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Summer Doldrums

You know you're in the summer doldrums when the New York Times lead article in the Sunday Arts and Leisure section last week was about lawns. This week, it's Rock 'n Roll. After the Tonys it seems the theater takes a summer nap. However, there are a few things happening on Broadway, on the road, and around the town.

This Wednesday, at the Booth, previews begin for An Evening With Jerry Herman. With Jerry will be Lee Roy Reams and Florence Lacey. Jerry, of course, is the composer/lyricist of some of the biggest hits ever on Broadway. Hello Dolly and Mame are the most popular, but there was the brilliant Mack and Mabel and a few others this trio will be performing material from. A must in my book!

Mandy Patinkin will be performing at the Orensanz Center down in Soho from July 21 through August 8th. The show's title is: In Concert: "Mamaloshen". I don't know what that title means, but Mandy could sing the phone book and I would still go. His last concert in New York was a complete sell-out and was extended. I'd call Tele-charge now. (212) 239-6200.

At the end of the month at Lincoln Center, the Korean Musical The Last Empress returns for a limited run. From July 31 through August 23rd the musical will be performed in Korean with English supertitles. "Visually stunning!" says Variety.

Michael "Phantom" Crawford will be performing as part of the Jones Beach Concert series on Saturday, July 25th. Michael has been on tour for the last several months playing to huge crowds across the country. Jones Beach is a fun place, right on the great south bay of Long Island and a perfect outdoor setting for the music of the night. Now, if only Warner Brothers would simply cast him in the film of The Phantom of the Opera. It's such an obvious casting decision. With all the Travolta, Banderas bruhaha, the casting of Crawford would create a world wide buzz!

Last week to catch Anthony LaPaglia in his Tony winning performance in A View From The Bridge at the Neil Simon theater. Tony Danza takes over the role on July 21st. Also last chance to catch Joel Grey in Chicago as Mr. Cellophane through July 29th.

Kim Huber is the Belle of Broadway in Disney's Beauty and the Beast, having taken over after Deborah Gibson departed. Catch her and say hello at the stage door after the performance. Kim just may know who you are if you post on our All That Chat message board as she recently responded to a few questions about her stint in the musical.

Fosse: A Celebration in Song and Dance previews at the Ford Center in Toronto this Thursday, July 16th. Ann Reinking will be co-directing which will assure authentic Fosse choreography. Sweet Charity, Chicago, Damn Yankees and Cabaret are just a few of the shows Fosse choreographed. After Toronto the show moves to Boston and then L.A. prior to Broadway.

If you didn't catch Christopher Plummer in Barrymore on Broadway you can now catch the tour. Currently, he's in Denver through August 2nd then heads to San Francisco for a month before continuing the tour to other cities. He won a Tony Award for this role and it's a brilliant evening in the theater. A must!

Ands speaking of great acting, you can catch Philip Bosco, Helen Hunt and Brian Murray as you brush up your Shakespeare with Twelfth Night at Lincoln Center. It's at the Vivian Beaumont and opens on Thursday, July 16th.

If you're thinking of seeing Jerry Seinfeld on Broadway in his show, I'm Telling You For The Last Time, at the Broadhurst during its limited run, tickets are even more limited. The N.Y. Post reports that only 500 seats per performance will be sold to the public with the rest going to the swells at HBO for comps. Not to worry, it's being taped and will be shown on telly. Dates are August 6th through 8th with a taping on the 9th.

Out Las Vegas way, the Debbie Reynolds Hotel and Casino will be auctioned off in the near future. The Broadway style show, Broadway ... Off-Broadway, enjoyed a successful run there, but vacated by choice rather than run the risk of losing sets and costumes. The show will be reincarnated at the San Remo Hotel for Labor Day. The San Remo stage is tiny the cast will consist of 8 performers instead of the 22 who performed at the Debbie Reynolds theater. Too bad. It really was the best show in town.

Las Vegas entertainment critic, Michael Paskevich, ripped Lord of the Dance apart in his review of the Irish step-dance show at the New York, New York Hotel/Casino. It'll probably sell out nightly during its unlimited run anyway. Still, Broadway ... Off-Broadway deserves a better home than the San Remo and New York, New York would have been the perfect venue. Oh well. That's Show Bizness!

This week, we'll be debuting a new column called "On Campus" by Brian Silliman. Also in the works will be a new "Regional Theater" section covering resident companies in various cities across the country. There are also four other sections of Talkin' Broadway under construction and we'll keep you posted as they debut. Until then, there are new restaurants reviewed in our Restaurant Revue, new CD's in Sound Advice, more touring shows in On The Road. Also join Michael Reynolds on Tuesday in his latest installment of Broadway Bound as we follow the making of a Broadway musical. Robert Rusie will continue Broadway 101 with his fourth installment covering the history of Broadway from 1920 to 1930. That should be up within the week. And, of course, what would Thursdays be without Christina's World? Ed Feldman will have his latest interview in our Spotlight On section with Will Chase from Rent soon. This should come about around the same time Will takes over for Matt Bogart in Miss Saigon in the role of Chris.

Summer doldrums? I wish.

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