Baseball season kicking off in the rest of the country, but the baseball musical Damn Yankees starring Tony Randall is closing down in Texas April 2. Performances began March 21 at Theater Under the Star's Arena Theatre in Houston, TX.
Randall stars as the devilish Mr. Applegate. He is best known for his anal retentive turn as Felix Unger in TV's "The Odd Couple," alongside Jack Klugman. Randall's most recent return to the Broadway stage was also opposite Klugman in a revival of another Neil Simon work, The Sunshine Boys. Randall is executive producer of the National Actor's Theatre, the group he established in 1991 to revive classic plays at affordable prices. (no word yet on the company's next project; previous mountings have included The Gin Game, The Crucible and A Little Hotel on the Side).
Tony Award winner Jarrod Emick again plays Joe Hardy, the role for which he won the Tony Award (as well as the Drama Desk and Theatre World awards). Other credits include Chris in Broadway's Miss Saigon and Enjolras in the touring Les Miserables.
Also in the cast are Jill Powell as the devil's assistant in seduction, Lola, Robert Vincent Smith as Joe Hardy's older incarnation, Joe Boyd, Louisa Flanigam as Joe's wife, Meg, Beth Leavel (The Civil War) as sports reporter Gloria Thorpe, Jody Ashworth, Brad Drummerand Gair Morris as Senators teammates Rocky, Smokey and Sohovik; Joel Blum as the Senators' manager, Van Buren and Bill Hardy as Welch, owner of the Washington Senators.
Bick Goss will direct Damn Yankees with choreography by John MacInnis. Designing the show are John Farrell (sets), David C. Woolard (costumes), Kirk Bookman (lighting) and Beth Berkeley (sound). Also in the Arena season will be 1776 Oct. 10-22 and The Wiz Dec. 5-17. In the summer season at the Wortham will be Evita July 11-23 and Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story Aug. 8-20.
Single tickets are $55-$16. For tickets, call (800) 678-5440. Shows run in both the Arena Theatre and Brown Theatre at the Wortham Center. Theatre Under the Stars is on the web at http://www.tuts.com.
-- By Christine Ehren