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Backstage Whispers overheard by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 1st December 2014

Greg Edwards and Andy Sandberg's Applications Pending, a one person play in which an ill prepared assistant fends off parents applying for places at an elite Manhattan kindergarten, with over 40 characters performed by Christina Bianco, directed by Andy Sandberg, will preview from January 26th at the Westside Theatre, opening on February 10th. The producers are Randi Zuckerberg and Drew Desky, in association with Rose Polidoro/Charles Coplin. The Westside Theatre is located at 407 West 43rd Street, between 9th and 10th Avenues.

Lincoln Center's 2015 American Songbook series, featuring the work of a particular writer or performer, at the Appel Room at Jazz at Lincoln Center, running from January 28th to February 28th, will include Broadway Standards with Billy Porter; Norm Lewis singing songs that inspire him; Stephen Sondheim and Steve Reich in conversation with their songs performed by Paul Gemignani, George Lee Andrews, Kate Baldwin and Michael Cerveris; Judy Kuhn singing works by Richard Rodgers, Mary Rodgers and Adam Guettel; Meshell Ndegeocello with the songs of Nina Simone; Megan Hilty performing Broadway favourites; and Barbara Cook. Jazz at Lincoln Center is located in the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle.

On The Casting Couch: Tam Mutu, Kelli Barrett, Tom Hewitt and Paul Nolan will head the cast of the Michael Weller-Lucy Simon-Michael Korie-Amy Powers musical Doctor Zhivago, opening at the Broadway Theatre on April 21st.

The Midtown International Theatre Festival, which offers the chance for self-produced Off Off Broadway plays and musicals to be presented, is seeking submissions for its 16th season, running from July 13th to August 9th next year. The MITF presents more than 200 performances of 40-60 shows each year in 3 theatres at 312 West 36th Street, between 8th and 9th avenues. The basic deal is that MITF pays the theatre and marketing costs, and individual shows pay for everything else. Submissions must be received by January 26th. Further information and an application form can be found on the MITF web site, via the link from Festivals & Events in the Links section of New York TheatreNet.

What Were They Thinking: Carrie, From Book To Movie To Musical, published by Applause Books, is a personal chronicle, tracking Lawrence Cohen's almost four decade history with Stephen King's story, from reading the manuscript in 1973 for producer David Susskind, to writing the screenplay for the 1976 Brian de Palma film, from deciding to turn it into a musical in 1984 to the controversial Royal Shakespeare Company and legendary Broadway production that crashed and burned in 1988, to collaborating on its rebirth and resurrection Off-Broadway for MCC Theater in 2012. Rarely has a theatrical account been so first person and insider based, naming names, telling never-before-told stories, and revealing what its creators were thinking. Passionate and visceral, it provides a highly informative and educational behind-the-scenes look into just how musicals are written and put together. How did the show go so far off track? How did the top class writing team mess up so badly? How did the Royal Shakespeare Company's follow-up to Les Miserables become such a train wreck? This book charts the entire journey from its inception to its resurrection.

Off Sides Entertainment will stage Margaret Dulaney's The Hummingbird Tour, set in 1970s Northern California, where three aging siblings and their childhood nanny, receive a visit from a mysterious stranger, bearing startling predictions that turn their quiet, simple lives upside down, directed by John Augustine, opening at the Theater at St Clement's in October. The Theatre at St Clement's is located at 423 West 46th Street, between 9th and 10th Avenues.

John Paul Porter's Men And Women Talking Love And Sex, a comedy that follows the development of an unlikely relationship, with Aaron Ballard, Nicolas Greco, Zane Johnston, Ben Kahre and Karen Stanion, directed by Michole Biancosino, will play at the Davenport Theatre, from December 5th. The Davenport Theatre is located at 354 West 45th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues.

Beautiful Soup Collective will stage a repertoire of biographical plays by Steven Carl McCasland, comprising What Was Lost, about Laurette Taylor, directed by Steven Carl McCasland; Little Wars, about Lillian Hellman and Dorothy Parker, directed by Thia Stephan Hyde; Shades Of Blue: The Decline And Fall Of Lady Day, about Billie Holiday, directed by Steven Carl McCasland; Neat & Tidy, about Susan Smith, directed by Thia Stephan Hyde; 28 Marchant Avenue, about Rose Kennedy, directed by Steven Carl McCasland; and The Drive, about Elizabeth Taylor, Marlon Brando and Michael Jackson, with Kristen Gehling, Margo Jones, Colin Fisher, Suzanne Froix, Kimberly Faye Greenberg, Renee Heitmann, Alana Inez, Orlando Iriarte, Somie Pak, Brian Piehl, Paul Thomas Ryan, Laurie Sammeth and Penny Lynn White, at The Clarion Theatre, from May 6th. The Clarion Theatre is located at 309 East 26th Street, between Mount Carmel Place and 2nd Avenue.

The Rumour Machine says: that the musical Waitress, with a score by Sara Bareilles, adapted from the 2007 movie about a woman trapped in a job she hates whose life changes when she discovers she is pregnant, with Jessie Mueller, directed by Diane Paulus, will play a prospective pre Broadway date at the American Repertory Theater during 2015/2016 season, courtesy of producers Barry and Fran Weissler. The Rumour Machine grinds on.