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Backstage Whispers overheard by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 13th October 2008

Roundabout Theatre Company will stage Christopher Hampton's The Philanthropist, a comedy about a University don anguishing over sex, marriage, anagrams and the meaning of life, with Matthew Broderick, directed by David Grindley, previewing from April 10th at the American Airlines Theatre, with an official opening on April 26th.

Memoirs Of Madness, a horror double bill adapting classic diaries of diseased psyches, directed by Janet Bobcean, comprising Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper, about a woman confined to bed rest with post-partum depression, performed by Megan O'Leary, and Edgar Allan Poe's The Tell-Tale Heart, about a murderer whose guilt and psychosis betray his 'perfect triumph', performed by Gretchen Knapp, will open at the Players Theatre on 30th October. The producer is My Fair Heathen Productions. The Players Theatre is located at 115 MacDougal Street, between West 3rd Street and Minetta Lane.

It's Official! As previously forecast here, Guys And Dolls, the 'musical fable of Broadway', based on Damon Runyan's short stories of colorful New York characters, with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser, and book by Abe Burrows and Jo Swerlin, featuring Oliver Platt, directed by Des McAnuff, with choreography by Sergio Trujillo, will preview from February 3rd at the Nederlander Theatre, with an official opening on March 1st. The producers are Howard Panter for Ambassador Theatre Group, Tulchin/Bartner and Darren Bagert.

The children's musical Pinkalicious, book and lyrics by Elizabeth and Victoria Kann, adapted from their book of the same name, music by John Gregor, directed by Teresa K Pond, which has already played two Off Broadway seasons, will return at the Bleeker Street Theatre from 1st November. The company comprises Diane Zelenka, Marc De La Concha, Molly Gilman, Kyle Minshew and Erin Wegner Brooks. It is the story of a girl who can't stop eating pink cupcakes and eventually turns pink from head to toe. The show is presented by Vital Theatre Company. The Bleecker Street Theatre is located at 45 Bleecker Street, between Lafayette and Mott Streets.

The Flea Theater will stage the world premiere of Joshua Scher's The Footage, a multi-media story of three groups of twenty-something friends whose lives intersect in the world of online gaming, with Elizabeth Alderfer, Celeste Arias, Blair Baker, Matthew Bretschneider, Jamie Effros, Nicolas Flower, Jessica Grant, Robert Grant, Michael Guagno, Laurel Holland, Caroline Hurley, Rachel McPhee, Dan McVey, Michael Micalizzi and Celina Reyes, directed by Claudia Zelevansky, previewing from October 23rd, opening on November 8th. The Flea Theater is located at 41 White Street, between Broadway and Church Street.

Big Apple Circus returns for its 31st season at Lincoln Center's Damrosch Park with its latest show Play On!, featuring a mix of classical, rock and soul music, the world's finest circus artists - and, of course, Grandma - from October 23rd to January 18th.

The terraNOVA Collective will open a residency at the DR2 Theatre with Kate McGovern's Blue Before Morning, in which a New York cabbie drives a teenage girl and pregnant, foul mouthed hitchhiker on a journey of unusual coincidences and second chances, with Kether Donohue, Phyllis Johnson, Jenny Maguire, Chris McKinney, Flaco Navaja and Jennifer Dorr White, directed by Gia Forakis, previewing from October 17th, opening on October 19th. The DR2 Theatre is located at 103 East 15th Street, between Union Square East and Irving Place.

The names of this year's thespians to be inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame have been announced. They are actors Nathan Lane and Richard Easton, playwright Alan Ayckbourn, producer Emanuel Azenberg, choreographer Patricia Birch, composer Marvin Hamlisch, orchestrator Jonathan Tunick, with actor Roscoe Lee Browne inducted posthumously. The 38th annual ceremony will be held at the Gershwin Theatre on 26th January. The Hall of Fame was created to honour performers and creatives who have made a lasting impression in American theatre. To be eligible for induction, a candidate must have a career that spans 25 years, with at least 5 major stage credits. They are chosen by 350 voting members of the Theater Hall of Fame and the American Theater Critics Association. Membership is marked by a plaque in the North Rotunda in the lobby of the Gershwin Theatre.

Heiress Productions will stage the New York premiere of Martin Zimmerman's George Balanchine inspired play with dance, Three Movements, with Erin Fogarty, Maria Portman Kelly and Mike Timoney, directed by Maura Farver, with choreography by Avichai Scher, at The Studio Theatre at Theatre Row, opening on October 17th. The play examines the relationship between choreographer and dancer, the power of eroticism in art, and how people choose (or refuse) to confront illness and the aging process. Theatre Row is located at 410 West 42nd Street, between 9th and 10th Avenues.

The next production by Theater Breaking Through Barriers will be A R Gurney's comedy The Middle Ages, with George Ashiotis, Melanie Boland, Terry Small and Marilee Talkington, directed by Ike Schambelan, from October 22nd at the Kirk Theatre at Theatre Row. Set in the trophy room of a men's club, from just after World War II through the late 1970's, it illustrates the conflict between long standing traditions and the pressure for change.

The Atlantic Theater Company production of David Pittu's What's That Smell: The Music Of Jacob Sterling, a musical satire that charts the career of eternally up-and-coming, not very talented (and fictitious) musical theatre composer, music by Randy Redd, with Pittu and Peter Bartlett, directed by Pittu and Neil Pepe, will transfer to New World Stages from November 1st. New World Stages is located at 340 West 50th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues.

Lillian Yuralia, a domestic drama set in the Lower East Side of Manhattan in 1930, written by and featuring Barbara Eda-Young, with Ben Hammer and John Magaro, directed by Austin Pendleton, will play at La MaMa E.T.C. from 13th November. La MaMa E.T.C. is located at 74A East 4th Street, between 2nd Avenue and The Bowery.