Playbill Vault’s Today in Theater History: December 29


1919 The Lafayette Players of New York open the new Dunbar Theater in Philadelphia with a production of Within the framework of the law. The theater, named for poet Paul Lawrence Dunbar, seats 1,400 and is dedicated to black productions for black audiences. The name is then changed to the Lincoln Theatre. It was demolished in the 1950s.

1926 devil in cheese (yes, it’s a comedy), written by Tom Cushing, has a cast that includes Bela Lugosi as a Greek priest. An archaeologist eats old cheese and suddenly understands his lovesick daughter. The play ran for 157 performances at the Charles Hopkins and Plymouth theatres.

1932 Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur transform Charles Bruce Millhollandpart not produced Broadway Napoleon in comedy XXth century. It runs at the Broadhurst Theater for 19 weeks. Moffat Johnston and Eugenie Leontovitch appear in the cast. In 1978, Cy Coleman, Betty Comden and Adolph Green adapted the play(s) into a musical In the 20th century.

1953 Judith Anderson and Mildred Dunnock are In the summer house. José Quintero directs Jane Bowles story of a domineering mother, somewhat acclaimed, for only 55 performances. A 1993 Joanne Akalaitis-the revival directed at Lincoln Center is also doing poorly.

1973 jason robard and Colleen Dewhurst star in a revival of Eugene O’Neillit is A Moon for the Wicked at the Morosco Theater. It holds 313 performances, and the performances become final for a generation.

1998 The Broadway revival of Annie take your gun, featuring Bernadette Peters and Tom Wopat, begins performances at the kennedy center in Washington, D.C. The Kennedy Center engagement is the production’s only pre-Broadway stop. The revival won two Tony Awards and had over 1,000 performances.

2004 Sylvia Hercher, 91, Broadway agent, general manager, music publisher and producer, who received a 2000 Tony Award special prize for his life’s work, dies in New York.

2014 Motown legends The Temptations and The Four Tops begin a week-long special engagement at Broadway’s Palace Theatre.

Today’s birthdays: Jules Bledsoe (1897-1943). Viveca Lindfors (1920-1995). Inga Swenson (born in 1932). Joseph Maher (1933-1988). Mary Tyler Moore (1936-2017). Jon Voight (born in 1938). Ted Danson (born in 1947). Yvonne Elliman (born in 1951). Charlayne Woodard (born in 1955). Patricia Clarkson (born in 1959). Martin Moran (born in 1959). Amanda Green (born in 1963). Jennifer Ehle (born in 1969). Jude’s Law (born in 1972). Mekhi Phifer (born in 1974).


Annie take your gun to Broadway

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