NEW YORK – The revival of Neil Simon’s 1983 play “Brighton Beach Memoirs” has joined an illustrious list of productions that have dropped off the 2000-01 Broadway sked over the last few weeks. The others include “The Visit,” “Oklahoma!” and “Little Women.”
Emanuel Azenberg, producer of the Simon revival as well as the original Broadway production, confirmed that “Brighton Beach” would not make the current legit season.
Florida’s Coconut Grove Playhouse planned the Broadway-bound production for its winter 2001 calendar (Feb. 6-March 11) prior to a run in Gotham. Those plans remain in flux. “We are considering our options,” said a spokesperson for the theater company, where Arnold Mittelman is producing artistic director.
Coconut Grove hosted the 1997 revival of Simon’s “The Sunshine Boys” before that National Actors Theater production, with Tony Randall and Jack Klugman in the leads, moved to Broadway.
The “Brighton Beach Memoirs” revival had been originally paired with “Broadway Bound,” another of the playwright’s autobiographical works, with the two plays to be performed in repertory. Linda Lavin and then Zoe Wanamaker were mentioned to star, with either Jerry Zaks or Walter Bobbie directing.
The original cast of “Brighton Beach” included Peter Michael Goetz, Elizabeth Franz, Zeljko Ivanek and Matthew Broderick as 15-year-old Brooklynite Eugene Jerome.
Simon’s latest play, “The Dinner Party,” opens on Broadway at the Music Box Theater Oct. 19.