As the new Broadway season starts picking up speed, all of the empty houses are steadily being filled by a variety of shows: musicals and plays, new shows and revivals, and even concerts and comedy. Take your pick (or picks) from this list of shows that are bringing new life to the Great White Way.
Scandalous: Broadway leading lady Carolee Carmello (Parade, Mamma Mia!) portrays Aimee Semple McPherson, the most famous person you’ve never heard of. In a story that could be ripped from today’s tabloids, this show chronicles her life as the first superstar evangelist and her controversial fall from grace.
Rebecca: Based on the novel by Daphne du Maurier and the Oscar-winning film by Alfred Hitchcock, Rebecca has already proven to be a smash hit in Europe. This tale of supernatural obsession is presented in a lavish and haunting musical starring Jill Paice (Curtains), Ryan Silverman (The Phantom of the Opera), and Karen Mason (Hairspray).
Chaplin: Following the rise to fame of one of our most cherished film icons, Charlie Chaplin, this nostalgic and emotional new musical is a time warp to the silent film era that featuring some of Broadway’s most exciting music, choreography, and one heck of a performance by break-out star Rob McClure.
The Mystery of Edwin Drood: Telling the story of Charles Dickens’ last great unfinished mystery novel, this musical solicits audience participation to decide how it should end. With an all-star cast featuring Stephanie J. Block (Anything Goes, 9 to 5) and Chita Rivera (Chicago, West Side Story), this whodunit is guaranteed to please.
Annie: One of Broadway’s most recognizable classics, Annie is the quintessential family musical. Featuring songs like “Tomorrow,” “Maybe,” and “It’s the Hard-Knock Life,” this revival brings the inspirational little red-head back onto the stage and into our hearts.
The Performers: One of the season’s more risque offerings, this new play explores the lives and relationships of people who just happen to be porn stars. Starring Cheyenne Jackson (Xanadu), Henry Winkler (Happy Days), and Alicia Silverstone (Clueless), it’s bound to be a good time.
The Anarchist: David Mamet is one of the most capable and controversial playwrights of our time, and this new play, starring Patti LuPone (Evita) and Debra Winger (Urban Cowboy), is no exception. Marvel at his gift for creating characters and manipulating language in this prison drama.
Dead Accounts: Starring Katie Holmes (Dawson’s Creek) and Norbert Leo Butz (Catch Me If You Can), this new play explores a family’s secrets when corporate greed clashes with small-town values. It also marks this season’s offering by prolific writer Theresa Rebeck (Seminar, TV’s Smash).
Grace: When a man and his wife begin to open a chain of gospel-themes motels, they run into much more than they bargained for with a series of questionable characters. Paul Rudd (Anchorman, Friends) stars in this hilarious new story.
Glengarry Glen Ross: One of David Mamet’s finest pieces, this play’s reputation precedes it. The new Broadway revival stars Al Pacino (Scarface) and Bobby Cannavale (The Mother****** with the Hat) in the classic real estate game with stakes that are almost too high to bear.
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?: One of the most studied and critically acclaimed dramas of our day, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? presents an intense look at a severely troubled relationship. The term “head games” doesn’t even begin to cover it.
The Heiress: Jessica Chastain (The Help) stars in the new revival of this play by Augustus Goetz. Based on Henry James’ Washington Square, it follows a young woman whose future is jeopardized by an opportunistic and selfish suitor. Moises Kaufman directs.
Cyrano de Bergerac: One of the most heartbreaking love stories in the literary canon, Cyrano tells the story of a love affair by proxy between the “nosy” hero and the beautiful Roxane. Tony winner Douglas Hodge (La Cage aux Folles) stars in the title role.
Golden Boy: Tony Shalhoub (Monk), Danny Burstein (Follies), and Seth Numrich (War Horse) star in this revival of a Clifford Odets classic about a talented violinist who, tempted by fame and fortune, becomes a professional boxer and faces the challenges of the Great Depression.
An Enemy of the People: Henrik Ibsen’s drama about a man’s crusade for truth against a town turned against him is brought to life once again in this revival starring Broadway regular Boyd Gaines (Driving Miss Daisy) and Richard Thomas (The Waltons).
AND THE REST
Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons on Broadway: They’re bringing their legendary songbook to Broadway for a limited engagement from October 19-27. Meanwhile, the smash hit musical Jersey Boys, about the band’s historic rise and fall, continues to play right down the street.
Lewis Black: Running on Empty: The cantankerous comedian brings his signature style to bear on the current political landscape and upcoming election. Playing October 9-20 at the Richard Rodgers Theatre.