McArdle told Playbill.com that she will step into the role of the eccentric Mame April 17-May 19, 2013, at Pennsylvania's Media Theatre for the Performing Arts and, subsequently, for three weeks at the Bucks County Playhouse in New Hope, PA.
Broadway's original Annie said she has never appeared in the Jerry Herman musical, but "I think it's going to be a really, really good fit."
"I was actually booked to do Hello, Dolly! on a 30-city tour, and then they called me really late in the game and said, 'We're using Sally Struthers.' I was like, 'Okay. Andrea or Sally?' There's a very big difference," McArdle said with a laugh. "I've seen her do that role, and she's fantastic in the role—I've seen her several times. I think I'm actually much better suited for Mame than Hello, Dolly! at this point. Maybe Dolly could be 10 years away, but I'm reading the Patrick Dennis book right now, and I can't put it down."
Mame, based on Patrick Dennis' novel "Auntie Mame," features a score by Jerry Herman and a book by Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee. The original Broadway production opened in May 1966 at the Winter Garden Theatre with Angela Lansbury as Mame and Bea Arthur as Vera Charles. Both Lansbury and Arthur won Tony Awards for their work. A subsequent film version cast Lucille Ball as the vivacious Mame. The classic Herman score includes such tunes as "If He Walked Into My Life," "It's Today," "Open a New Window," "Mame," "Bosom Buddies" and "We Need a Little Christmas."
Andrea McArdle made her Broadway debut in the original 1977 production of Annie for which she received a Tony nomination for Best Actress in a Musical. Her other Main Stem credits include Les Misérables, Starlight Express, Beauty and the Beast and State Fair. McArdle also played Rose in a production of Gypsy at Texas' Bay Area Houston Ballet & Theatre. Her screen credits include "Annie" and "Rainbow." She will release two new recordings on the Broadway Records label. Playbill.com will publish a full interview with McArdle in the coming weeks.
For more information visit www.mediatheatre.org.