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  BROADWAY BUZZ

Neil Patrick Harris To Play Transgender Rocker In “Hedwig And The Angry Inch” On Broadway

880179-neil_patrick_harris2It’s time for Neil Patrick Harris to hang up his production credits in exchange for a pair of 8-inch heels, as Playbill reports he’ll star in the Broadway premiere of Hedwig and the Angry Inch next year. Who says you need a mommy and a daddy if daddy can do it all?!

“I am simultaneously ecstatic and terrified to be stepping into Hedwig’s heels,” NPH said in a statement. “It is truly a once-in-a-lifetime role and I can’t wait to begin the journey.”

The new adaptation of the musical comedy will star NPH as Hedwig, the fictional transgender rock ‘n’ roll singer-turned-cult-phenomenon after John Cameron Mitchell originated the role both on stage and in film. Though it seems like nobody could nail “The Origin of Love” like JCM himself, he sounds optimistic. “Who better to pass the wig to but the finest entertainer of his generation?”, he said in a statement.

The musical’s Off-Off Broadway production managed to rack up a handful of awards—including Obies for John Cameron Mitchell and composer Stephen Trask—but will it translate well on the Great White Way?

Tell us what you think in the comments below.

By:           Matthew Tharrett
On:           Jun 17, 2013
Tagged: , ,

  • 8 Comments
    • Sohobod
      Sohobod

      He shouldn’t. “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” is really not a very good piece, no matter who was in it.

      Jun 17, 2013 at 5:21 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • GreatGatsby2011
      GreatGatsby2011

      Yes!!! I will travel across the country to see this. Better start saving up my vacation days now.

      Jun 17, 2013 at 6:12 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Merv
      Merv

      Should be epic. Hedwig is one of the few musicals where every song is good.

      Jun 17, 2013 at 6:30 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jonathan26
      Jonathan26

      I am grateful to have seen the original staging of Hedwig at the Jane Street Theater in NYC on a date with with a man who, fifteen years later, is still the love of my life. The show was a magical experience and one of the best lead performances in live musical theater that I’ve ever seen. From start to finish, JCM was a breathtaking creature to behold. I applaud the show’s arrival on B’way and hope that JCM will be an integral part its production. I cannot think of another well known figure beside NPH who can bring the same edgy brilliance to the complicated role of Hedwig.

      Jun 17, 2013 at 8:38 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kathy11
      Kathy11

      Eh – another cis gay guy playing a trans woman in a play written by a cis gay guy that stereotypes trans people.

      It’s not always edifying to be blessed with cis guys id projections on trans women. Still – gotta love love the ridiculousness level. Someone transitions not because they’re trans – but to please someone else. They have a complication from surgery that has never existed anywhere in our real word experiences and the denouement of the project is the triumphal recognition that being trans is wrong – a false identity – you should just be a happy gay man.

      Other than that – great play.

      Jun 18, 2013 at 10:41 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ScaryRussianHeather
      ScaryRussianHeather

      @Kathy11:

      You obviously reject the artist’s own words about the gender constraints you demand of his fictional groundbreaking character. Not to mention that this play was written over 15 years ago.

      And WHERE are you getting that ending that “trans is wrong”? eyeroll. Since you admit the story is just unique fiction, you also try and infer that Hedwig was a traditional transwoman? Did you even hear Hedwig once say before her surgery that she was born the wrong gender anyway? I guess Aristophanes should have just shut up, too.

      JCM deliberately left Hedwig’s gender ~ambiguous at the end to let the art inspire thought and dialog.

      JCM’s words:

      http://www.popmatters.com/pm/feature/mitchell-john-cameron/

      “If those resonances come up, fine, but they’re not the point of it. It is Hedwig’s story, about what she does with the inch that she’s given in life, how she finds a way to think of herself as whole. And it’s hopefully an earned realization rather than a tacked on one, and she really has come through a lot, and has created, through circumstance and will, a person that’s new. She [begins thinking] of herself as neither man nor woman, or half a man, but she realizes that she’s both, by accident. And it’s better than being one. The way she got there is very painful.”

      “You know, coming out as a gay man, it was very much about finding my own identity and dealing with labeling. I quickly found that I didn’t really fit into “gay culture,” as identified by many gay people, and that it can be just as confining as straight culture, not least in the way that bisexual people are told that “they can’t make up their mind.” I mean, the variety of sexuality versus gender, as these can be quite mutually exclusive: even just in doing Hedwig, I’ve learned a lot about definitions. Most post-op transsexuals are straight! This was new to me, but now that I think about it, since there are more straight people, the percentage of people who feel gender dysphoria should be the same, more straight. And those people who never felt gay, change their sex, and find now that the only people who accept them are maybe a gay community, and they don’t feel gay, and have never gone through the same feelings that a gay kid might have.”

      Jun 18, 2013 at 3:48 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ScaryRussianHeather
      ScaryRussianHeather

      @Jonathan26:

      Here’s a video of the original. The audio is a little muted on the monologues but still great. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LixmUgFKZhI

      Jun 18, 2013 at 3:50 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • bcbear4u
      bcbear4u

      Broadyway likes its gays stereotypical like in “La Cage” or “The Producers”. Those characters were played for laughs (and got, them rightly so). “Hedwig” may still be a bit too heavy, however, open it off-Broadway, get good reviews, then move it uptown…that I could see happening. And it’s about time NPH got back on stage!!

      Jun 18, 2013 at 6:12 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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