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Backstage Whispers overheard by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 31st August 2009

It's Official! As previously forecast here, Irving Berlin's White Christmas the stage adaptation of the 1954 film, with music and lyrics by Irving Berlin, and book by David Ives and Paul Blake, from the screenplay by Norman Krasna, Norman Panama and Melvin Frank, directed by Walter Bobbie, and choreographed by Randy Skinner, will return to the Marquis Theatre for a second season, from November 13th to January 3rd. Two World War II veterans turned song and dance men follow a singing sisters act to a Christmas booking at a Vermont lodge, owned by their former army commander, which is suffering from lack of snow - love and precipitation conquers all. And yes, there will be a snowfall over the audience during the title number. The design team comprises scenery by Anna Louizos, costumes by Carrie Robbins, lighting by Ken Billington and sound by Acme Sound Partners. The producers are Kevin McCollum, John Gore, Tom McGrath, Paul Blake, The Producing Office, Dan Markley, Sonny Everett and Broadway Across America in association with Paramount Pictures.

Love Child, written and performed by Daniel Jenkins and Robert Stanton, in which they portray everyone on stage, backstage and in the house at the first night of a new play, directed by Carl Forsman, with choreography by Tracy Bersley, will preview from October 23rd at New World Stages, opening on October 31st. The producers are Martin Hummel, Primary Stages and The StoryLine Project LLC. New World Stages is located at 340 West 50th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues.

The Kaufman Center has announced its 2009/2010 New York Festival of Song in the Merkin Concert Hall, which comprises Where We Come From, with Amy Burton, Sari Gruber, Dina Kuznetsova, Sasha Cooke, Kate Lindsey, Joseph Kaiser, Paul Appleby, William Sharp and James Martin, exploring their musical backgrounds, from opera and art song to garage bands and the blues, on October 13th; Great American Songwriting Teams, featuring songs by George & Ira Gershwin, Dietz & Schwartz, Rodgers & Hart, Rodgers & Hammerstein, Lerner & Loewe, Bock & Harnick, Kander & Ebb, Leiber & Stoller, Bolcom & Weinstein, performed by artists including Sylvia McNair, Mary Testa and Jason Graae, on November 17th and 19th; The Voluptuous Muse, presenting works by late Romantic writers Nikolai Medtner, Karol Szymanowski, Erich Korngold, Richard Strauss and their contemporaries, with Dina Kuznetsova, Kate Lindsey and Joseph Kaiser, on February 16th and 18th; The Sweetest Path, with young singers performing music by Gounod, Faure, Ravel, Debussy and other French composers, on March 16th; and The Newest Deal, featuring new American works, including the premiere of Beautiful Ohio, a song cycle by Harold Meltzer, composed for Paul Appleby, and Gabriel Kahane's Craigslistlieder, comprised of settings of classified ads from craigslist.org, performed by artists including Anne-Carolyn Bird and Andrew Garland, on May 4th and 6th. The Merkin Concert Hall is located at 129 West 67th Street, between Broadway and Amsterdam Avenue. Further information can be found on the Merkin Concert Hall web site via the link from Off Broadway Venues & Companies in the Links section of New York TheatreNet.

Future productions at Theatre Row will include: Richard Hoehler's Fathers & Sons, with Hoehler and Edwin Matos Jr, in which a seasoned actor and his young co-star rehearse a series of scenes depicting male relationships, directed by Chris Dolman, previewing from September 15th at the Lion Theatre, opening on September 17th, produced by Joyce Johnson Deep End Productions and Little Victor Productions; and Tim Blake Nelson's Eye Of God, a love story between the lonely, the troubled, the forgotten and the radical believer who can save them, with Morgan Baker, Ehad Berisha, Benard Cummings, William Franke, Judson Jones, Helen Merino, Richard Mawe, Valerie Redd, Matt Savins, Doug Sheppard, and Shorey Walker, directed by Lisa Devine, previewing from October 2nd at the Kirk Theatre, opening on October 7th, produced by Theatre East. Theatre Row is located at 410 West 42nd Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues.

Classic Stage Company's 2009/2010 season will comprise The Age Of Iron, a retelling of the Trojan War, combining elements of William Shakespeare's Troilus And Cressida and Thomas Heywood's Iron Age, adapted and directed by Brian Kulick, from November 4th; David Ives's Venus In Fur, a new adaptation of the infamous erotic novel, which goes behind the scenes at an audition for a play where the lines between fantasy and reality blur, directed by Walter Bobbie, from January 13th; and Alexander Ostrovsky's The Forest, adapted by Kathleen Tolan, a romantic comedy about two vagabond actors posing as gentry at a country estate, with Dianne Wiest, from March 31st. The season will also include: the First Look Festival featuring staged readings of the work of a particular writer, with John Turturro in Luigi Pirandello's Henry IV, Six Characters In Search Of An Author and Right You Are, If You Think So; the Open Rehearsal Series, in which audiences experience different acting approaches and directorial interpretations of a classic work, with Mandy Patinkin exploring William Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing; and the Books On Stage Series, with readings of Helen Edmundson's adaptations of Leo Tolstoy's War And Peace and Anna Karenina. Classic Stage Company is located at 136 East 13th Street, between 3rd and 4th Avenues.

The 18th annual Broadway On Broadway event, the free outdoor concert in Times Square celebrating the start of the new Broadway season, will be held at 11.30am on September 13th. It will feature performances from almost every musical current and upcoming on Broadway, backed by a 30 piece orchestra. The event is presented by the Broadway League and the Times Square Alliance. Further information can be found on the Broadway On Broadway web site via the link from Festivals & Events in the Links section of New York TheatreNet.

Veanne Cox will perform the one woman play A Disaster Begins, inspired by the events of the 1900 hurricane that devastated Galveston, Texas, written and directed by Ain Gordon, at HERE Arts Center from October 9th. HERE Arts Center is located at 145 6th Avenue, between Spring and Broome Streets, entrance on Dominick Street.