Playbill Vault's Today in Theatre History: January 14

Playbill Vault   Playbill Vault's Today in Theatre History: January 14
 
In 1999, Fosse opens its razzle-dazzle at the Broadhurst Theatre.
Fosse_Broadway_Production Photos_1999_X_HR
Cast of Fosse Catherine Ashmore

1903 Opening night of The Little Princess, Frances Hodgson Burnett's play about a child, much in the same vein as her The Secret Garden. It runs just 34 performances.

1904 Birthday of Cecil Beaton, who designs stylish costumes for many Broadway shows, most memorably My Fair Lady in 1956, but also sets and costumes for Saratoga, Coco, Tenderloin, The Grass Harp, The Chalk Garden, and others.

1929 This is a Gypsy who doesn't 'bump it with a trumpet'—her 'gimmick' is asphyxiation. Maxwell Anderson's heroine is torn between two men and decides to take her own life. Staged by George Cukor, the drama runs just two months at the Klaw Theatre in New York. In Anderson's script—but not in the Broadway run—the heroine decides to save herself at the last moment.

1930 George and Ira Gershwin team up with George S. Kaufman and Morrie Ryskind for the first new musical of the 1930s, Strike Up the Band, a satire on big business that shows a tycoon spurring the country on to war over Swiss cheese. It features the comedy team of Bobby Clark and Paul McCullough. The show runs 191 performances, which encourages the team to move on to its next satire, the Pulitzer-winning Of Thee I Sing.

1954 The Boy Friend cavorts at the Wyndham's in London. Sandy Wilson's spoof of musicals of the '20s runs 2,084 performances.

1960 The Zoo Story, Edward Albee's first produced play, runs at the Provincetown Theatre in New York. William Daniels and George Maharis are featured as the two combatants. It runs in conjunction with Samuel Beckett's Krapp's Last Tape for 582 performances.

1993 Opening night of Roundabout Theatre Company's revival of Anna Christie, starring Natasha Richardson and Liam Neeson. Their onstage chemistry is so successful, the two later marry. The production receives the 1993 Tony Award for Best Revival.

1999 Fosse opens its razzle-dazzle at the Broadhurst Theatre. The cast of dancers step to the moves of the late Bob Fosse, as choreographed by the late Ann Reinking and re-created by Chet Walker. Richard Maltby, Jr. and Reinking direct, with artistic advice given by Gwen Verdon. The production wins three Tony Awards, including Best Musical, and runs for 1,093 performances.

2009 Cameron Mackintosh's revamped version of his 1994 production of Lionel Bart's Oliver! opens in London at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane. It stars Rowan Atkinson as Fagin, with Jodie Prenger—who won her role by public vote, following the BBC 1 Reality TV show I'd Do Anything—as Nancy.

2014 Bebe Neuwirth, who won a 1997 Tony Award for her acclaimed portrayal of jazz-age killer Velma Kelly in the hit revival of Chicago and returned 10 years later as merry murderess Roxie Hart, steps into the role of Matron "Mama" Morton for an eight-week limited engagement.

2016 The Roundabout Theatre Company's Broadway revival of Michael Frayn's Noises Off opens at the American Airlines Theatre. Andrea Martin, Megan Hilty, and Rob McClure star.

More of Today's Birthdays: Trevor Nunn (b. 1940). Faye Dunaway (b. 1941). Holland Taylor (b. 1943). Kathleen Chalfant (b. 1945). Julia Murney (b. 1969).

Watch highlights from the 2016 Broadway revival of Noises Off:

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