Playbill Vault’s Today in Theater History: November 24

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1849 Birthday of writer Frances Hodgson Burnett, author of several Broadway plays in the early 20th century, including Little Lord Fauntleroy, The Little Princess, José’s Pretty Sisterand This man and me. His novel The secret garden has been adapted as a musical in 1991.

1924 Opening night at the Garrick Theater for Sidney Howardthe drama They knew what they wanted, about an elderly winemaker who tries to trick a mail-order bride into sending her the photo of his handsome young foreman. It won the Pulitzer Prize, ran 414 performances and was adapted as a musical The happiest guy in 1956.

1929 Actor Raymond Hitchcock dies. He made his first main appearance in The Yankee Consul at the Tremont Theater in Boston. He also appeared in Hitchy Koo, sapand Reel by Raymond Hitchcock.

1934 Birthday of the actor, lyricist and director Martin Charnin, late career collaborator of Richard Rodgers on musicals Two by two and I remember mom. His other works include Annie, upstairs at O’Neals, Hotspotand The first one. He began his career as one of the original Jets in West Side Story.

1936 Opening night of Cowardly Christmasit’s play Tonight at 8:30 p.m.composed of three acts in one, Heart amazed, hands across the seaand Red peppers. loose stars with Gertrude Laurent. The production has 118 performances at the National Theater.

1938 Clifford Odet written about a dentist going through what would later be called a midlife crisis in the drama Rocket to the Moon. It organized 131 performances at the Belasco and Windsor theatres.

1940 The first date, many legitimate theaters start Sunday performances. In the past, the Winter Garden, the Selwyn and the Century had presented variety shows on Sunday nights, but these were special vaudeville programs.

1942 Eleven years after creating the role, Paul Muni once again Legal Advisor. Elmer Rice wrote and directed the play, which runs for over 32 weeks.

1950 “Luck Be a Lady Tonight” as Frank Loesserit is guys and dolls opens at the Forty-sixth Street Theater. George S. Kaufman leads and Michael Kidd choreographed the Abe Burrows, Jo Swerlingand Loesser musical based on the stories of Damon Runyan. Sam Levene is Nathan Detroit, co-starring with Robert Alda (father of Alan Alda), Isabelle Bigley, Viviane Blaineand stocky kaye. The show received rave reviews and ran for a total of 1,200 performances.

1951 Audrey Hepburn stars in Anita Loosadaptation of Colette gigi, on the formation of a beautiful young courtesan. The show ran for 219 performances at the Fulton Theater and was adapted into a musical of the same title in 1958, starring Leslie Caron as Hepburn.

1961 Actor Ruth Chatterton dies at age 67. His stage appearances included The changing ones and Mary Rose.

1975 Richard Peaslee wrote the score for a musical adaptation of John Boccaccioit is The Decameroncalled, for some reason, Boccaccio. There are only seven performances at the Edison Theater, despite the presence of Armand Assante like Masetto.

1986 Smile, a musical adaptation of the film about the emotions behind the scenes of a beauty contest, opens at the Lunt-Fontanne Theater. Partly due to the presence of Marvin Hamlisch as a composer and Howard Ashman as a lyricist-librettist, the television series 60 minutes recounts its essays, previews and opening night. Unfortunately, the production ends after only 48 performances. Happy ending: Ashman loves the star Jodi Benson so much so that he helped her land the role of Ariel the mermaid in the blockbuster Disney animated film The little Mermaidfor which he provides the lyrics.

1994 With the stroke of a key, Broadway enters the Internet age as Playbill On-Line launches its new online theater news service.

1996 Opening night for the Broadway production of Juan Dariento music by Elliot Goldenthal, which had previously been seen Off-Off-Broadway and Off-Broadway. The production also marks the director/designer’s Broadway debut. Julie Taylor, whose masks, puppets and innovative scenic activity caused a sensation, even if the show itself only had 49 performances at the Théâtre Vivian Beaumont. Less than a year later, Taymor is taking Broadway by storm with her The Lion Kingusing many of the same techniques.

1997 In a solo show written and directed by Charles Messina, Paul Goncalves plays Queen rocker Freddie Mercury waking up from death with a new breath of life. In Mercury: The Afterlife and the Age of a Rock God, the singer struggles to make sense of his destiny and realizes that fame, fortune and talent are not enough for true peace of mind. “Beyond the darkness of his fear,” the press release read, “shines a light far brighter than the star he was on earth.” It organizes 216 performances at the Sanford Meisner Theatre.

2011 The West End transfer from Shakespeare’s Royal Companythe production of Mathilde the musical, first seen in Stratford-upon-Avon in November 2010, opens at the Cambridge Theatre. Based on Roald Dahl novel, the musical presents a book by the playwright Dennis Kelly; music and lyrics by an Australian comedian, musician and composer Tim Minchin; and led by Matthew Warchus. The production won a record seven Olivier Awards, including Best Actor in a Musical for Bertie Carvel‘s as Miss Trunchbull and Best Actress in a Musical for the four girls who share the title role. Matilda opened on Broadway in 2013.

2013 Repertoire productions of Harold Pinterit is No Man’s Land and Samuel Beckettit is Waiting for Godotfeaturing Ian McKellen and patrick stuart, opened on Broadway at the Cort Theatre. Directed by Sean Mathiasthe cast also includes Billy Crudup and Shuler Hensley.

2016 Florence Henderson, who starred on Broadway before making her mark on television as the ever-patient sitcom mother The Brady Groupdies at age 82. She appeared on Broadway in musicals I wish you were here, Fanny, and The girl who came to supperand also played the role of Laurey in the national tour of Oklahoma!

2019 Signature Theater’s Off-Broadway Revival The young man from Atlanta, Grand opening of Horton Foote’s Pulitzer Prize-winning drama. Directed by Michael Wilson, the production stars Tony nominee Kristine Nielsen (Gary) and Emmy nominee Aidan Quinn (Elementary).

2019 Theater For a New Audience’s production of Fefu and his friends, by the late María Irene Fornés, officially opens at the Polonsky Shakespeare Center in Brooklyn. Directed by Obie Award winner Lileana Blain-Cruz, the production sees the audience split into four groups (as the play is written) and move through the auditorium where each experiences the story in a different setting. and in a different order.

More birthdays from today: Catherine Nesbitt (1889-1982). Garson Kanin (1912-1999). Geraldine Fitzgerald (1913-2005). Sasson Gabay (born in 1947). Ruben Santiago-Hudson (born in 1956). Sarah Hyland (born in 1990).

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