www.timesleader.com News Sports Weather Obituaries Features Business People Opinion Video Contact Us Classifieds

Aging gracefully -- and duly honored for it

Penny Fuller, left, Hallie Foote and Elizabeth Ashley, right, in a scene from ’Dividing the Estate’ which will open on Broadway in November. Hallie Foote has just won the 2008 Richard Seff Award, given each year to veteran character actors.

AP photo

NEW YORK — Hallie Foote and David Rasche are this year’s recipients of the Richard Seff Award, a theater prize that celebrates older character actors, those performers often unheralded for their stage work.

Administered by the Actors’ Equity Association, the awards — $1,000 and a crystal trophy — are given each year to actors 50 years of age or older and were established by Seff, an actor and veteran agent.

Foote, daughter of playwright Horton Foote, has long been a specialist of her father’s work, appearing in productions of many of his plays including “The Trip to Bountiful,” “The Carpetbagger’s Children” and “The Last of the Thorntons.”

She received the prize for her performance in her father’s “Dividing the Estate,” a family comedy about relatives attempting to come to terms with a sizable inheritance. It was seen last fall at off-Broadway’s Primary Stages. And audiences will get another chance to see her masterful performance when “Dividing the Estate” reopens Nov. 20 on Broadway. Preview performances for the Lincoln Center Theater production begin Oct. 13 at a theater to be announced.

Rasche received the Seff for his portrayal of Dr. Dorn in the Classic Stage Company’s revival of “The Seagull.”

Broadway ticket availability and capsule reviews of shows as of May 19 follow. Unless noted, tickets are available at the theaters’ box offices for the shows listed. Details about how to obtain tickets appear at the end.

A Catered Affair: Faith Prince, Tom Wopat and Harvey Fierstein star in a new musical by Fierstein and John Bucchino about the complications involved for the parents of the bride in planning their daughter’s wedding. Walter Kerr. Telecharge.

A Chorus Line: Michael Bennett’s classic musical about dancers auditioning for a big Broadway show is back. Gerald Schoenfeld. Telecharge.

August: Osage County: Tracy Letts’ drama, a hit for Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre Company, concerns a venomous mother and her dealings with three daughters. Winner of the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for drama. Music Box. Telecharge.

Avenue Q.: Love blossoms among the 20-something set — a group that includes puppets — in this very funny, adult musical comedy. Golden. Telecharge.

Boeing Boeing: Mark Rylance, Christine Baranski and Bradley Whitford star in the London hit about a man juggling affairs with several flight attendants. Longacre. Telecharge.

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof: James Earl Jones, Phylicia Rashad, Terrence Howard and Anika Noni Rose star in a revival of the Tennessee Williams’ classic. Broadhurst. Telecharge. Closes June 22.

Curtains: A murder-mystery musical comedy with a score by John Kander and Fred Ebb. David Hyde Pierce and Debra Monk star. Al Hirschfeld. Telecharge. Closes June 29.

Cry-Baby: 1950s Baltimore, a few years before “Hairspray,” and more teenage romance. A musical based on the John Waters film. Marquis. Ticketmaster.

Grease: A revival of the venerable musical celebrating 1950s high school and featuring stars chosen during the recent NBC television reality series. Brooks Atkinson. Ticketmaster.

Gypsy: Patti LuPone stars as the mother of stripper Gypsy Rose Lee in a revival of one of the greatest of all Broadway musicals. St. James. Telecharge.

Hairspray: The cult John Waters movie set in 1960s Baltimore has been turned into a hilarious, tuneful musical. Neil Simon. Ticketmaster.

In the Heights: The lively off-Broadway musical about Latino residents in an area of upper Manhattan called Washington Heights moves to Broadway. Richard Rodgers. Ticketmaster.

Jersey Boys: The musical story of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. Winner of four 2006 Tonys including best musical. August Wilson. Telecharge. Difficult.

Legally Blonde: Laura Bell Bundy stars in this musical version of the Reese Witherspoon movie about a determined young woman who goes to Harvard Law School. Palace. Ticketmaster.

Les Liaisons Dangereuses: A Roundabout Theatre Company revival of Christopher Hampton’s play about power and seduction in 18th-century France. Laura Linney and Ben Daniels star. American Airlines. 212-719-1300.

Macbeth: Patrick Stewart stars as the power-hungry monarch in the acclaimed Chichester Festival Theatre production of Shakespeare’s Scottish play. Lyceum. Telecharge. Closes May 24.

Mamma Mia!: The London musical sensation featuring the pop songs of ABBA. Die-hard ABBA fans will like it best. Winter Garden. Telecharge.

Mary Poppins: The world’s most famous nanny comes to the stage after her great success as a P.L. Travers book and a Disney movie. New Amsterdam. Ticketmaster, a special Disney hot line, 212-307-4747.

Monty Python’s Spamalot: A musical inspired by that demented film comedy, “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.” Shubert. Telecharge.

November: David Mamet’s new comedy about a president facing a tough re-election campaign. Nathan Lane stars as the chief executive and the cast also includes Laurie Metcalf and Dylan Baker. Lane will star in the show through July 13. Ethel Barrymore. Telecharge.

Passing Strange: A musical created by the singer-songwriter known as Stew. A hit off-Broadway last season, the show follows a young man’s journey from Los Angeles to Europe in search of truth and meaning. Belasco. Telecharge.

Rent: Jonathan Larson’s touching and now nostalgic look at struggling artists in New York’s East Village. Loosely based on Puccini’s opera “La Boheme.” Nederlander. Ticketmaster. Closes Sept. 7.

South Pacific: Kelli O’Hara is nurse Nellie Forbush and Paulo Szot is French plantation owner Emile de Becque in a revival of the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical based on one of the short stories in James A. Michener’s “Tales of the South Pacific.” Vivian Beaumont. Telecharge. Difficult.

Spring Awakening: A striking rock musical based on Frank Wedekind’s classic drama about a dozen young people discovering their sexual identities. Music by Duncan Sheik. Book and lyrics by Steven Sater. Winner of the 2007 Tony for best musical. Eugene O’Neill. Telecharge.

Sunday in the Park With George: A Roundabout Theatre Company revival of the Stephen Sondheim-James Lapine musical about French painter Georges Seurat and the creation of his masterpiece. Studio 54. 212-719-1300. Closes June 29.

The 39 Steps: A stage adaptation by Patrick Barlow of Alfred Hitchcock’s 1935 movie thriller about a man on the run. Four actors including Charles Edwards (who starred in the hit London production) portray 150-plus roles. Cort. Telecharge.

The Country Girl: Morgan Freeman, Frances McDormand and Peter Gallagher star in a revival of Clifford Odets’ play about a washed-up actor trying for a comeback. Mike Nichols directs. Bernard B. Jacobs. Telecharge.

The Lion King: Director Julie Taymor is a modern-day Merlin, creating a stage version of the Disney animated hit that makes you truly believe in the magic of theater. Minskoff. Ticketmaster, a special Disney hot line, 212-307-4747. Difficult on weekends.

The Little Mermaid: Disney’s stage version of its popular animated film about a sea maiden who longs to live on land. Lunt-Fontanne. Ticketmaster, a special Disney hot line, 212-307-4747.

The Phantom of the Opera: The one with the chandelier. The Andrew Lloyd Webber musical about a deformed composer who haunts the Paris Opera House is the prime, Grade A example of big Brit musical excess. But all the lavishness does have a purpose in Harold Prince’s intelligent production, now the longest-running show in Broadway history. Majestic. Telecharge.

Thurgood: Laurence Fishburne stars as Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall in a one-man show written by George Stevens Jr. Booth. Telecharge. —“Top Girls.” A Manhattan Theatre Club revival of Caryl Churchill’s play from the 1980s examines women, power and class. Biltmore. Telecharge.

Wicked: An ambitious, wildly popular musical about the witches in “The Wizard of Oz” as young women. Based on the novel by Gregory Maguire. Gershwin. Ticketmaster. Difficult.

Xanadu: A fast, funny roller-disco musical loosely adapted from the cult 1980s film. The cast features Kerry Butler, Cheyenne Jackson and Tony Roberts. Helen Hayes. Telecharge.

Young Frankenstein: Mel Brooks transfers his comedic monster mash of a movie from screen to stage — only with more song and dance. Hilton. Ticketmaster.

The Weekender Go Lackawanna Timesleader The Dallas Post Tunkhannock Times Impressions Media The Abington Journal Hazelton Times Five Mountain Times El Mensajero Pittston Sunday Dispatch Creative Circle Media Image Map