Playbill Vault’s Today in Theater History: November 8

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1913 Birthday of June Hovik, better known as June Havocstill better known as Baby June, the character based on her in the musical Gypsy. The show pretty much sums up his childhood with a mother behind the wheel in vaudeville’s later years and a sister who would later become Gypsy Rose Lee. Havoc has his own busy career on Broadway, appearing in Friend Joey, Mexican cart ride, State Affairsand his own room, Marathon ’33. She is present to advise the casting of the original 1959 Gypsy, as good as revival 2003.

1926 Opening night at the Imperial Theater for the George and Ira Gershwin musical Oh Kay!about hijinks involving rum runners at a Long Island estate. Gertrude Laurent and Victor Moore are featured in the show, which has 256 performances and features the standards “Someone To Watch Over Me”, “Do Do Do”, and “Clap Yo’ Hands”. In 2012, a reworked version of the musical opened on Broadway under the title good job if you can get it.

1932 Opening night for Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein IIthe operetta music in the air at the Alvin Theater, beginning a run of 342 performances. The sheet music includes “I’ve Told Ev’ry Little Star” and “The Song Is You”. The cast includes Walter Slezak, Al Shean, Natalie Halland a pre-i love lucy Viviane Vance.

1939 life with fathera family comedy based on Clarence Day‘s stories written by Howard Lindsay and Russell Crouse, opens at the Empire Theatre. The cast includes Lindsay himself who is reprising a role that was turned down by Alfred Lunt. He appears onstage with his wife offstage, Dorothee Stickney. Lindsay had hoped the play would last at least six months. He gets his wish; the play lasted over eight years, setting a new record for a non-musical play, racking up 3,224 performances.

1950 John Gielgud and a young Richard Burton appear together in Christopher Fryit is The lady is not to be burned at the Théâtre Royale for 151 performances. Gielgud also directs the romantic comedy set in the 15th century.

1973 Room Boom Boom by David Rabe opens at the Vivian Beaumont Theater, marking the first time that Joseph Dad has a show at Lincoln Center. Madeleine Kahn stars as a middle-aged woman realizing that her adult life isn’t, in fact, much better than her abusive childhood. Charles Dunning and Robert Loggia co-starred in the show which earned mixed reviews and a short run of just 37 performances.

1979 Romantic comedy opens at the Barrymore Theater with stars mia farrow and Anthony Perkins. The Bernard Slade the game received mixed reviews and ran 396 performances.

1990 SIX DEGREES OF SEPARATION opens at Lincoln Center after a successful off-Broadway run. Realized by Jerry Zaks and featuring Stockard Channing, Courtney B. Vanceand John Cunninghamthe show about a black impostor posing as a college friend of a white family’s son has 485 performances at its new home.

2001 Roundabout Theater Companythe rebirth of Claire Booth Luceis not an altogether affectionate comic treatise on her sex, The womenfeatures a constellation of contemporary stars, including Kristen Johnson, McClanahan Street, Cynthia Nixon, Marie-Louise Wilsonand Jennifer Tilly.

2006 After numerous stage film adaptations, Broadway gets a musical based on a special. How the Grinch Stole Dr. Seuss’ Christmas opened at the Hilton Theater and proved so popular that it come back next year. Patrick Page stars as the greedy green main character, with John Cullum as his faithful dog.

2007 He growls, he mixes, he tramples… he sings! Mary Shelley’s 19th century creature is reimagined for Broadway in Young Frankenstein, Mel Brooks and Thomas Meehan‘s based on Brooks’ 1974 motion picture comedy, opening at the Hilton Theatre. The stars of the production Roger Bart as Dr. Frankenstein, Megan Mullally like the love of Doctor Elizabeth, Sutton Foster as charming assistant Inga, Shuler Hensley as a monster, Andrea Martin as matron of the Frau Blucher castle, and Christopher Fitzgerald like the hunchback Igor. Critics are less enthusiastic than for Brooks’ previous Broadway effort, the resounding success The producersbut the production still runs at 485 performances.

2011 venus in fur, David Ives‘ two-character play about the relationship between a starving actor and a dominating writer-director, opens on Broadway at Manhattan Drama ClubSamuel J. Friedman Theater. Nina Ariandawho originated the role of Vanda in the 2010 Off-Broadway production premiere, stars opposite Hugues Dancy. Arianda wins a 2012 Tony Award for her performance.

2012 Anne, the 1977 show that introduced generations of children to the melodious optimism of traditional Broadway musicals, opens in a new Broadway production at the Palace Theatre. The 35th anniversary revival of the story of a red-haired orphan in the care of a billionaire Republican during the Great Depression stars Lilla Crawford in the title role, Katie Finneran as Miss Hannigan, and Anthony Warlow as Oliver “Dad” Warbucks.

2015 Marc Acito, Jay Kuoand Lorenzo Thioneit’s musical Allegianceinspired by the veteran actor’s childhood George Takei, opens on Broadway at the Longacre Theatre. Takei plays alongside Lea Salonga and Telly Leung. The production has 111 performances.

2018 King Konga Broadway musical based on Merian C. Cooper’s 1932 adventure novel that inspired the 1933 Hollywood classic – and a subsequent film franchise – opens at the Broadway Theatre. The centerpiece of the production is its titular star: a 20-foot-tall, 2,000-pound puppeteer-operated gorilla whose lifelike face is capable of expressing a jaw-dropping range of emotions. The creators of the puppet, Sonny Tilders and Creature Technology Company, receive a special Tony Award.

More birthdays from today: bram stoker (1847-1912). Pierre Weiss (1916-1982). Saks Gene (1921-2015). Nicolas Kepros (born in 1932). Alfred Woodard (born in 1952). chuck cooper (born in 1954). Parker Posey (born in 1968). Gretchen Mol (born in 1972). David Turn (born in 1974).

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