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Backstage Whispers overheard by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 21st May 2012

Bring It On: The Musical, set in the world of competitive cheerleading and cutthroat high school politics, book by Jeff Whitty, music and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda, additional music by Tom Kitt and lyrics by Amanda Green, directed and choreographed by Andy Blankenbuehler, which is currently touring, will play a limited season at the St James Theatre, previewing from July 7th, with an official opening on August 1st, and running until October 7th. The cast is headed by Adrienne Warren, Ryann Redmond, Taylor Louderman, Jason Gotay, Elle McLemore, Ariana DeBose, Gregory Haney, Neil Haskell, Janet Krupin, Kate Rockwell and Nick Womack. The design team comprises scenery by David Korins, costumes by Andrea Lauer, lighting by Jason Lyons, sound by Brian Ronan, and video by Jeff Sugg. The producers are Universal Pictures Stage Productions/Glenn Ross, Beacon Communications/Armyan Bernstein, Charlie Lyons, and Kristin Caskey and Mike Isaacson.

The musical comedy The Last Smoker In America, book and lyrics by Bill Russell, music by Peter Melnick, about a dysfunctional family struggling to survive in a world where smoking has recently been outlawed, directed by Andy Sandberg, with choreography by A C Ciulla, will preview from July 11th at the Westside Theatre Upstairs, opening on August 2nd. The producers are Andy Sandberg, Whitney Hoagland Edwards, Michael Palitz and Stephanie Rosenberg. The Westside Theatre is located at 407 West 43rd Street, between 9th and 10th Avenues.

TheatreworksUSA's 24th annual Free Summer Theatre Program will feature the premiere of a 60 minute musical recommended for children ages 4 and up, Skippyjon Jones, book and lyrics by Kevin Del Aguila, music by Eli Bolin, based on the picture book series by Judy Schachner about a Siamese cat who think's he's a Chihuahua, directed by Peter Flynn, with choreography by Devanand Janki, playing daytime performances from July 17th at the Lucille Lortel Theatre, opening on July 25th. A limited number of free tickets will be available to individuals at the theatre each day one hour prior to show time, while summer camps, youth programs and other social service organizations can make reservations for groups of ten or more. The Lucille Lortel Theatre is located at 121 Christopher Street, between Bleecker and Hudson Streets.

Last year's Steppenwolf Theatre, Chicago/Arena Stage, Washington production of Edward Albee's Who's Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?, the iconic darkly comic play detailing the breakdown of the 23 year marriage of a combative couple during a 'quiet evening with friends', with Tracy Letts, Amy Morton, Carrie Coon and Madison Dirks, directed by Pam MacKinnon, will be remounted on Broadway, previewing from September 27th at a Shubert theatre yet to be announced, with an official opening on October 13th, 50 years to the day after the play's original Broadway opening. The design team comprises scenery by Todd Rosenthal, costumes by Nan Cibula-Jenkins, lighting by Allen Lee Hughes, and sound by Rob Milburn and Michael Bodeen. It will be presented by Jeffrey Richards, Jerry Frankel, Susan Quint Gallin and Mary Lu Roffe in association with Steppenwolf Theatre Company.

Mentalist and magician Max Maven will present his show Thinking In Person, with assistant Melanie Crispin, directed by Alexander Marshall, previewing from June 12th at the Abingdon Theatre Arts Complex, opening on June 14th. The producers are Alexander Marshall and Giles Cole. The Abingdon Theatre Arts Complex is located at 312 West 36th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues.

Second Stage Theatre's 2012/2013 season will include the premiere of Jon Kern's Modern Terrorism, or They Who Want To Kill Us And How We Learn To Love Them, a provocative satire about a rogue group of 21st century terrorists and their darkly comic misadventures, directed by Peter DuBois, opening in October; and Quiara Alegria Hudes's Water By The Spoonful, about the problems faced by a Marine adjusting to civilian life after returning home from Iraq, directed by Davis McCallum, opening in January. Second Stage Theatre, is located at 305 West 43rd Street, at 8th Avenue.

Boomerang Theatre Company will stage free performances of a new version of William Shakespeare's Hamlet, adapted and directed by Tim Errickson, with Zack Calhoon and Mark Souza, in Central Park, near Central Park West, between 69th and 70th Streets, on Saturdays and Sundays at 2pm and 7pm from June 23rd to July 15th.

On The Casting Couch: David Strathairn and Jessica Chastain will be joined by Dan Stevens in Ruth and Augustus Goetz's The Heiress, open at a Broadway theatre yet to be confirmed in the fall.

Michael Weller's Fifty Words, charting stormy events that take place during the first night that a couple have spent alone together since the birth of their 9 year old son, with Bob Jesser and Jennifer Silverman, directed by Jason Bruffy, at 45th Street Theatre, from June 1st. The producers are Foaming at the Mouth Productions and Golden Lasso Productions. The 45th Street Theatre is located at 155 West 46th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues.

The Hunchback Variations, book and lyrics by Mickle Maher, music by Mark Messing, relating the attempts by Quasimodo, the hunchback of Notre Dame and Ludwig van Beethoven to create the mysterious sound effect called for in Anton Chekov's The Cherry Orchard, featuring and directed by Larry Adams and George Andrew Wolff, will play at 59E59 Theaters from June 1st. The producers are Theater Oobleck and Brian W Parker. 59E59 Theaters is located at 59 East 59th Street, between Park and Madison Avenues.

Playhouse Creatures Theatre Company will stage John Kolvebach's Love Song, a romantic comedy in which the arrival of a stranger turns the world upside down, with Eric Doss, Sarah Koestner, Joseph W Rodriguez and Patricia Duran, directed by Kenny Wade Marshall, at Access Theatre from June 8th. Access Theatre is located at 380 Broadway, 4th Floor, at White Street.

The Rumour Machine says: that David West Read's The Performers, possibly with Henry Winkler and Cheyenne Jackson as ex and current porn stars, directed by Evan Cabnet, is aiming for a Broadway in the fall, courtesy of producer Robyn Goodman; and that Ever After, a musical adaptation of the 1998 film telling a Cinderella like story set in 16th century France, whose heroine doesn't need the help of a fairy godmother, book and lyrics by Marcy Heisler, music by Zina Goldrich, directed and choreographed by Kathleen Marshall, is aiming to arrive on Broadway during the 2013/2014 season, courtesy of producers Scott Landis and Philip Morgaman. The Rumour Machine grinds on.