History Boys Are Inspired by a New Hector July 18-23

News   History Boys Are Inspired by a New Hector July 18-23
Some of the school faculty of the Tony Award-winning hit play, The History Boys, is currently off for summer vacation.

Desmond Barrit steps in as Hector in The History Boys.
Desmond Barrit steps in as Hector in The History Boys. Photo by Manuel Harlan

In the case of Tony Award winner Richard Griffiths, he's having a working vacation: He'll be absent from the Broadhurst Theatre July 18-23, owing to his filming schedule of the next Harry Potter movie. Griffiths plays Harry's sour uncle in the series.

Taking his place as the charismatic, broken British high school teacher, Hector, in the play is National Theatre actor Desmond Barrit, who played the role to acclaim in London.

Producers recently announced an extension of the Broadway production, to Oct. 1, adding a month onto the play's limited run.

In addition to Griffiths' absence, Tony-winner Frances de la Tour and Clive Merrison (who plays the salty Headmaster) are out of the show, but return Aug. 22 and will stick with it to the end of the New York run.

* On June 11, Griffiths earned the Tony Award for Best Actor in a Play, and De La Tour won for Best Featured Actress in a Play. The History Boys won the Best Play Tony Award.

The role of Mrs. Lintott is now being played by Maggie Steed and the role of Headmaster is played by Malcolm Sinclair. Both actors previously played these roles at the National Theatre in London.

Alan Bennett's The History Boys, directed by two-time Tony Award-winner Nicholas Hytner, premiered at the National Theatre of Great Britain on May 18, 2004, where it quickly became a sell-out smash hit.

The Broadway production (winner of six 2006 Tonys) follows engagements around the world. The History Boys is Alan Bennett's first Broadway play in more than 30 years, since Habeas Corpus in 1975.

A UK national tour is expected to launch shortly.

The British actors in The History Boys are appearing with the permission of Actors' Equity Association.

"The History Boys is the thrilling comedy of eight bright, funny students trying to get into colleges and the year that influenced the rest of their lives," according to production notes. "Guiding them are a maverick English teacher, a headmaster obsessed with results and a strong-willed history teacher resistant to change. …The History Boys is about staff-room rivalry, adolescent anarchy and the role of education in our lives."

Performances are Tuesday through Saturday at 8 PM, with matinees Wednesday and Saturday at 2 PM, Sunday at 3 PM at the Broadhurst Theatre (235 West 44th Street).

Tickets are available through Telecharge.com or by calling (212) 239-6200, and at the Broadhurst Theatre box office (235 West 44th Street, between Broadway and Eighth Avenue).

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