"Is there a doctor in the house," lead producer Tristan Baker asked during a pre-show announcement at the May 13 performance of Broadway's Girl From the North Country. He then answered his own question, telling the audience that ER star Anthony Edwards would be stepping into the role of Dr. Walker for the evening.
Due to several company members out of the show with COVID-19, Girl From the North Country was faced with canceling performances, but playwright-director Conor McPherson wondered if Edwards might be able to step in, script in hand. It wasn't a completely out-of-left-field suggestion, as Edwards is not only an award-winning actor, but is also a fan of the show—and its Tony-nominated lead actress, his wife Mare Winningham.
The couple recorded a backstage video after the performance, explaining how everything fell into place. Check it out below.
Edwards was an original cast member on the long-running NBC medical drama ER, and made his Broadway debut in the 2018 revival of Children of a Lesser God. His other screen credits include Top Gun, Revenge of the Nerds, and the recent Netflix hit series Inventing Anna. He first worked with Winningham in the 1988 thriller film Miracle Mile, beginning the 35-year friendship that would lead to their 2021 elopement.
Featuring music from the Bob Dylan catalogue, Girl From the North Country, playing through June 19 at the Belasco Theatre, offers a slice-of-life look at a small community in Duluth, Minnesota, where the Laine family operates a rundown guesthouse.
The current Broadway cast includes Todd Almond, Colin Bates, Tony nominee Jeannette Bayardelle, Craig Bierko, Jennifer Blood, Matthew Frederick Harris, Caitlin Houlahan, Robert Joy, Luba Mason, Ben Mayne, Matt McGrath, Tom Nelis, Jay O. Sanders, John Schiappa, Austin Scott, Housso Semon, Kimber Elayne Sprawl, Rachel Stern, Ben Toomer, Chiara Trentalange, Bob Walton, Aidan Wharton, Chelsea Lee Williams, and Tony and Oscar nominee and two-time Emmy winner Winningham.
Edwards will appear throughout the weekend in the role of Dr. Walker, normally played by Robert Joy.