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Backstage Whispers overheard by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 21st January 2013

A new musical Big Fish, adapted from the novel by Daniel Wallace and 2003 film, about a man who tells epic tales, whose son embarks on a journey to find out who his father really is, revealing the man behind the myth, and the truth from the tall tales, book by John August from his screenplay, music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa, with Norbert Leo Butz, Kate Baldwin, Bobby Steggert, Krystal Joy Brown and Zachary Unger, directed and choreographed by Susan Stroman, will preview from September 5th at the Neil Simon Theatre, with an official opening on October 6th. The design team will comprise scenery by Julian Crouch, costumes by William Ivey Long, lighting by Donald Holder, projection by Benjamin Pearcy for 59 Productions, and sound by Jon Weston. The producers are Dan Jinks, Bruce Cohen and Stage Entertainment with Roy Furman, The Nederlander Organization, John Domo and Broadway Across America.

It's Official! As previously forecast here, the New York Theatre Workshop production of the play with music Peter And The Starcatcher, by Rick Elice, music by Wayne Barker, adapted from Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson's 'prequel' to J M Barrie's Peter Pan, directed by Roger Rees and Alex Timbers, with musical staging by Stephen Hoggett, which has just ended a Broadway run at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre, will re-emerge Off Broadway at New World Stages on March 18th.

Second Stage Theatre will stage the musical comedy Nobody Loves You, book and lyrics by Itamar Moses, music and lyrics by Gaby Alter, a behind the scenes look at a television dating programme, directed by Michelle Tattenbaum, with choreography by Mandy Moore, opening in June. Second Stage Theatre is located at 305 West 43rd Street at 8th Avenue.

Dave Malloy's Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet Of 1812, a section of Tolstoy's War And Peace adapted into a libretto, set to an original score that merges Russian folk and classical music with indie rock, electronica, and organ-influenced cadences, performed as an environmental experience, directed by Rachel Chavkin, which played an extended run at Ars Nova last fall, will return to an Off Broadway theatre yet to be announced from April 1st. The producers are Harold and Janet Kagan.

Forthcoming productions at Theatre Row will include Foodacts, conceived and directed by Barbara Bosch, which explores our primal connections to food, using novels, poetry, essays and letters, including Proust, Homer, Dickens, Langston Hughes and even the Bible as evidence of how human beings relate to and obsess over food, with Robert Allan, Judith Barcroft, Gwen Eyster, Peter Husovsky, Jaclyn Mitgang, Mark Ringer and Antonio Edwards Suarez, previewing on February 6th at the Lion Theatre, opening on February 7th, produced by Jeux de Mots trans WORDPLAY & Joel Bassin; and Josh Koenigsberg's The Mnemonist Of Dutchess County, about a man whose romantic adventures are hampered by his unlimited memory, which makes him spout out pretty much every unromantic thing he's ever heard in his life, with Henry Vick, Aaron Costa Gains, Ava Eisenson, Brit Whittle, Malcolm Madera and Jessica Varley, directed by Laura Savia, previewing from February 8th at the Beckett Theatre, opening on February 12th, produced by the Attic Theater Company. Theatre Row is located at 410 West 42nd Street, between 9th and 10th Avenues.

Tennessee Williams's Suddenly Last Summer, the steamy Southern drama, combining Williams's usual themes, including homosexuality, incest, revenge and cannibalism, directed by and featuring Austin Pendleton, with Johanna Leister and Jen Danby, will preview from February 9th at the Alexander Technique Center for Performance and Development, opening on February 15th. The Alexander Technique Center for Performance and Development is located at 330 West 38th Street, Suite 805, between 8th and 9th Avenues.

Blueprint Theater Project will stage David Alex Andrejko's The Human Variations, a theatrical symphony that examines those moments when human beings are right next to each other and still deeply alone, with Kyla Deichl, Molly Groome, Nick Hepsoe, Cole Johnston, Sarah King, Jillian Mason, Melissa McNerney and Zac Walker, directed by Ellen Orenstein, with choreography by Anna DeMers, at Red Roots Gallery from February 7th. It is accompanied by a photography exhibit featuring the work of Abby Verbosky. Red Roots Gallery is located at 25 Central Park West, at 63rd Street.

The Theatre 167 production of The Jackson Heights Trilogy, conceived and directed by Ari Laura Kreith, comprising 167 Tongues, exploring the emotional geography of the most diverse neighborhood in the world, by Jenny Lyn Bader, Meny Beriro, Alvin Eng, Steven Fechter, Jennifer Gibbs, Les Hunter, Anna Kushner, Rehana Mirza, Suzanne Sheptock and Stefanie Zadravec; Are You Now The Owner Of This Suitcase, a contemporary magic realist story for all ages, by Mando Alvarado, Jenny Lyn Bader, Barbara Cassidy, Les Hunter, Joy Tomasko, Gary Winter and Stefanie Zadravec; and Jackson Heights 3am, in which car dispatchers, sex workers, drag queens, gamblers, and insomniacs collide after hours, by Jenny Lyn Bader, J Stephen Brantley, Ed Cardona Jr, Les Hunter, Tom Miller, Melisa Tien and Joy Tomasko; at 777 Theatre, from February 8th. 777 Theatre is located at 777 8th Avenue, between 47th and 48th Streets.

Godlight Theatre Company will stage The Pilo Family Circus, adapted by Matt Pelfrey from the novel by Will Elliot, about a man transformed when he joins a centuries old carnival, among acrobats, clowns, dwarves, freaks and fortune tellers, with Chris Cipriano, Dre Davis, Brett Glass, Lawrence Jansen, Adam Kee, Gregory Konow, Nick Paglino, Michael Shimkin, Jenny Stulberg and Jarrod Zayas, directed by Joe Tantalo, with choreography by Maiysha Cade, at the New Ohio Theatre, from January 31st. The New Ohio is located at 154 Christopher Street, between Greenwich and Washington Streets.

The Rumour Machine says: that a revival of the musical Can-Can, book by Abe Burrows, revised by David Lee and Joel Fields, music and lyrics by Cole Porter, about the only cafe owner in Paris who dares to feature the scandalous and illicit Can-Can dance, directed by David Lee, with choreography by Patti Colombo, is aiming for Broadway in spring 2014, courtesy of producer Jonathan Burrows. The Rumour Machine grinds on.