Sunday, October 17, 2010

Minnesotans on Broadway

When I was in New York City last weekend I was thrilled to see Minnesota so well represented on (and off) Broadway.  Unfortunately I didn't get to see any of them (too many shows, too little time), but I did walk by the theaters and smile at seeing their names "in lights."

Guthrie favorite Sally Wingert is making her Broadway debut in the comedy La Bete, which also stars David Hyde Pierce and Mark Rylance (who recently played the title role in Peer Gynt at the Guthrie).  Whether she's playing a leading role in such shows as Third or Faith Healer, or stealing scenes in a small role in Private Lives,  she's always amazing.  She's appearing in Ten Thousand Things Doubt next February, so if you (or I) want to see her on Broadway, you better act fast!

I was tickled to see that directly across 45th street from Sally's show at the Music Box Theater was another Guthrie alum, TR Knight.  He's performing with Patrick Stewart in the David Mamet play A Life in the Theatre at the Schoenfeld Theatre.  You may know TR from his role as George in Grey's Anatomy, but before that he was an actor at the Guthrie and other local theaters, beginning with his first role as Tiny Tim in A Christmas Carol at the age of five.  Unfortunately I began my Guthrie subscription a year or two after TR left to find his fortune in NYC and LA, but I did get to see him in a reading of The Laramie Project a few years ago.  Since leaving Grey's he's returned to his theater roots, so I know it's only a matter of time before he returns home to do a show.

Last but not least, my favorite local actor Dieter Bierbrauer (Violet, Parade, and Floyd Collins with Theater Latte Da; Oklahoma and West Side Story at the Chan) is performing in the off-Broadway musical Power Balladz.  The show was created by local artists Mike Todaro, Dan Nycklemoe, and Peter Rothstein (Artistic Director of Theater Latte Da) and was performed at the Lab Theater in Minneapolis last summer.  Dieter is the only member of the three-person cast that made the move to NYC.  Unfortunately I missed it while it was here so I was hoping to see it in NYC, and actually had tickets for the Sunday night show.  But they cancelled Sunday night performances so I wasn't able to see it.  Maybe next time!

I wish all three of these Minnesota actors much luck and success in the Big Apple, but I hope that they continue to return home to the "Minnie Apple" and grace us with their talent!