The Tony nominations have claimed their first victim: New play “The Velocity of Autumn” posted a closing notice for Sunday, after the struggling show came up short on love from the Tony nomination committee.
The production, which opened April 21, came onto the scene during one of Broadway’s busiest weeks, and its lukewarm reviews couldn’t make it stand out alongside publicity-grabbing openings including “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” and “Cabaret.” Starring Estelle Parsons and Stephen Spinella, two-hander “Velocity” features thesps who are hugely respected among theater fans but not recognizable enough to turn heads with the slew of Hollywood names crowding the Broadway boards these days.
Parson earned an acting nom Tuesday morning, but Eric Coble’s script was left out of the five-title race for new play. Even if it had been included, however, it’s doubtful the show would have gotten enough of a sales boost to sustain it, following four weeks of downright dire box office beginning with $135,000 in its first frame and declining every week since.
Storyline of “Velocity” follows a senior citizen (Parsons) who threatens to blow up her Brooklyn brownstone if she isn’t allowed to continue living alone. Spinella plays the woman’s estranged son, enlisted to defuse the situation.
Production was helmed by Molly Smith, the a.d. of D.C.’s Arena Stage, where the production had its world premiere last year. Larry Kaye & HOP Theatricals, Van Dean & the Broadway Consortium, Joan Raffe & Jhett Tolentino, Catherine & Fred Adler, Michael J. Moritz Jr. and KIRN Prods., among others, produce.
“Velocity of Autumn” will close May 4 at the Booth Theater.