The Roundabout Theater Company recently held a reading of Ronald Harwood's backstage drama, The Dresser, which may be headed for a full production, reported Variety. The reading starred Alan Cumming (Cabaret) in the title role, the beleaguered dresser of an aging stage star, and Richard Easton (The Invention of Love) as the actor. Director Scott Ellis told Variety that "We would definitely like to do it," but a spokesman for the Roundabout could not confirm any plays for a coming mounting.
Ellis, who is, as usual, putting in a lot of time in at the Roundabout (he is directing the upcoming Broadway stagings of Arthur Miller's The Man Who Had All the Luck and Rodgers and Hart's The Boys from Syracuse), also spoke about the long-gestating and often-delayed Burt Bacharach and Hal David revue, What The World Needs Now (after the Bacharach-David tune), now tentatively called The Look of Love (after another Bacharach-David tune).
The Roundabout had planned to stage the show, which premiered at the Old Globe Theatre three and one half years ago, in the summer of 1998, but decided to postpone the project (eventually leaving the door open for Warren Leight's Side Man, which went on to win the Tony Award for best play). Gillian Lynne directed and choreographed that version of the revue, which had a book by Kenny Solms, based on an idea by Solms and Lynne. Ellis told Variety the team now consists of Ann Reinking and Tommy Thompson. Additionally, the show, once a book musical, is now a revue.
Ellis also mentioned that the Roundabout was thinking of putting the revue in Studio 54. "We're interested in putting [it] in than environment," he said. "We might keep some of the tables. They fit the world of Bacharach and David. I like this music with drink in hand." Recently, the Donmar Warehouse staging of Nine, the Maury Yeston-Arthur Kopit-Mario Fratti musical, was also mentioned for Studio 54. Of course, the Roundabout has announced no closing date for 54's current resident, Cabaret, and offered no comment on any show as a new tenant at the former nightclub. At the 2001 Tony ceremony, Natasha Richardson — who created the role of Sally Bowles in the long running revival—said that she may return to Cabaret to close the show sometime in 2002.
* The remainder of the officially-announced 2001-02 season runs as follows:
• Clare Booth Luce's The Women, at the AA Theatre, under the direction of Scott Elliot, through Jan. 6.
• Heather McDonald's An Almost Holy Picture, starring Kevin Bacon, directed by Michael Mayer, opening Feb. 7 at the AA Theatre.
• Arthur Miller's early work, The Man Who Had All the Luck, starring Chris O'Donnell and Samantha Mathis, directed by Scott Ellis, at the AA Theatre beginning in spring 2002.
• The Rodgers and Hart musical The Boy from Syracuse, directed by Scott Ellis, at the AA Theatre in summer 2002.
• Angela Bovell's Speaking in Tongues, directed by Mark Clements, currently playing the Gramercy Theatre through Jan. 20
• The Dazzle by Richard Greenberg, directed by David Warren, likely starring Peter Frechette and Reg Rogers, opening at the Gramercy Theatre on Aug. 1, 2002.