PLAYBILL.COM'S THEATRE WEEK IN REVIEW, Dec. 7-13: American Psycho and Heathers Slash Their Ways to the Stage and NBC Will Hear the Sound of More Musicals

By Robert Simonson
13 Dec 2013


Linda Lavin

Actress Linda Lavin and playwright Nicky Silver are in a relationship.

Artistic relationship, that is. Lavin, who had a success starring in Silver's The Lyons — both Off-Broadway and on — will return to the Vineyard Theatre in 2014 to star in the playwright's next outing, Too Much Sun.

Directed by Mark Brokaw, previews will begin May 1, 2014, prior to an official opening May 20.

Silver's caustic, comic plays have long offered meaty roles for veteran stage actresses (Kelly Bishop in Pterodactyls, Jean Smart in Fit to Be Tied, Betty Buckley in The Eros Trilogy, Penny Fuller in Beautiful Child), but Lavin is Silver's first repeat interpreter. In Too Much Sun, she plays Audrey Langham, a celebrated actress whose life unravels while preparing for a new production of Medea, causing her to retreat her married daughter's summer house by the sea.


Reviews may have been mixed for The Sound of Music Live!, but the telecast's excellent ratings spoke louder to NBC. The network announced this week that it has committed to airing another family-friendly musical during the 2014 holiday season. Craig Zadan and Neil Meron will again produce.

In addition, NBC will rebroadcast The Sound of Music Live! Dec. 14 at 8 PM.

Given NBC's good mood over the special, they probably took the comments of Francoise von Trapp, the daughter Maria von Trapp's stepson Rupert, in stride. "For all of you who clamored for public apologies for criticizing Carrie Underwood, I'm sorry to disappoint you, because you're not going to get one," she wrote on her blog. "I stand by what I said in last year's post. She's a talented country music star, but she is not an actress. And I think she proved that to the world last night. She kicked-ass on Lonely Goatherd — yes the girl can yodel. But beyond that I found the overall production to be completely underwhelming and mediocre at best. I kept wondering why NBC would settle for a community theater quality production."

Not one of her favorite things, I guess.