In Case You Missed It: A Psycho Is On Its Way and Annie Baker is the Queen of Off-Broadway

News   In Case You Missed It: A Psycho Is On Its Way and Annie Baker is the Queen of Off-Broadway
Who is going to have reputation as a psycho around Broadway this season? Benjamin Walker is.

Walker, who starred as a kind of Presidential psycho in Broadway's Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, will play serial killer Patrick Bateman in the Broadway debut of American Psycho. The new musical by Duncan Sheik and Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa will make its New York bow Feb. 19, 2016, prior to an official opening March 21 at a Shubert theatre to be announced. Rupert Goold, who directed the critically-acclaimed London premiere, directs with choreography by Lynne Page.

Benjamin Walker in <i>Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson</i>
Benjamin Walker in Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson Photo by Joan Marcus

In other Sheik news, Marlee Matlin, who won the Academy Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role for "Children of a Lesser God" (the only deaf performer to win the award and, at 21, the youngest to date), has joined the cast of the Broadway revival of Spring Awakening. Matlin will play Adult Woman.


The original Broadway cast album of the new Lin-Manuel Miranda musical Hamilton will be released this fall. Normally, this would not be news. Even in today’s lean market for musical recordings, there is usually some record label willing to step forward and preserve a show’s score for posterity. And Hamilton is not just any old musical.

A scene from <i>Hamilton</i>
A scene from Hamilton Photo by Joan Marcus

What makes it news is that Hamilton isn’t being recorded for an indy label specializing in theatre, but by the mighty Atlantic Records. Furthermore, the two-disc album will be given some star quality by being produced by Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson and Tariq "Black Thought" Trotter, founding members of the hip-hop band and "Tonight" show combo, The Roots. "Ten minutes into Hamilton, though, I was just so stunned. It was such a sucker punch," Questlove said. Trotter added that the musical and it's varied, contemporary score "can be your introduction to hip-hop — on Broadway. And it's a valid one. It's a credible one." (I'd say it's a good bet Hamilton will be booked on Jimmy Fallon.)

The acclaimed new musical that fuses the worlds of contemporary and classic to tell the story of America's Founding Father Alexander Hamilton, arrived on Broadway July 13 at the Richard Rodgers Theatre. (Recent attendees included President Obama.) The album will be available for pre-order beginning Aug. 7, the day after the production's official Broadway opening.


Playwright Annie Baker had a good week.

Signature Theatre has announced that the world premiere of Baker's John, which begins previews July 22 and is helmed by Fun Home director Sam Gold, will extend another week.

Annie Baker with director Sam Gold
Annie Baker with director Sam Gold Photo by Fred Hayes

The news came after the recent announcement that the remounting of The Flick, Baker's earlier, Pulitzer Prize-winning work, also directed by Gold, would extend Off-Broadway into 2016 at the Barrow Street Theatre.

John takes place at a bed and breakfast in Gettysburg, PA, the week after Thanksgiving. The cast includes Broadway vet Lois Smith. Opening night for John is scheduled for Aug. 11 in the Irene Diamond Stage at the Pershing Square Signature Center with performances running through Sept. 6.


In Chicago, there was a major transition at The Second City. The famous comedy troupe has announced that Kelly Leonard, the theatre's longtime producer and one of its artistic leaders, will step down from his role as vice president of Second City theatricals after a 27-year career. He will be replaced by Erica Daniels, the former associate artistic director of the Steppenwolf Theatre Company.

Leonard has worked at the The Second City since 1988, overseeing productions with such notable performers as Stephen Colbert, Tina Fey, Steve Carell, Adam McKay, Seth Meyers, Rachel Dratch, Amy Poehler, Jason Sudeikis, Keegan Michael Key, Rachel Dratch, Amy Sedaris and a host of others.

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