Blithe Spirit

Blithe Spirit

Blithe Spirit


BLITHE SPIRIT

Number of Previews: 20
Number of Performances: 145
First Preview : February 26, 2009
Opening Night : March 15, 2009
Closing Night : July 19, 2009

Opening Night Cast
Opening Night Cast
Christine Ebersole (Elvira)
Angela Lansbury (Madame Arcati)
Rupert Everett (Charles)
Jayne Atkinson (Ruth)
Simon Jones (Doctor Bradman)
Susan Louise O’Connor (Edith)
Deborah Rush (Mrs. Bradman)



OVERVIEW

Blithe Spirit, one of Noel Coward’s most popular comedies, was first seen on Broadway, in 1941, the same year it was produced in London where it set British box office records and was the longest running comedy (1997 performances) until it was eventually surpassed by Boeing-Boeing in the 1970’s. The original Broadway production played nearly two years and co-starred Leonora Corbett, Mildred Natwick, Clifton Webb and Peggy Wood. It was last seen on Broadway in an all-star production in 1987 with Richard Chamberlain, Blythe Danner, Judith Ivey, and Geraldine Page, in her final Broadway appearance. Coward, in his autobiography, claimed he wrote the play in five days during a holiday. Only two lines of dialogue were removed before its first production in London.

Blithe Spirit starred Four time Tony Award-winner Angela Lansbury (Sweeney Todd,Gypsy, Dear World, Mame), Rupert Everett (My Best Friend’s Wedding, An Ideal Husband), Two time Tony Award winner Christine Ebersole (Grey Gardens, 42nd Street), and Two time Tony nominee Jayne Atkinson (“24”, “Recount” Enchanted April) Simon Jones (Waiting in the Wings, The Real Thing) and Deborah Rush (Noises Off!) round out the cast. The play was directed by two-time Tony Award winner Michael Blakemore (Kiss Me, Kate, Copenhagen).

Angela Lansbury received her fifth Tony Award, along with the Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle and Drama League Awards for her portrayal of Madame Arcati.

AWARDS & REVIEWS

Awards

2009 Tony Award® Best Featured Actress in a Play – Angela Lansbury (winner)

2009 Drama Desk Award Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play

Reviews

“Ms. Lansbury brings seven decades of experience with her – in work ranging from fabled musicals (“Mame,” “Sweeney Todd'”) to classic dark films (“Gaslight,” “The Manchurian Candidate”) – to the role of Madame Arcati, her juiciest in years. Even when she’s off her lines, she’s on top of her character, and she demonstrates how an expert can turn surface silliness into something of real substance.”
Ben Brantley, The New York Times

“The starry cast of the latest Broadway revival of “Blithe Spirit” delivers the goods, artfully keeping the classic Noel Coward comedy spinning merrily at the Shubert Theatre. But then it helps to have Angela Lansbury on hand to play Madame Arcati, the irrepressible spiritualist who delights in contacting those beyond the grave. She makes it look easy _ and blissfully funny _ as the woman who inadvertently sets up an otherworldly love triangle.”
Michael Kuchwara, Assosciated Press

“When a scintillating comedy, masterly direction and superior performances come together, what have you got? A rip-roaring revival of Noel Coward’s “Blithe Spirit” that lights up Broadway’s Shubert Theatre.”
John Simon, Bloomberg News

CREDITS

Opening Night Production Credits

Theatre Owned / Operated by The Shubert Organization (Phillip J. Smith: Chairman; Robert E. Wankel: President)

Produced by Jeffrey Richards, Jerry Frankel, Steve Traxler, Scott M. Delman, Bat-Barry Productions, Broadway Across America (John Gore, CEO; Thomas B. McGrath, Chairman; Beth Williams, COO & Head of Production), Ken Davenport, Michael Filerman, Jeffrey Finn, Arlene Scanlan, Ronald Frankel, JK Productions, Kathleen K. Johnson, Patty Ann McKinnon, Judith Resnick, Terry Schnuck, Jamie deRoy/Alan D. Marks, Zev Bufman and Barbara & Buddy Freitag/Wendy Federman

Written by Noël Coward

Directed by Michael Blakemore; Associate Director: Kim Weild

Scenic Design by Peter J. Davison; Costume Design by Martin Pakledinaz; Lighting Design by Brian MacDevitt; Sound Design by Peter Fitzgerald; Wig Design by Paul Huntley; Associate Scenic Design: Ted LeFevre; Associate Costume Design: MaryAnn D. Smith; Associate Lighting Design: Caroline Chao; Assistant Sound Design: Megan Henninger

General Manager: Richards / Climan, Inc.; Company Manager: Bruce Klinger; Associate Gen. Mgr: John Gendron

Production Supervisor: Steven Zweigbaum; Production Manager: Aurora Productions; Production Stage Manager: Steven Zweigbaum; Stage Manager: Àra Marx

General Press Representative: Jeffrey Richards Associates and Irene Gandy; Advertising: Serino Coyne, Inc.; Casting: Telsey + Company; Psychic Consultant: Paula Roberts; Photographer: Robert J. Saferstein

Opening Night Cast

Christine Ebersole (Elvira)
Angela Lansbury (Madame Arcati)
Rupert Everett (Charles)
Jayne Atkinson (Ruth)
Simon Jones (Doctor Bradman)
Susan Louise O’Connor (Edith)
Deborah Rush (Mrs. Bradman)

Understudies: Mark Capri (Charles, Doctor Bradman), Elizabeth Norment (Edith, Elvira, Ruth), Sandra Shipley (Madame Arcati, Mrs. Bradman).


PHOTO GALLERY

Photos

‘The Audience’ Casts Its First Prime Ministers for Broadway

The producers of Peter Morgan’s The Audience, starring Academy Award winner Helen Mirren, announced today that Geoffrey Beevers, Michael Elwyn, Richard…

Read more

Tickets Are Now On Sale For MTC’s ‘Constellations’ & ‘Airline Highway’

Single tickets are now on sale for Manhattan Theatre Club’s upcoming Broadway productions of Constellations, the acclaimed new play by Nick Payne, directed…

Read more

‘A Gentleman’s Guide…’ Announces A New “D’ysquith” To Join The Murderous Musical

It was announced today that Catherine Walker will take over the role of ‘Phoebe…

Read more

Broadway Grosses September 22 – September 28, 2014

Broadway’s Best Shows knows that you want to see the best of the best! To…

Read more

First-Ever Broadway Revival of ‘Children of A Lesser God’ To Open in 2015-2016 Season

Producer Hal Luftig announced today the first-ever Broadway revival of the Tony…

Read more

The Highly Anticipated ‘Finding Neverland’ Will Fly To Broadway in March

Producer Harvey Weinstein and director Diane Paulus announced today that Finding…

Read more

‘You Can’t Take It With You’ Broadway Reviews

Broadway Reviews NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW “The only downside to the unconditional upper called “You Can’t Take It With You,” which wafted open…

Read more

‘Chicago’ Will Welcome Back Its Original Stars To Celebrate Becoming The Second Longest Running Musical In Broadway History

On Sunday evening, November 23 (7 p.m.), in a celebratory landmark performance, the company of Broadway’s record-breaking hit musical Chicago is…

Read more

New National Tour of ‘Annie’ Launches Today

Troika Entertainment, LLC presents a new U.S. national tour of Annie, which launches today, September 26 at the Fisher Theatre in Detroit, MI. In the title…

Read more

Lisa D’Amour’s Broadway-Bound ‘Airline Highway’ Announces Chicago Casting

Casting has been announced for the Steppenwolf Theatre Company world-premiere production of Airline Highway. Written by Lisa D’Amour and directed…

Read more

‘Wolf Hall’ Will Sail Across The Pond and On To Broadway This Spring!

After critically acclaimed and sold out engagements at the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Swan Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon and at the Aldwych Theatre…

Read more

Adams’s ‘The Death of Klinghoffer’ Opens October 20, 2014

In what many John Adams admirers consider his greatest operatic composition, the Met’s new production premieres almost 30 years after the events chronicled…

Read more

‘Blithe Spirit’ National Tour to Welcome Broadway and West End Actor Simon Jones

The producers of the North American tour of Noël Coward’s smash-hit comedic play, Blithe Spirit announced today that Simon Jones ("Hitchhiker’s…

Read more

‘Flashdance – The Musical’ Tours North American Beginning This October

Rehearsals began this week for the cast of the upcoming North American tour of Flashdance – The Musical, the stage adaptation of the 1983 hit film…

Read more