Drama Club

THEATER: Carol Channing, “Into The Woods,” Bradley Cooper Bares On Broadway, And More!

In the dog days of August, your trusty Queerty theater column steams up with hot gossip and hotter boys.


It’s a bit of he-said/he-said among New York’s theater scribes about whether the current Public Theater revival of Into the Woods will indeed transfer to Broadway. The New York TimesPatrick Healy gives a rather optimistic report that producer Joey Parness is trying to raise the money to get the Sondheim show, now staging outdoors at Central Park’s Delacorte Theater, onto the Great White Way. Meanwhile, infamous New York Post columnist Michael Riedel claims the rest of Broadway is scoffing at the ridiculousness of the idea, especially given some particularly negative reviews.

Here we go again! In New York’s looney theater world, any production that gets the teeniest bit of praise suddenly becomes a Broadway contender, particularly if it’s a Sondheim show. In an era where it’s like climbing every mountain to raise funds for a new musical, producers have taken to circling like vultures around limited engagements of old classics, regardless of quality. It happens several times a season, attacking everything from moderate off-Broadway hits to buzzworthy one-off concerts. This Into The Woods, we predict, won’t even find its way out of Central Park.


Speaking of hot guys stepping outside their comfort zone, People magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive, Bradley Cooper, just finished playing Joseph Merrick in the Williamstown Theatre Festival’s sold-out production of The Elephant Man, sans makeup or prosthetics. Now comes word that Cooper may take the show, in a limited run, to Broadway, where David Bowie, Mark Hamill and Billy Crudup have played Merrick in previous productions.

“We’re going to try to do it on Broadway next fall,” he told E! correspondent Marc Malkin Tuesday night. “We’re going to try to nail it down and do a limited run.” Looking at the press photo (right), we can’t help but notice Cooper is uncharacteristically fur-free. “We wanted to make it like a blank slate,” he tells Malkin. “I didn’t wax it. I just shaved it.” [E! Online]


Out actor Randy Harrison (Queer as Folk) is all growed up and playing a summer stint off-Broadway in Silence! The Musical, the sleeper-hit parody of Silence of the Lambs. Apparently, Harrison is having a grand ol’ time among the cannibals in Times Square: “There was a fetish party after the show at one of the bars [in the theater complex] and we were all having a good time walking on a man rolled into a rug,” he tells Out magazine. “We got kicked out for not having wrist bands. We were like “we work here” but the bouncers wouldn’t have any of it. I wasn’t finished walking on that man. [Out]


If you happen to be in Long Beach, get thee to the California Woman’s Conference on September 23 and 24. A panel called “Legendary Ladies of the Stage and Screen” will feature a conversation with Julie Newmar, Tippi Hedren, Rose Marie and the irrepressible Carol Channing. The honor of being in the same room as the great Miss Channing should be on the top of every serious theater queen’s Bucket List. We met her once, years back at a book signing at West Hollywood’s now shuttered Different Light Bookstore, and her charms still have our heart tap-dancing. [Theatermania]


Photos: Greg Hernandez, T. Charles Erickson

Don't forget to share: