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Backstage Whispers overheard by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 31st May 2011

The previously postponed production of musical Godspell, book by John-Michael Tebelak, music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz, an adaptation of St Matthew's gospel relating the events leading up to the crucifixion, directed by Daniel Goldstein, with choreography by Christopher Gattelli, will preview from October 13th at the Circle in the Square Theatre, with an official opening on November 7th. The design team will include scenery by David Korins, costumes by Miranda Hoffman and lighting by Ben Stanton. The producer is Ken Davenport.

The biggest winners in this year's Drama Desk Awards were The Book Of Mormon with 5, including Musical and Director Play - Casey Nicholaw and Trey Parker; and Anything Goes with 5, including Musical Revival, Actress Musical - Sutton Foster and Choreographer - Kathleen Marshall; while War Horse took Play and Creative Team; and The Normal Heart won Play Revival and Director Play - Joel Grey and George C Wolfe. The full list of nominees and winners can be found on the Drama Desk Awards web site, via the link from Organisations in the Links section of New York TheatreNet.

The 2011/2012 City Center Encores! series, presenting great but less often performed American musicals in concert, will comprise: Merrily We Roll Along, book by George Furth, music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, based on the play by George S Kaufman and Moss Hart, the story of three friends whose friendship is tested by time, events, ambition and fate, directed by James Lapine, from February 8th to 12th; Pipe Dream, music by Richard Rodgers, book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein, based on the book Sweet Thursday by John Steinbeck, in which outcasts yearning for a better life populate the bordellos and flophouses of a 1950s California seaside town, from March 28th to April 1st; and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, book by Anita Loos and Joseph Fields, music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Leo Robin, adapted from the novel by Anita Loos, relating the adventures of the original 'dumb blonde' as she sets sail for Europe with her best friend, from May 9th to 13th. New York City Center is located 131 West 55th Street, between 6th and 7th Avenues.

Christine Jones, in association with LOT-EK Architects, True Love Productions and Times Square Arts, is to stage 6 days of Theatre For One - a 4ft by 8ft portable theatre with 1 performer playing to 1 audience member. Free performances will play to anyone on a first come, first served basis from June 7th to 12th at 46th Street and Broadway, in the middle of Times Square. The cast will include Steve Cuiffo, Birgit Huppuch, Marin Ireland, Tasha Lawrence and Dallas Roberts. The artists, of different disciplines, including theatre, poetry and magic, will perform 5 to 10 minute pieces in rotation during the residency. The works, all specifically created for the venue, are by playwrights Zayd Dorn, Stephanie Fleischman, Jacquelyn Reingold, Emily Schwend and Beau Willimon. Some surprise musical guests may be interspersed between performances. The schedule will be: June 7th 6pm-9pm, June 8th to 10th 7pm-11pm, June 11th 4pm-6pm and 7pm-11pm, and June 12th 4pm-7.30pm. Tickets are free and donations will be accepted.

The 12th annual Midtown International Theatre Festival, which runs from July 11th to 31st, has announced the list of 29 productions that will feature. The MITF will present more than 200 performances of the shows in 5 theatres, encompassing fully staged performances, world premieres, revivals, staged readings, solo shows, multimedia presentations and talkbacks. Among the shows selected are: Marisa Marquez's Gated, a contemporary reinterpretation of Our Town; the musical Making God, book, music and lyrics by Rodney Dickerman, about a man who starts a new religion; the musical Mother Eve's Secret Garden Of Sensual Sisterhood, book, music and lyrics by Uma Incrocci, Kirk McGee, Erica Jensen, the story of a self help guru who encourages people to celebrate their insecurities; the musical Rip!, book, music and lyrics by Dan Furman, additional lyrics by Mary-Liz McNamara, combining the American Revolution and Rip Van Winkle; and Trouble: A New Rock Musical, book by Michael Alvarez, music and lyrics by Ella Grace, in which 6 high school friends tackle their biggest troubles in 24 hours. Further information can be found on the MITF web site, via the link from Festivals in the Links section of New York TheatreNet.

The 13th annual Broadway Barks fundraising event, with artists from Broadway shows taking part, will be held in Shubert Alley on July 9th from 3.30pm to 6.30pm, produced by Broadway Care/Equity Fights AIDS. Co-hosted by Bernadette Peters and Mary Tyler Moore, the dog and cat adopt-a-thon benefits New York City animal shelters and adoption agencies, and includes celebrity presentations of pets from animal shelters throughout the city. Last year's event attracted more than 7,500 theatre fans, pet owners, animal lovers and Broadway stars, and led to more than 200 adoptions. Shubert Alley is located alongside the Shubert and Booth Theatres between 44th and 45th Streets, between Broadway and 8th Avenue.

The musical The Next Thing You Know, book and lyrics by Ryan Cunningham, music by Joshua Salzman, the story of four New Yorkers waking up from their invincible 20s and confronting adulthood in the city that never sleeps, with Lauren Molina, Adam Kantor, Heath Calvert and Lauren Blackman, directed by Terry Berliner, will preview from 7th June at Cap21, opening on 9th June. Cap21 is located at 18 West 18th Street, between 5th and 6th Avenue.

Wide Eyed Productions will stage Euripides's The Trojan Women, in a production that relocates the post Trojan war play to the contemporary Middle East, with Amy Lee Pearsall, Kirsta Peterson, Jael Golad, Melissa Johnson, Judy Merrick, Justin Ness and Will Reid, directed by Kristin Skye Hoffmann, at the Kraine Theatre from July 7th. The Kraine Theatre is located at 85 East 4th Street, between The Bowery and 2nd Avenue.