VINTAGE PLAYBILL: Harvey, Starring James Stewart, 1948
12 Jun 2012
Elwood P. Dowd has returned to Broadway in the third Main Stem production of Harvey, which officially opens June 14 at Studio 54 starring Jim Parsons. To celebrate the opening, the Playbill Vault highlights a vintage Playbill, dated March 29, 1948, from the original run of Mary Chase's Pulitzer Prize-winning play.
Harvey premiered on Broadway Nov. 1, 1944, starring vaudevillian Frank Fay. In 1947 Fay took leave for a seven-week vacation, and producer Brock Pemberton brought in James Stewart, by then an established film star, as his replacement. Stewart's celebrity packed houses for the entire seven weeks and breathed life into the play's run.
Stewart later returned to the production for an extended engagement, and his performance was preserved on film in the movie version of Harvey, which was released in 1950. He returned to his Broadway roots nearly 30 years later for the first revival of Harvey, which co-starred Helen Hayes.
Holed up in a seedy motel on the edge of the Mojave Desert, two former lovers unpack the deep secrets and dark desires of their tangled relationship, passionately tearing each other apart. Led by director Daniel Aukin (Back Back Back at MTC, 4,000 Miles), Tony winner Nina Arianda (Venus in Fur at MTC, Born Yesterday) and Sam Rockwell (A Behanding in Spokane, The Way Way Back) bring an explosive intensity to Sam Shepard’s (Buried Child, True West) landmark myth of the new Wild West.