Charles Shaughnessy, of "The Nanny," Is Evil Toilet Mogul in Bway's Urinetown, Sept. 9

By Kenneth Jones
04 Sep 2003

Charles Shaughnessy.
Charles Shaughnessy.

Charles Shaughnessy, who played Broadway producer Maxwell Sheffield on TV's "The Nanny," will make his Broadway debut as toilet magnate Caldwell B. Cladwell in Urinetown: The Musical starting Sept. 9.

The three-time Tony Award-winning musical launched in September 2001 at The Henry Miller following a developmental run Off-Broadway and an earlier staging in the New York International Fringe Festival.

Alvin Epstein was announced to take over the role of Cladwell starting in late August, but that never transpired. Don Richard played the role in recent weeks, after the Aug. 17 exit of original (and Tony-nommed) Cladwell John Cullum.

Born and raised in London, Shaughnessy started acting in school plays while in grade school but after graduating from Eton College, got his B.A. in law at the Magdalene College of Cambridge University. While at Cambridge he joined the famous "Footlights Revue" comedy group. Upon graduation, Shaughnessy returned to acting, and enrolled in drama school in London. After a year touring in repertory, he was cast in the Agatha Christie television series, "Partners in Crime." He then won the lead role in the BBC drama series "Jury." After moving to Los Angeles, his theatre credits included roles at The Mark Taper Forum, the LAAT, and the Ahmanson (where he appeared opposite Alan Bates in A Patriot for Me). He was then cast in the role of Shane Donovan in the daytime series "Days of Our Lives." He stayed with the series for eight years and won three Soap Opera Digest Awards.



He later starred for six seasons as Broadway producer Maxwell Sheffield in the CBS show, "The Nanny," opposite Fran Drescher. Recent credits include the feature film "Denial" with Jason Alexander and Patrick Dempsey and several TV movies, including "A Kiss So Deadly" with Charlotte Ross, "Dayo" with Elijah Wood, The Disney Channel's "Mom's Got A Date With A Vampire" with Caroline Rhea and "Get a Clue" with Lindsay Lohan. He won an Emmy Award for his voice-work in The Disney Channel's animated series, "Stanley."

Urinetown won three 2002 Tony Awards, including Best Book, Best Score and Best Director, and three 2002 Outer Critics Circle Awards, including Best Musical, Best Featured Actress in a Musical (Spencer Kayden) and Best Director of a Musical (John Rando), plsu two 2002 Lucille Lortel Awards, including Best Musical and Best Choreography (John Carrafa), the 2002 Drama League Award for Best Musical, two 2001 Obie Awards, for authors Greg Kotis and Mark Hollmann and choreographer John Carrafa and the TDF Young Master Award for costume designers Gregory Gale and Jonathan Bixby.

On Sept. 9, Urinetown's national tour launches at the Buell Theatre in Denver, CO. The production originated at The Geary Theatre in San Francisco in an arrangement between the commercial producers and the not-for-profit American Conservatory Theatre.

On Broadway, the darkly comic show features Carolee Carmello as Penelope Pennywise, Luther Creek as Bobby Strong, Spencer Kayden as Little Sally, Jeff McCarthy as Officer Lockstock and Amy Spanger as Hope Cladwell, with David Beach, Rachel Coloff, Rick Crom, John Deyle, Victor W. Hawks, Ken Jennings, Stacie Morgain Lewis, Daniel Marcus, James Moye, Don Richard, Kristie Dale Sanders, Lawrence E. Street, Kay Walbye, Amanda Watkins and Kirsten Wyatt.

Performances are Tuesday at 7 PM, Wednesday through Saturday at 8 PM, with matinees Wednesday and Saturday at 2 PM and Sunday at 3 PM. For tickets, call TeleCharge at (212) 239-6200 or visit The Henry Miller box office 124 West 43rd Street, between Sixth Avenue and Broadway.

Visit Urinetown online at www.urinetown.com.