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‘Life in the Theatre’ full of surprises

Early curtain catches some guests unawares

Producer Jeffrey Richards is a fan of the early curtain. He’s said so in these pages, and his three fall productions, “Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson,” “The Merchant of Venice” and “A Life in the Theatre” — offer theatergoers multiple early curtains to choose from.

The first of these to open, the revival of David Mamet’s “Life in the Theatre” starring Patrick Stewart and T.R. Knight, bowed Tuesday — the day that sees most Main Stem productions, including “Life,” begin perfs at 7 p.m.

So what time was the opening-night curtain for “Life in the Theatre” at the Schoenfeld? Uh, 8 p.m.

Most of the aud knew to show up later than usual, with the opening attracting an actor-centric crowd that included Uma Thurman, Kate Walsh, Taye Diggs, Alan Cumming and F. Murray Abraham.

But some folks, who maybe have gotten a little too accustomed to the earlier curtain, showed up at 7.

Veteran legit agent William Craver was among the early birds. “Jeffrey always likes to keep us on our toes,” he said.

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