Blige hops aboard ‘Brooklyn’ tuner

Thrush to make B'way bow in urban fairy tale

First the Tonys; now “Brooklyn”?

Legit observers thought hip-hop diva Mary J. Blige was performing on foreign territory when she took to the stage of Radio City Music Hall to sing “What I Did for Love” from “A Chorus Line” at June 6’s Tony Awards. Now the boards are looking more like home turf.

Following the example of Hugh Jackman, who hosted last year’s Tonys before making his Broadway debut in “The Boy From Oz,” Blige is in talks to make her Broadway bow in “Brooklyn,” a new tuner by Mark Schoenfeld and Barri McPherson.

Described as an urban fairy tale set under the Brooklyn Bridge, musical is set to open Oct. 21 at the Plymouth Theater, with previews beginning Sept. 23.

Blige would be part of a five-member ensemble that would include Eden Espinoza, who finishes her two-week run in “Wicked” this week. Espinoza had been filling in for Tony winner Idina Menzel, who took a short hiatus to film “Ask the Dust” opposite Colin Farrell.

In “Brooklyn,” Blige is up for the role of Ms. Pairadice. Other roles have not been cast.

Jeff Calhoun (“Big River”) is the helmer of “Brooklyn,” which had its world preem in May 2003 at the New Denver Civic Theater.

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