Playbill Vault's Today in Theatre History: August 8 | Playbill

Playbill Vault Playbill Vault's Today in Theatre History: August 8 In 1975, Liza Minnelli joins the Broadway cast of Chicago as Roxie Hart.
Liza Minnelli as Roxie Hart in Chicago. Martha Swope / The New York Public Library

1975 Liza Minnelli to the rescue! With only six days to learn the role of merry murderess Roxie Hart, the Academy Award-winning stage and film star agrees to fill in for an ailing Gwen Verdon in Chicago. Minnelli stays with the show until mid-September. Always willing to do a friend a favor, Minnelli makes a highly-publicized return to the stage in 1997 as she fills in for a vacationing Julie Andrews in the musical Victor/Victoria.

1989 Shenandoah returns to Broadway for a revival run that proves to be brief. Starring John Cullum as Charlie Anderson, the production of the Civil War-era musical closes September 2 after approximately four weeks of performances.

1998 After arguing for 600 performances about a white-on-white painting, the three characters in Yasmina Reza's Tony Award-winning play, Art end their run at Broadway's Royale Theatre. The comedy, translated from French by Christopher Hampton, begins its national tour September 14 starring Judd Hirsch, who also appeared in the play on Broadway and in London. During the Broadway run, various trios of stars played the roles of three friends that Alan Alda, Victor Garber, and Alfred Molina originated.

2002 Edie Falco and Stanley Tucci open on Broadway in Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune at the Belasco Theatre. This marks the Broadway debut for Terrence McNally's romance, which played Off-Broadway's Manhattan Theatre Club in 1987. The production is much in the press due to the presence of screen actors Falco and Tucci and their onstage nudity throughout the opening scene.

2004 Actor Todd Cerveris stars opposite his brother, Tony winner Michael Cerveris, in The Booth Variations, playing the actor brothers Edwin Booth and John Wilkes Booth.

2013 Zachary Levi goes on his First Date with Krysta Rodriguez as Austin Winsberg, Alan Zachary, and Michael Weiner's musical opens on Broadway at the Longacre Theatre. The show about a tightly wound guy who is set up with a serial-dating cool girl, runs for 174 performances.

Today's Birthdays: Esme Percy (1887-1957). Sylvia Sidney (1910-1999). Dustin Hoffman (b. 1937). Connie Stevens (b. 1938). Marcia Lewis (1938-2010). Keith Carradine (b. 1949). Jennifer Simard (b. 1970). Michael Urie (b. 1980). Ryann Redmond (b. 1987).

Look Back at First Date on Broadway

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