By Kenneth Jones
28 Feb 2002
Producers Elliott Martin and Lewis Allen will wait until summer to open a revival of Herb Gardner's I'm Not Rappaport on Broadway, leaving the Booth Theatre open wide in the final weeks of the Tony eligibility period.
Speculation in the community has another work, Paper Doll, making its Broadway debut at the Booth before the end of the Tony Award eligibility period. Barbara J. Zitwer and Mark Hampton's comedy about the lavish life of Jacqueline Susann begins a run at the Reynolds Theatre in North Carolina Feb. 28, with Marlo Thomas and F. Murray Abraham. A spokesman for Paper Doll had no immediate word about the possible booking and Wreghitt was not available.
Another scenario has Bea Arthur on Broadway: Just Between Friends, the current tenant of the Booth, sticking with the intimate playhouse. Her solo show (with Billy Goldenberg at piano) has already been extended three weeks.
Rappaport producer Martin told Playbill On-Line he didn't want to rush the process of giving Rappaport a proper nest. The staging by Daniel Sullivan has played three nonprofit regional venues with Judd Hirsch and Ben Vereen. It runs through March 24 at Paper Mill: The State Theatre of New Jersey.
"This business of rushing to open two days before the cutoff of the Tony Awards is kind of hysterical," Martin told Playbill On-Line. "Waiting until summer was a more propitious thing to do."
Martin said he does not yet have a theatre for the play. There is a tradition for a post-Tony Awards opening for Rappaport. It opened Off-Broadway June 5, 1985, and moved to Broadway in November 1985, waiting six months before snagging the Best Play Tony Award in 1986.