By Andrew Gans
23 Dec 2013
|Photo by Richard Termine|
Directed by Tony winner Joe Mantello (Wicked, Assassins, Take Me Out), the play cast Midler as legendary Hollywood agent Sue Mengers (1932-2011), who represented Streisand for many years.
In a statement issued to the Los Angeles Times, Streisand said, "It was a wonderful performance. Bette made me laugh in the same way that Sue did and she touched my heart as Sue did. It isn't the whole story of course. Some of the facts are not true, but it was a very enjoyable evening."
Streisand had visited Midler following the performance, and Midler posted on Twitter Dec. 7, "Okay! Barbra Streisand came to the show! And she liked it!! I was so thrilled. AND relieved!!" Midler Tweeted Dec. 23, "I finished Sue Mengers before she finished me! 'I'llEatYouLast' closed yesterday; thanks to everyone at the Geffen who made it so memorable!"
Broadway previews for I'll Eat You Last began April 5 prior to an official opening April 24. In just over eight weeks at the Booth, the production recouped its initial investment of $2.4 million. Upon closing, the limited engagement played 18 previews and 71 regular performances.
The intermissionless work is set in 1981 in the living room of Mengers' Beverly Hills home.
The creative team included three-time Tony Award winner Scott Pask (scenic design), Academy Award winner Ann Roth (costume design), three-time Tony nominee Hugh Vanstone (lighting design; recreated by Craig Stelzenmuller), Kathy Fabian (props) and Drama Desk Award winner Fitz Patton (sound design).
Bette Midler has earned three Grammys, four Golden Globes, three Emmys, a Tony Award, and sold 30 million records worldwide in a career that spans more than four decades. She has played film roles in "The Rose," "Down and Out in Beverly Hills," "Ruthless People," "Beaches" and "The First Wives Club," among many others. Midler made her Broadway debut in the chorus of Fiddler on the Roof. Other stage performances include Tony Award-winning Clams on the Half Shell; Experience the Divine, for which she holds the all-time record for a six-week engagement at Radio City Music Hall, The Divine Miss Millennium Tour; Kiss My Brass; and The Showgirl Must Go On at The Colosseum in Caesars Palace. Outside the spotlight, she is the founder of the New York Restoration Project (nyrp.org), a non-profit organization that revitalizes abandoned and neglected public spaces across New York City.