PLAYBILL.COM'S THEATRE WEEK IN REVIEW, Oct. 12-18: Roundabout Enjoys a New Company and The Winslow Boy Wows Audiences

By Robert Simonson
18 Oct 2013

Roger Rees and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio
Photo by Joan Marcus
But producers Jeffrey Richards, Jerry Frankel, Jam Theatricals, Stacey Mindich, Susan Gallin and Mary Lu Roffe apparently think Eno's new work, The Realistic Joneses, which had its premiere at Yale Repertory Theatre last year, is commercial enough. And they have every right to feel that way given the cast they've assembled: Michael C. Hall, Toni Collette, Marisa Tomei and Tracy Letts. Between the four, you've got a couple of Tonys, an Oscar, a few Golden Globes, a bunch of Emmy nominations and who knows what else. None of the four are superstars, but put them together and you've probably got an audience.

So, as to plot. Well, Eno plays don't really have plots, really; they're more like enacted ideas. Joneses is about about two suburban couples who share much more than a surname. The show is expected in early 2014. No theatre has been named.

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That Roundabout Theatre revival of the old Terence Rattigan play about the kid who steals the five-shilling postal note — yeah, that's going to be the critical hit of the season!



That's probably what most Broadway cynics were thinking when the nonprofit programmed the rather unexciting choice of The Winslow Boy for the fall. But the cynics had to eat their words! The Lindsay Posner-directed production of the 1940s drama opened to admiring reviews.

The Times called the revival splendid. "While it would give away the game to divulge whether the Winslow family’s patience is finally rewarded," the paper wrote, "I can firmly state that the audience’s ultimately is." Variety crowed, "Like some forgotten treasure found in the attic, the Old Vic's radiant revival…practically glows in the dark." AP cheered, "The Roundabout Theatre Company has wisely imported much of the show from The Old Vic Theatre in London, including a handsome set and costumes by Peter McKintosh as well as Lindsay Posner's crisp direction, which finds real humor in a play where jeopardy, though localized, is very present."

Roger Rees, who plays the stubbornly principled, but misguided, family head, meanwhile, received some of his best reviews in a long while. "Roger Rees is excellent as the Winslow patriarch," said AP, "a man whose body is beginning to betray him but whose dry humor and compassion stays intact." The Times opined that he "gives an impeccably judged performance in the central role of Arthur, a man who appears to wear his ethical rectitude lightly, until it is challenged when his son is expelled from the naval academy where he has been studying."

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Broadway gets plenty of transfers from London. From Paris, not so much.

But one's on the way from the City of Light. A new world-premiere stage adaptation of An American In Paris, directed and choreographed by Christopher Wheeldon, will arrive on Broadway in 2015 following a late 2014 premiere at the Théâtre du Châtelet (that old tryout house!), producers announced.

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