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Superior Victoria Clark heading back to Broadway in Sister Act

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bob8rich
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Just read on Playbill that the awesome Victoria Clark will be the Mother Superior in Broadway's Sister Act - joining the previously announced Patina Miller. The rest of the principal cast is as follows:

Fred Applegate (Young Frankenstein) as Monsignor, Sarah Bolt (Wicked) as Sister Mary Patrick, John Treacy Egan (The Producers) as Joey, Demond Green (The Toxic Avenger) as TJ, Chester Gregory (Dreamgirls) as Eddie, Kingsley Leggs (The Color Purple) as Curtis, Marla Mindelle (South Pacific) as Sister Mary Robert, Audrie Neenan (Picnic) as Sister Mary Lazarus and Caesar Samayoa (The Pee-wee Herman Show) as Pablo.
THEATRE 2019: ASPECTS OF LOVE**** FRANKENSTEIN (Paris)**** AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE**** COMPANY***** [title of show]**** CAN CAN*** THE CEREAL CAFE**** BAD GIRLS**** RAGS***** LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE***** FOLLIES***** ROMANCE ROMANCE**** THE MARVELOUS WONDERETTES*** LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE***** QUEEN OF THE MIST**** SIX** THE PRICE***** MAGGIE MAY **** CALENDAR GIRLS** MAN OF LA MANCHA**** WAITRESS***** FANNY AND STELLA***
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Some terrific performers in this cast. Also with a revised book from Douglas Carter Beane and a proper director then we may well have a new show entirely...
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I am not knocking Victoria Clark, I haven't seen her act, but assume she is a very good actress, however I guess she will not be a box office puller, which you need, especially with all the competition with the other new shows to open in the Spring.

I am surprised the producers didn't go for Whoopi Goldburg again, or another big name to draw in the punters.

If Fred Applegate is playing the bishop, I think he will be excellent, I really enjoyed his performance in 'Young Frankenstein' and 'La Cage'

As much as I loved 'Sister Act' and against my prediction, I actually loved the show, so did most of this board. I actually think of all the shows to open this one will struggle.
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bob8rich
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I take your point, POL - and obviously Victoria does not have Whoopi's "superstar" popularity. But she is more widely known in the US than you might think. She's been in quite a lot of major TV shows and has been a major Broadway star for a long time, ever since she wowed everyone as Alice Beane in Titanic way back in 1997. And her performance in Light In The Piazza not only won her a Tony but she also won just about every major theatre award in 2005 for that role. So in some ways she will bring a wider audience to Sister Act - coming from fans of "serious" musical theatre who will revere her as much as I do.

And, not only is she a brilliant actress, she is also a fantastic singer - in a different class to Sheila Hancock or Whoopi. So I suspect that some of the changes for the Broadway production may be in the vocal role of the Mother Superior and that is what may have prompted them to cast a singer and not just an "actress" in the role.
THEATRE 2019: ASPECTS OF LOVE**** FRANKENSTEIN (Paris)**** AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE**** COMPANY***** [title of show]**** CAN CAN*** THE CEREAL CAFE**** BAD GIRLS**** RAGS***** LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE***** FOLLIES***** ROMANCE ROMANCE**** THE MARVELOUS WONDERETTES*** LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE***** QUEEN OF THE MIST**** SIX** THE PRICE***** MAGGIE MAY **** CALENDAR GIRLS** MAN OF LA MANCHA**** WAITRESS***** FANNY AND STELLA***
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Her presence will certainly bolster the reviews - she is a much loved and appreciated actress in New York. I actually think Sister Act will be a hit on Broadway.
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bob8rich, you over estimate Victoria Clark's level of fame. She is not all at widely known in the US and she has very few TV credits. She is known in the New York theater community, but not on the level of someone like Sutton Foster or Christine Ebersole or Donna Murphy (women who are not famous but can still sell a decent amount of tickets).

That said, she's insanely talented so I'm sure she'll be wonderful in Sister Act. I'm very interested to see her take on the role, especially since she's not in the Maggie Smith/Sheila Hancock mold.
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Just curious to know, what changes do people think need to be made to the book?
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I note that the characters formerly known as Bones and Dinero are now called Joey and Pablo. Can we glean anything from that?
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Superior Victoria Clark heading back to Broadway in Sister Act
'Sister Act- The Musical'

Broadway Theatre, New York.
Opening April 20th 2011
Previews from March 24th 2011.

Olivier Award nominee Patina Miller will reprise her critically acclaimed performance as 'Deloris Van Cartier,' which she originated in the West End production of Sister Act.

Victoria Clark, Mother Superior, received a Tony Award for her performance in Craig Lucas-Adam Guettel musical 'The Light in the Piazza' in 2005.
Most recently, Clark appeared in the off-Broadway production, 'Love, Loss and What I Wore,' as well as Lincoln Center’s production of 'When the Rain Stops Falling.'
Her many Broadway credits include 'Titanic,' 'How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying' with Matthew Broderick and Megan Mullally, Jerry Zaks’ Tony Award-winning revival of 'Guys and Dolls' with Faith Prince and Nathan Lane, 'Urinetown,' 'A Grand Night for Singing,' Sam Mendes’ revival of 'Cabaret,' and 'Sunday in the Park with George.'

The Broadway company will also feature Fred Applegate (Young Frankenstein) as 'Monsignor,' Sarah Bolt (Wicked) as 'Sister Mary Patrick,' John Treacy Egan (The Producers) as 'Joey,' Demond Green (The Toxic Avenger) as 'TJ,' Chester Gregory (Dreamgirls) as 'Eddie,' Kingsley Leggs (The Color Purple) as 'Curtis,' Marla Mindelle (South Pacific) as 'Sister Mary Robert,' Audrie Neenan (Picnic) as 'Sister Mary Lazarus' and Caesar Samayoa (The Pee-wee Herman Show) as 'Pablo.'

The ensemble of 'Sister Act' will also include: Jennifer Allen, Natalie Bradshaw, Charl Brown, Christina DeCicco, Holly Davis, Madeleine Doherty, Alan H. Green, Blake Hammond, Wendy James, Carrie A. Johnson, Kevin Ligon, Louise Madison, Marissa Perry, Ernie Pruneda, Corbin Reid, Lance Roberts, Rashidra Scott, Jennifer Simard, Lael Van Keuren, Roberta Wall and Alena Watters.

'Sister Act' is based on the 1992 film of the same name, and features music by Alan Menken ('Little Shop of Horrors,' 'Beauty and the Beast,' 'The Little Mermaid' and 'Enchanted'), lyrics by Glenn Slater (The Little Mermaid), book by Cheri and Bill Steinkellner (“Cheers”).

When disco diva Deloris Van Cartier witnesses a murder, she is put in protective custody in the one place the cops are sure she won't be found - a convent! Disguised as a nun she quickly finds fans amongst her fellow ‘sisters’ but makes the wrong impression on the convent’s strict Mother Superior. When she turns her attention to the convent’s off-key choir, helping the nuns to find their true voices and breathing new life into the rundown neighbourhood, her cover could be blown for good. With the gang giving chase, is time running out for Deloris? Or have they underestimated the power of her new found Sisterhood?

The Broadway production of 'Sister Act' will be directed by four-time Tony Award winner Jerry Zaks ('Guys and Dolls,' 'Six Degrees of Separation,' 'Lend Me a Tenor' - 1989 production, and 'The House of Blue Leaves'), with choreography by Anthony Van Laast ('Mamma Mia!' and 'Bombay Dreams'), and set design by Klara Zieglerova, costumes by Lez Brotherston, lighting by Natasha Katz and sound by Mick Potter. With the exception of Jerry Zaks, this is the same team that created the West End production - which was helmed by Peter Schneider.

The world premiere of 'Sister Act' played at the London Palladium from 7 May 2009 - 30 Oct 2010.
The show received generally good notices from the popular press:
The Evening Standard says, "It’s a wimple-wibbling, habit-forming triumph."
The Daily Mail says, "I hated its artistic laziness, its predictability, its incuriosity, its idea that disco is divine..."
The Daily Telegraph says, "Sister Act proves more enjoyable on stage than it did on film."
The Stage says, "Highly recommended."

The London production broke the record for the highest grossing single performance (December 2009) and highest weekly gross (August 2010) for any musical ever at the London Palladium.

Updated On: 2/4/11 at 12:33 PM