Broadway revival to star Hayes, Chenoweth
Producers of the Rialto revival of “Promises, Promises” have vowed to open the show in April at the Broadway Theater. The production, toplined by Sean Hayes and Kristin Chenoweth, will be helmed and choreographed by Rob Ashford.Tuner is produced by Broadway Across America and familiar Hollywood names Craig Zadan, Neil Meron, Candy Spelling (in her Main Stem producing debut) and the Weinstein Co. Hayes, who starred in the 2008 Encores! production of “Damn Yankees,” has been associated with the project since at least a year ago, when he appeared in a workshop of the revival with Anne Hathaway. Chenoweth (“Wicked”) returns to the Rialto after picking up an Emmy last month for her role in now-defunct ABC skein “Pushing Daisies.” As choreographer of the most recent Academy Awards ceremony, Ashford also just nabbed an Emmy. A Broadway vet for choreography (“Thoroughly Modern Millie,” “Curtains”), he has been gaining a rep as a director across the Pond with two London hits, “A Streetcar Named Desire” and “Parade,” the latter of which Ashford has restaged in a Center Theater Group running on the boards in Los Angeles. Based on Billy Wilder’s 1960 pic “The Apartment,” the 1968 musical has a score by composer Burt Bacharach and lyricist Hal David that includes familiar tunes “I’ll Never Fall in Love Again” and “Knowing When to Leave.” Neil Simon, whose play “Brighton Beach Memoirs” is playing on the Rialto in half of a double bill that will eventually include “Broadway Bound,” penned the book. Plot centers on Chuck (Hayes), who regularly lends his apartment to execs in his company who need a place for adulterous trysts with their mistresses. Chenoweth plays one of the mistresses, whom Chuck loves. Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacLaine played the leads in the movie, with Jerry Orbach and Jill O’Hara stepping into the roles for the Broadway preem. Tuner has not been seen on the Rialto since its 1968 bow, which ran a bit more than three years and won two Tonys. A 1997 Encores! production starred Christine Baranski and Martin Short. The new production of “Promises” kicks off previews March 28 ahead of an April 25 opening at the Broadway, to be vacated by “Shrek the Musical” when that tuner shutters Jan. 3.