PLAYBILL.COM'S THEATRE WEEK IN REVIEW, July 20-25: Killer Joe Finds A Time to Kill, Betrayal Shows Box-Office Potential and Hugh Jackman May Dazzle as Houdini

By Robert Simonson
26 Jul 2013

Ruthie Ann Miles in Here Lies Love
Photo by Joan Marcus
According to the New York Times, Public artistic director Oskar Eustis said in an interview that he hoped to announce new plans in the next month for the show, which is the work of the alternative-cool trio of former Talking Head David Byrne, DJ-producer-rapper Fatboy Slim and director Alex Timbers.

The show's set designer, David Korins, and New York architect Mitchell Kurtz, who has worked on previous Public projects, have developed designs for four — count 'em — different space configurations that might fit the musical. Broadway is one possibility. However, the musical requires a non-conventional playing space capable of housing multiple moving platforms, which swirl about the audience. So who knows? Is the Hayden Planetarium available?

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How about a little art imitating art?



Bombshell, the fake Marilyn Monroe musical that was at the heart of the now-canceled NBC musical series "Smash," may soon become a flesh-and-blood reality.

Marc Shaiman, who co-wrote the score for the fictitious musical with Scott Wittman, told The Hollywood Reporter that a charitable organization is interested in mounting a concert featuring songs from Bombshell.

"A concert could feature the cast and additional performers from Broadway. That would be a wonderful way for the show to live on," Shaiman told the industry paper.

It's early, but, what with its rabid fan base, "Smash" may end up having an afterlife along the lines of "The Fugitive" and "Twin Peaks," similar small-screen bombs that continued to fascinate the public decades after their cancellations.

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For those out there who narrow-mindedly think of Benedick and Beatrice, the sparring, down-with-love protagonists of Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing, as two robust young lovers in the prime of life, director Mark Rylance is here to tell you how wrong you are.

Rylance, a contrarian by nature, has cast the long-in-the-tooth James Earl Jones and Vanessa Redgrave as the leads in his new staging of the comedy, which will begin performances at London's Old Vic Sept. 7. This means this particular Benedick and Beatrice have been ignoring Cupid's call much longer than previous incarnations of the characters.

The two actors were previously paired in the recent Broadway production of Driving Miss Daisy.

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In more London theatre news, the new production of King Lear, which will star Simon Russell Beale in the title role under the direction of Sam Mendes, has confirmed further casting. It will begin performances at the National Theatre's Olivier Theatre in London in January 2014.

Also now cast are Kate Fleetwood as Goneril, Anna Maxwell Martin as Regan, Adrian Scarborough as the Fool, Stanley Townsend as Kent and Olivia Vinall as Cordelia.

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Rebecca has refused to completely die.

The scandal-beset, much-delayed Broadway musical based on the Daphne du Maurier literary romantic thriller, is now looking toward a 2014 Broadway arrival, producer Ben Sprecher told Playbill.com.

Sprecher previously stated that funding for the $15-16 million musical had to be completed by the end of June, at which point rights to the project were to revert back to VBW, the Austrian company that holds live stage rights to the property. In April, Sprecher said that he had $8 million in place and was optimistic about identifying parties capable of providing the remaining capital. The late-June deadline passed without an announcement of Rebecca's capitalization or dates of a Broadway run.