Playbill Vault is in theater history today: May 7


1915 Among the dead after the sinking of the Lusitania are producer-manager Charles Frohman and playwright Charles Klein. Frohman’s first success was Shenandoah. In 1893 he opened the Empire Theater in New York with his own stock company. Two pieces by Klein, The auctioneer and The music master, were produced by David Belasco. At the time of his death, Klein was a play reader for Frohman.

1924 This marriage turns out short. Tallulah bankhead stars in the drama Eliot C. Williams which takes place in London only 20 times. Catherine nesbitt, Herbert marshall, and Auriol Lee are also in the cast.

1953 Lilo is the star, but a young dancer named Gwen verdon steal the show from Cole porter‘s Cancan, which opens its series of 892 performances at the Shubert Theater.

1963 In Minneapolis, Minnesota, Tyrone Guthriethe theater of the same name opens with a production of Hamlet featuring George grizzard like the Prince and Jessica tandy like Gertrude. Ralph Rapson designed the complex which cost $ 2.5 million to build and equip.

1973 Ferenc Molnar‘s The game is the thing opens on Broadway at the Bijou Theater. Feist gene stages the 11-week run with a cast that includes David dukes and Elizabeth owens.

1977 Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht Happy ending made his Broadway debut at the Martin Beck Theater, after a stint at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. The production is supposed to star Meryl Streep, Christopher Lloyd, and Grayson Hall, but Lloyd fell and tore two ligaments in his leg during rehearsals, and stunt double Bob Gunton is playing his part on opening night. A few nights later, Gunton himself fell ill and Lloyd was reminded early of his recovery, playing with crutches and a cast from ankle to hip.

nineteen eighty one Austin pendleton directed Lillian hellman‘s Little foxes, which opens at the Martin Beck Theater on Broadway. Elizabeth taylor debuted at Great White Way in the production which co-stars Maureen Stapleton, Anthony Zerbe, and Anne Talman.

1982 Craig Carnelia and Jeffrey Kindley ask Is there life after high school? as their high school reunion revue opens at the Ethel Barrymore Theater on Broadway. With a cast including Alma Cuervo, Sandy Faison, Harry Groener and stunt double Scott Bakula, the musical will only feature 12 performances, but will become a favorite in community theaters.

2008 Manhattan Theater Clubthe rebirth of Caryl Churchill‘s Top Girls opens at the Biltmore Theater. Elisabeth wonder, Martha plimpton, and Marisa Tomei Star.

2017 Tony Award-winning theater veteran Barbara Cook, who started her Broadway career with the 1951 musical Flahooley, announces that she retired from performing at 89. Cook won a Tony Award for his portrayal of Marian Paroo in the original production of The man of music, and has also created roles in musicals, including She loves Me, Candid, Simple and Fantasy, and The herb harp. His last Broadway appearance was the 2010 Musical Retrospective. Sondheim on Sondheim.

Today’s birthdays: Darren mcgavin (1922-2006). Anne Baxter (1923-1985). Gordon davidson (1933-2016). Nicolas hytner (born 1956). Eric LaJuan Summers (1982-2019).


From The Music Man to She Loves Me: A look back at Barbara Cook on Broadway

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