Playbill Vault's Today in Theatre History: August 1

Playbill Vault   Playbill Vault's Today in Theatre History: August 1
Cast of Bring It On Joan Marcus

1921 Opening night of the popular farce Getting Gertie's Garter about a man who gives a young woman a jeweled garter, then schemes to get it back before his fiance finds out.

1922 Stage veteran Arthur Hill is born in Canada. After appearing in several productions on the West End, Hill makes his Broadway debut in the 1955 production of The Matchmaker. He goes on to appear in the Broadway productions of Look Homeward, Angel, All the Way Home, and as George in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, winning a Tony Award for that performance.

1929 Michael Stewart is born. He writes the books for several classic musicals, including Bye Bye Birdie, Hello, Dolly!, and Mack & Mabel. Late in his career he takes up work as a lyricist on the Cy Coleman musicals I Love My Wife and Barnum.

1981 Paddy Chayefsky dies at age 58. Born in New York and starting as a writer for television dramas, Chayefsky pens such Broadway plays as Middle of the Night and The Tenth Man. Other notable Chayefsky works include the screenplays for the films Marty and Network.

1996 Joe DiPietro and Jimmy Roberts team up to bring I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change, to Off-Broadway’s Westside Theatre. The show that explores the entire spectrum of male-female relationships, from dating to in-laws, becomes Off-Broadway’s longest-running musical revue on January 7, 2001, breaking the record formerly held by Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris. It closes on July 27, 2008, after 5,003 performances.

1997 Scott Wise, a Tony winner for Jerome Robbins' Broadway, heads a cast that also includes Marla Schaffel and Patrick Wilson in Lucky in the Rain, opening at the Goodspeed Opera House. The show's music and lyrics are taken from the songbook of the late Jimmy McHugh and Harold Adamson. Sherman Yellen wrote the book for the musical about the romantic entanglements of two American journalists living in 1920s Paris.

2010 After a hiatus of several weeks, Tony-winning theatre favorites Bernadette Peters and Elaine Stritch reopen the acclaimed, Tony-nominated revival of Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler's A Little Night Music at the Walter Kerr Theatre. Peters and Stritch succeed Catherine Zeta-Jones and Angela Lansbury, respectively, in the roles of actor Desirée Armfeldt and her worldly-wise mother Madame Armfeldt.

2012 Bring It On: The Musical, the pop-fueled musical inspired by the popular film franchise about rival cheerleading teams, opens on Broadway at the St. James Theatre. The show has a book by Jeff Whitty, music by Tom Kitt and Lin-Manuel Miranda, and lyrics by Amanda Green and Lin-Manuel Miranda. Directed and choreographed by Andy Blankenbuehler, the production runs 171 performances and earns Tony nominations for Best Musical and choreography.

More of Today's Birthdays: Composer Jerome Moross 1913. Director/writer Julie Bovasso 1930. Composer Lionel Bart 1930. Choreographer/actor Geoffrey Holder 1930. Comedian Dom DeLuise 1933. Director Sam Mendes 1965.

Watch highlights from A Little Night Music, starring Bernadette Peters and Elaine Stritch:


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