Follies, with songs by Stephen Sondheim and book by James Goldman, was originally directed by Harold Prince on Broadway in 1971. Since then, it has received a legendary star-filled concert at Lincoln Center in 1985, a Roundabout revival on Broadway directed by Matthew Warchus in 2001, and numerous regional mountings, including a Paper Mill Playhouse engagement that featured Donna McKechnie and the late Ann Miller.

Song titles in the Encores! production included "Beautiful Girls," "Don't Look at Me," "Waiting for the Girls Upstairs," "Rain on the Roof," "Ah, Paris!," "Broadway Baby," "The Road You Didn't Take," "Bolero d'Amour," "In Buddy's Eyes," "Who's That Woman?," "I'm Still Here," "Too Many Mornings," "The Right Girl," "One More Kiss," "Could I Leave You?," "Loveland," "You're Gonna Love Tomorrow," "Love Will See Us Through," "The God-Why-Don't-You-Love-Me Blues," "Losing My Mind," "The Story of Lucie and Jessie" and "Live, Laugh, Love."

Katie Klaus and Colin Donnell (Background), Victoria Clark and Victor Garber in the Encores! production of <i>Follies</i>.
Katie Klaus and Colin Donnell (Background), Victoria Clark and Victor Garber in the Encores! production of Follies. Photo by Joan Marcus
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