By David Gewirtzman
and Ernio Hernandez, Robert Viagas
31 May 2014
1978 Waiting for Godot is produced at the Leperq Space of the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Walter D. Asmus directs Samuel Beckett’s own English version of his play. Austin Pendleton assumes the role of Estragon for this BAM Theater Company production.
1979 Liv Ullmann won't be forgotten as she headlines at the Majestic Theatre in I Remember Mama. The Richard Rodgers-Martin Charnin musical with book by Thomas Meehan is directed by Cy Feuer. It will play 40 previews and 108 performances before closing Sep. 2.
1984 John Malkovich and the Steppenwolf Theatre Company of Chicago bring Lanford Wilson's Balm in Gilead to New York City at the Circle Repertory. Terry Kinney, Tanya Berezin, Gary Sinise and Glenne Headly star in the play set in a Broadway coffee shop under the direction of Malkovich.
1998 Natalie Portman, making her stage debut as the star of the Broadway revival of The Diary of Anne Frank, leaves the production at the Music Box Theatre to return to her movie career and be immortalized as Princess Leia's mother in the "Star Wars" prequel films. Nathalie Paulding replaces her as Anne.
2002 Performances begin in London for Bombay Dreams, the musical set in the world of Indian cinema. The composer is A.R. Rahman and the producer is Andrew Lloyd Webber. It will open on Broadway two years later.
2003 Craig Lucas and Adam Guettel's musical The Light in the Piazza makes its world premiere at Seattle's Intiman Theatre. It will open on Broadway in spring 2005 and win Tony Awards for Best Score and Best Actress in a Musical (Victoria Clark).
2013 Jean Stapleton, a seasoned stage and film actress who found lasting fame as the dimwitted and big-hearted wife of Archie Bunker on the 1970s social sitcom "All in the Family," dies at age 90. Ms. Stapleton's Broadway appearances included roles in the original productions of Damn Yankees, Bells Are Ringing, Juno and Funny Girl.