PLAYBILL.COM'S THEATRE WEEK IN REVIEW, March 15-21: Aladdin Flies Onto Broadway and Vampires Will Dance Again

By Robert Simonson
21 Mar 2014

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Nicholas Hytner
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

The Tony Awards Administration Committee met March 20 for the third time this season to determine the eligibility of five Broadway productions for the 68th Annual Tony Awards.

The five productions discussed include Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, Machinal, Outside Mullingar, Bronx Bombers and The Bridges of Madison County.

No big surprises emerged. Jessie Mueller will be considered eligible in the Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical category for her performance in Beautiful. And Debra Messing and Brian F. O'Byrne will be considered eligible in the Best Performance by an Actress/Actor in a Leading Role in a Play categories, respectively, for their performances in Outside Mullingar.



The 2014 Tony Awards will be broadcast live from Radio City Music Hall June 8 at 8 PM ET on CBS. Tony winner Hugh Jackman will again host.

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Nicholas Hytner is on his last season of his all-in-all pretty triumphant reign as artistic director of London's National Theater. And this week, it was announced what he will be up to during that home stretch.

Not the least of his activities will the opening in September of the Dorfman (previously the Cottesloe) as part of the theatre's current 80-million-pound NT refurbishment. It will re-open with a British premiere that is yet to be named. There will also be new plays by such up-and-coming names as David Hare and Tom Stoppard.

The Hare will be directed by Hytner's successor, Rufus Norris, while the Stoppard (as yet untitled) will go to Hytner himself. There will also be a new, still untitled, play by Richard Bean, to be staged in the Lyttelton in the summer.

An additional press conference will be held shortly after all the playwrights figure out what to name their plays.

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Roman Polanksi needs money. Either that, or he really likes Dance of the Vampires, the Broadway musical bomb that features a score by Meatloaf muse Jim Steinman — enough so that he has decided to helm a new Paris production of the show in October. (Being a charitable-minded sort, I prefer to think the former.)

Actually, Polanski has quite a long history with the material. He directed and appeared in the 1967 film "The Fearless Vampire Killers," which was later adapted by Steinman and book writer Michael Kunze for the 1997 German-language musical production, Tanz der Vampire, whose Vienna world premiere he directed.

David Ives was later brought on for the 2002 Broadway production, which starred Michael Crawford in his first and only Broadway appearance following The Phantom of the Opera. Following a chilly critical reception, the $12 million musical shuttered after 61 previews and 56 regular performances.