The WEEK AHEAD. . . Oct. 23-29

Inside Track   The WEEK AHEAD. . . Oct. 23-29
Holy musical mayhem, Batman! This WEEK AHEAD features a duel with the Dark Knight and a musical masked villain, M.D.… Simon says…a Next to Normal update courtesy of Twitter… and a tribute to Frank Loesser that’s got heart, soul and stars.

A bushel and a peck,

Friday, October 23
Neil Patrick HarrisWATCH? Neil-o-philes rejoice! Neil Patrick Harris’ evil cartoon alter ego, the Music Meister, will take on the Caped Crusader himself. Batman: The Brave & The Bold premieres tonight on the Cartoon Network. (7:30pm on Cartoon Network, info and a sneak preview)

GO? Tony and Emmy Winning funny lady Lily Tomlin will return to the “classics” with a one-night-only performance of some of her classic characters like Trudy, Mrs. Beasely and my personal favorite, the ever-so “gracious” Ernestine. (8pm, NYPAC, One Center Street, Newark, NJ, tickets)

Saturday, October 24
WATCH? New York’s WABC takes a look at all the hottest shows on the Boards this season with one of Broadway’s hottest stars—John Stamos—as host. “Broadway Backstage” features stars a-plenty including Jude Law, Sienna Miller, Johnny Lee Miller, the Birdie kids, Laurie Metcalf, the cast of Ragtime, Ana Gesteyer, Carrie Fisher and Christopher Sieber. (7:30pmET on WABC Channel 7)

Sunday, October 25
OPENING? The first part of the Neil Simon Plays, Brighton Beach Memoirs, opens this Sunday, with the last part, Broadway Bound, due next month. Brighton boasts one of the best casts on Broadway this season with a stunning performance by a young Noah Robbins as the first Eugene Jerome. (The Nederlander Theatre, 208 West 41st street, between 7th and 8th Avenues, tickets)

GO? Cast members of Hair join vocal sensation WING at Birdland. The Hong Kong native and the Tony Award winning tribe will sing songs from the tuner as well as covers of classic songs from Michael Jackson and Celine Dion. (7pm, through Monday, Birdland, 315 W. 44th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues, for tickets call 212.581.3080 or click here)

Monday, October 26
GO? Tony and Oscar Winner Vanessa Redgrave will reprise her critically acclaimed role in Joan Didion’s The Year of Magical Thinking in a one-night-only performance to benefit UNICEF and UNRWA and their relief efforts to civilians in need in the Gaza Strip. (8pm, St. John the Divine, 1047 Amsterdam Avenue, at 112th Street, for tickets call 866-811-4111 or click here)

GO? Stars from Hugh Jackman to Paul McCarthy to Annette Benning to Cookie Monster will take to the stage at the Minskoff this Monday in a celebration of the late composer, Frank Loesser. Other stars participating include Audra McDonald, Chita Rivera, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Art Garfunkel, Steven Pasquale and Mario Cantone. Proceeds benefit the Actors Fund. (7:30pm, The Minskoff Theatre, 200 w. 45th street, at Broadway, tickets/info)

Tuesday, October 27
GO? Lucie Arnaz joins NY Observer’s Rex Reed for a discussion about her famous lineage and upcoming show, Lyrics and Lyricists, which celebrates the music of her father, Desi Arnaz. (8:15pm, Kaufmann Concert Hall at the 92 Street Y, at Lexington Avenue, tickets)

Wednesday, October 28
GO? Tony Award winning duo Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey will debut the much talked (and tweeted) about new song for Next to Normal this Wednesday. N2N’s Twitter campaign generated a huge web following amassing over 860,000 followers. (7pm, 92YTribeca, 200 Hudson Street, tickets)

Thursday, October 29
OPENING? Fresh off a very successful Encores! concert run, Finian’s Rainbow makes the leap over the rainbow to Broadway this Thursday. The 62-year old tuner brings us back to the mythical state of Missitucky and stars Cheyenne Jackson, Kate Baldwin and Jim Norton. (St. James, Theatre, 246 W. 44th Street, tickets)

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