1. For a deeper look into the Fringe festival than what we’ve given you so far, go to the Reader, which highlights some of our picks, as well as some new options, like Rie Shontel’s Mama Juggs and MelnColly Theatre Company’s Nearly Naked. Am I sensing a theme here?2. The New York cast of Chinglish will look basically the same as what you saw here in Chicago, sans one of the lead characters Daniel, who was played by James Waterston, but will now be taken over by Gary Wilmes. Chris Jones writes, “The replacement of Waterson (sic) was expected. More surprising is the decision to go with a well-respected actor (who appeared in the Elevator Repair Service production of Gatz and has several Chicago credits) rather than a ticket-selling star.” I get the last part, but I totally missed the memo on Waterson being dropped as “expected.” Anyone out there in the know want to fill me in? Wilmes has also been seen in the tour August: Osage County made of Austraila.
3. Profiles Theatre is pushing back A Behanding in Spokane again, due to Darrell W. Cox’s emergency surgery for a detached retina. The play will now run from October 16 to December 4. Because this interferes with Assisted Living by Deirdre O’Connor, they’ll be moving to the Second Stage. Best of luck Darrell.4. Opening tonight in previews is a play about yuppies who are worried about kids and having them and life changes. Yup, it’s The Kid Thing by the Chicago Dramatists. This set of yuppies has a bit of a twist; they’re two lesbian couples at a dinner party.
5. Hershey Felder (yes, real name) is coming to Chicago again with Maestro: The Art of Leonard Bernstein, his first-person account of Leonard Bernstein’s life, complete with music. Director Joel Zwick takes it on at the Royal George. The show begins previews November 1 and plays through December. When it played in Los Angeles, Variety said, “Deftly and amusingly, Felder explores the roots of Bernstein’s themes in the great composers of the past, as well as the Jewish folk tunes, which forged a bond between a willful son and stubborn Old World father.”
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