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Why didn’t Kelsey Grammar switch over and play Albin as originally promoted?

nativenewyorker2
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Alex Kulak2
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Was that a thing? That sounds kind of amazing.

nativenewyorker2
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https://www.playbill.com/article/kelsey-grammer-will-spend-six-months-as-georges-before-playing-albin-in-broadways-la-cage-com-166681
djoko84
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It could be because he had a lot going on at the time. If anyone watched the first season of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills he was seeing his current wife while doing the show in New York, while his wife at the time Camille was filming Real Housewives in California. They got divorced soon after. A lot to juggle in my opinion.

LightsOut90
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because he is a republican probably?

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I’m obsessed with scenarios where actors switch roles like Janet McTeer/Harriet Walter in MARY STUART. Jonny Lee Miller/Benedict Cumberbatch in FRANKENSTEIN and Laura Linney/Cynthia Nixon in THE LITTLE FOXES.
I know this situation is different but I would have loved to have seen him play the different roles. Would it be too strenuous for the actors to switch the roles at each performance like in the other examples I’ve listed?
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I’m obsessed with scenarios where actors switch roles like Janet McTeer/Harriet Walter in MARY STUART. Jonny Lee Miller/Benedict Cumberbatch in FRANKENSTEIN and Laura Linney/Cynthia Nixon in THE LITTLE FOXES.
I know this situation is different but I would have loved to have seen him play the different roles. Would it be too strenuous for the actors to switch the roles at each performance like in the other examples I’ve listed?
"Charlotte, we're Jewish"
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McTeer and Walter didn't alternate roles in Mary Stuart. At least not in New York.

The scenario varies actor to actor, show to show. Didn't John C. Reilly and Philip Seymour Hoffman flip a coin when they were doing True West? I know that's what Kristin Scott Thomas and Lia Williams did when they were doing Pinter's Old Times in London.

For The Little Foxes, there was a published schedule, but I'm not sure how faithfully it was adhered to. I bought tickets to a performance that was supposed to have Linney as Regina and Nixon as Birdie, but when I got to the theater, the arrangement was reversed. 

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I also wonder if Douglas Hodge being such a hit in the role of Albin and winning a Tony had anything to do with the swap not happening. Maybe they didn’t want to mess with a good thing. I also remember Harvey Fierstein saying one of the reasons he took over for Hodge was because they couldn’t find someone who wanted to follow him.
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NOWaWarning said: "I also wonder if Douglas Hodge being such a hit in the role of Albin and winning a Tony had anything to do with the swap not happening. Maybe they didn’t want to mess with a good thing. I also remember Harvey Fierstein saying one of the reasons he took over for Hodge was because they couldn’t find someone who wanted to follow him."

Yes, I remember Harvey saying in a 'Show People'interview that Hodge's reviews were so good that nobody wanted to be the first to replace him, but were willing to be his second replacement, so Harvey stepped in, saying something along the lines of "because after me, anybody would look good" LOL 

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Plannietink08 said: "I’m obsessed with scenarios where actors switch roles like Janet McTeer/Harriet Walter in MARY STUART.

 

As AC126748 said, McTeer and Walter didn’t switch roles. You’re thinking of the production with Lia Williams and Juliet Stevenson which played in London a few years ago. 

There was also a production of Dr. Faustus from the RSC the same season, in which the 2 actors playing Faustus and Mephistopheles would each light a match, and whoever had their match go out first would play Faustus. 
 

It’s definitely something of a gimmick, potentially a worn out one, depending on who you ask. And it’s always the same justification from the director: “it represents how similar the two characters are underneath!” But despite it all, I have to admit I really enjoy it too. 

 

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NOWaWarning said: "I also wonder if Douglas Hodge being such a hit in the role of Albin and winning a Tony had anything to do with the swap not happening. Maybe they didn’t want to mess with a good thing. I also remember Harvey Fierstein saying one of the reasons he took over for Hodge was because they couldn’t find someone who wanted to follow him."

That's actually not entirely true about Harvey. Jeffery Tambor was the first replacement for Douglas Hodge but was really struggling in rehearsals and felt very uncomfortable in the role, so withdrew shortly before he would begin performances. And since Harvey knew the role obviously and could get ready for it in a short period of time, he took over. 

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^Nope. Tambor was playing George’s, not Albin. Was thinking about this revival the other day and was wondering why it was so loved by many. I remember enjoying it at the time, but I forget I saw it honestly.
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Broadway61004 said: "NOWaWarning said: "I also wonder if Douglas Hodge being such a hit in the role of Albin and winning a Tony had anything to do with the swap not happening. Maybe they didn’t want to mess with a good thing. I also remember Harvey Fierstein saying one of the reasons he took over for Hodge was because they couldn’t find someone who wanted to follow him."


That's actually not entirely true about Harvey. Jeffery Tambor was the first replacement for Douglas Hodge but was really struggling in rehearsals and felt very uncomfortable in the role, so withdrew shortly before he would begin performances. And since Harvey knew the role obviously and could get ready for it in a short period of time, he took over.
"

 

Also, Tambor DID start performances before he withdrew. He joined the cast on a Tuesday, and his final performance was Thursday the following week. So he only about 12 performances, probably. 
 

https://www.playbill.com/article/jeffrey-tambor-withdraws-from-broadways-la-cage-aux-folles-com-176538

Updated On: 5/14/20 at 11:35 AM
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So it looks like Douglas and Kelsey played through an entire year together, could it be as simple that when Douglas won the Tony, they extended his contract an additional 6 months, they just played together through mid-February 2011, and Kelsey just wanted to move on? A year is a long time to be away for a TV actor. 

I'd be more interested to see if anyone saw Tambor as Georges for those 12 performances and saw if he was really struggling that much. 



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Grammar was stated once the run began that he knew he couldn't replace him. so he kept playing Georges for the remainder of his run.

In regards to replacements, Fierstein replaced Hodge as Albin. Tambor replaced Grammar but left after just 4 performances. Chris Hoch(u/s for Georges) played the role until March 9. Chris Sieber learned the role in one week and started on March 11 and played the role through closing(May 1).

A Chorus Line revival played its final Broadway performance on August 17, 2008. The tour played its final performance on August 21, 2011. A new non-equity tour started in October 2012 played its final performance on March 23, 2013. Another non-equity tour launched on January 20, 2018. The tour ended its US run in Kansas City and then toured throughout Japan August & September 2018.
Updated On: 5/14/20 at 11:59 AM
Damiensta
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I believe I remember Grammar saying that they didn’t switch Bc they reAlized it was too much to rehearse other part while performing the other part at same time.
The other examples were rehearse before starting performances.
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BroadwayNYC2 said: "^Nope. Tambor was playing George’s, not Albin. Was thinking about this revival the other day and was wondering why it was so loved by many. I remember enjoying it at the time, but I forget I saw it honestly."

Sorry, yes, you're absolutely right--don't know why I had it in my head he was supposed to be Albin.  Still was a really weird switchover (meaning the way the whole casting change after Year 1 of the run went).

Updated On: 5/14/20 at 12:11 PM
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I found it interesting Christopher Sieber played Georges on broadway, but ended up playing Albin on the tour. Did anyone see him play both and have a preference?
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I didn't see Sieber on Broadway as George, but I saw his Albin on tour in Boston. He was MAGNIFICENT. Possibly the most incredible version of I Am What I Am that I've ever seen live. Sieber is a great physical performer and was very comfortable in the role.

George Hamilton played George, and at his age doesn't move around too swiftly. When George gets up during Song on the Sand to reminisce and do a little dance, Sieber observed his painfully slow movements and cracked "yeah...that's sort of like dancing." It was hilarious.  Had Sieber originated the role on Bway I think he could have won the Tony too.

Updated On: 5/14/20 at 02:26 PM
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Sieber was awesome in both parts - as he was a little bit out of the mold. The age gap with Fierstein as Albin being older was fascinating and added to Albin's insecurities. He also played Georges with a lighter approach, which was nice. In general, I found the Sieber/Fierstein pairing to be the most HILARIOUS and loving one. Kelsey & Doug were great showmen, but I never for one minute believed either one of them was truly in love.

On tour, Sieber just ran away with the damn show. He was spectacular and it was a shame he couldn't have brought his Albin to NYC. Hamilton was alright, not performing so much as mugging. But Sieber managed to stay a little grounded to help balance that. I almost forgot how lucky I was to see him in both roles. I've always believe Sieber really needs a star vehicle and I'm still waiting...