BWW TV: Chatting with the Cast and Creators of Off-Broadway's SHEAR MADNESS!
The open-ended Off-Broadway engagement of Shear Madness will begin performances October 22nd at New World Stages/Stage 4 (340 West 50th Street). Opening Night is set for November 11th. Bruce Jordan directs a cast that features Adam Gerber, Jeremy Kushnier, Kate Middleton, Patrick Noonan, Jonathan Spivey, and Lynne Wintersteller. BroadwayWorld's Richard Ridge caught up with the cast and creative team today - hear what they had to say below! Plus click here for photos from today's meet & greet!
SHEAR MADNESS is America's hilarious whodunit where the audience gets to solve the crime. Set in a local hair salon that turns into a wacky murder scene, the play is filled with up-to-the-minute humor and is different every time you see it!
It all began in the summer of 1976 while Bruce Jordan was working at a theatre in upstate New York. He came across a play entitled Scherenschnitt, which was written in 1963 by German writer and psychologist Paul Pörtner. The playwright had written the script to use as a study of how people perceive or misperceive reality. The brief play was set in a unisex hair salon and revolved around an off-stage murder of a concert pianist. Subjects were asked to solve the murder based on their individual perceptions of the events and the six stereotypical characters surrounding the murder. Bruce was intrigued by the concept and suggested that he and Marilyn Abrams stage the play in Lake George. Marilyn read Portner's original script, which she described as 'primitive' and says that if she hadn't known and trusted Bruce, she 'would have run for the hills'! She did trust him and they opened the newly titled Shear Madness in 1978 with nothing more than a basic outline of a script. Bruce and Marilyn performed the lead roles as well as helmed the production. Being on stage each night, Marilyn experienced the "magical" chemistry between the actors and the audience and was acutely aware of the audience's response to Shear Madness. Bruce and Marilyn immediately purchased the world stage, screen and television rights to the play.
Marilyn and Bruce always had New York City in mind: "Our initial plan was to open Shear Madness in New York after a Boston tryout, but the tryout was so successful that it didn't make any sense to close. We had received several New York offers but they just didn't seem right to us. With Boston and then Philadelphia running, we set our sights on Chicago, Washington, DC and San Francisco, and licensed successful productions across the United States and around the world. New York has always remained on our radar, and when the Shubert Organization bought New World Stages, we thought 'Let's go!' Now, after many offers, we've found the perfect team to bring Shear Madness to NYC. So, after 36 years of 'trying out' in Boston, 28 years of 'previews' at the Kennedy Center, 5 years in Philadelphia, 18 years in Chicago, and 5 years in San Francisco, we are prepared for the big time. New York has always been our destination, we just took a short detour."
Performances, which begin October 22nd, will be Monday at 7pm, Wednesday through Friday at 8pm, Saturday at 2pm & 8pm, and Sunday at 3pm and 7:30pm. Tickets from $49.50 are available online at Telecharge.com or by phone at 212-239-6200. For Group Sales (10 or more), call 888/517-0112 or 212/757-9117. The Box Office at New World Stages (340 West 50th Street) is open daily from 1pm.
For more information, visit ShearMadness.com.