This Week on Broadway for January 26, 2020: A Soldier’s Play

Jena Tesse Fox, James Marino, and Michael Portantiere talk about Robbie Rozelle’s upcoming final (for now) show at 54 Below, Happy Birthday Celia Keenan Bolger, and Margo Lion passing away. Reviews include A Soldier’s Play, Romeo & Bernadette, The Woman in Black, and My Name is Lucy Barton. We also discuss James Taylor’s upcoming album, which include some Broadway standards.


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Peter Filichia | [email protected] | Facebook
PETER FILICHIA is a playwright, journalist, and historian with a number of books. His columns appear at Masterworks BroadwayBroadway Select and many other places.

Jena Tesse Fox | [email protected] | Twitter
Jena is a theater writer and reviewer whose articles have appeared online at,, and She also has has her own podcast, Spotlight on the BroadwayRadio network.

James Marino | [email protected] | Twitter | Facebook

Michael Portantiere | [email protected] | Facebook
MICHAEL PORTANTIERE is a theater reviewer and essayist. He is also a theatrical photographer whose photos have appeared in The New York Times and other major publications. You can see his photography work at

Notes and links for the podcast.

Peter’s Trivia Answer


Robbie Rozelle / Tuesday’s at 54 Below

Celia Keenan Bolger’s birthday

Michael has a new doctor

Margo Lion, Producer of ‘Hairspray’ and More, Dies at 75 by Neil Genzlinger
In an era when big-budget theater was an increasingly corporate affair, Ms. Lion was a proudly independent producer.


Welcome to the Rock, an 8 part series of podcasts with interviews of the behind the scenes creation of the global hit musical, brought to you by our friends at Curtain Call in the UK. Binge the whole series at


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JF + MP: A Soldier’s Play @ Roundabout Theatre Company, American Airlines Theatre, through March 15, 2020

A Soldier’s Play at Roundabout Theatre Company (Todd Haimes, Artistic Director/CEO). This is first Broadway production of Charles Fuller’s award-winning drama, directed by Kenny Leon.

A Soldier’s Play stars David Alan Grier as “Sergeant Vernon C. Waters” and Blair Underwood as “Captain Richard Davenport.” The cast also includes Nnamdi Asomugha as “Private First Class Melvin Peterson,” Jerry O’Connell as “Captain Charles Taylor,” McKinley Belcher III as “Private Louis Henson,” Rob Demery as “Corporal Bernard Cobb,” Jared Grimes as “Private Tony Smalls,” Billy Eugene Jones as “Private James Wilkie,” Nate Mann as “Lieutenant Byrd,” Warner Miller as “Corporal Ellis,” J. Alphonse Nicholson as “Private C. J. Memphis” and Lee Aaron Rosen as “Captain Wilcox.”

A Louisiana Army base. A sergeant is murdered—and the crime, with its masterfully unfolded investigation, triggers a gripping barrage of questions about sacrifice, service, and identity in America. A hair-raising drama that reverberates with the “authentic and exciting pulse” (Ben Brantley, The New York Times) of mystery, Charles Fuller’s Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece rockets onto Broadway for the first time, starring three-time Tony nominee David Alan Grier and two-time Golden Globe nominee Blair Underwood and directed by Tony Award winner Kenny Leon (A Raisin in the Sun).

MP: Romeo and Bernadette @ the Mezzanine Theatre at A.R.T./New York Theatres 502 West 53rd Street through February 16, 2020.

Amas Musical Theatre (Donna Trinkoff, Artistic Producer) in association with Eric Krebs presents the Off-Broadway premiere of Romeo & Bernadette: A Musical Tale of Verona and Brooklyn, with book and lyrics by Mark Saltzman, music adapted from classic Italian melodies, and directed and choreographed by Justin Ross Cohen.

Romeo—yes, THAT Romeo—finds himself in 1960 Brooklyn, chasing a girl he believes is his beloved Juliet. But no, it’s Bernadette, the beautiful, foul-mouthed daughter of a crime family in this wild spoof of Shakespeare’s timeless tale.

The cast for Romeo & Bernadette is: Nikita Burshteyn (Newsies), Anna Kostakis (NY debut), Carlos Lopez (Man of La Mancha), Michael Marotta (Tenderly: The Rosemary Clooney Musical), Judy McLane (Mamma Mia), Michael Notardonato (NY debut), Ari Raskin (NY debut), Troy Valjean Rucker (August Rush – Upcoming B’wy), Zach Schanne (Pippin), and Viet Vo (Viet Gone_).

The creative team is Walt Spangler (Scenic Design), Fabio Toblini and Joseph Schrope (Costume Design), Ken Billington (Lighting Design), One Dream Sound (Sound Design), Aaron Gandy (Music Director), Steve Orich (Musical Supervision/Arrangements/Orchestrations), Kathryn Ann Wright (Associate Choreographer). Christine Viega is the Production Stage Manager. Casting is by Carol Hanzel Casting, CSA.

JF: The Woman in Black @ McKittrick Hotel, 530 West 27th Street, through March 8, 2020

MP: My Name is Lucy Barton @ Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, 261 West 47th Street, through February 29, 2020

Award-winning actress Laura Linney returns to Broadway in the American premiere of a haunting new solo play adapted by Rona Munro from the bestselling novel by Pulitzer Prize winner Elizabeth Strout. A sold-out sensation originally produced by the London Theatre Company at the Bridge Theatre in London, Ms. Linney was hailed as “luminous” by the The New York Times, “genuinely phenomenal” by Time Out London, and the play was called “deeply affecting and heartbreaking” by The Guardian.

Linney plays Lucy Barton, a woman who wakes after an operation to find – much to her surprise – her mother at the foot of her bed. They haven’t seen each other in years. During their days-long visit, Lucy tries to understand her past, works to come to terms with her family, and begins to find herself as a writer. This spellbinding story is directed by five-time Olivier Award winner Richard Eyre “with a keen-eyed compassion.” – The New York Times.

By Elizabeth Strout
Adapted by Rona Munro
Directed by Richard Eyre

Starring Laura Linney

Scenic & Costume Design by Bob Crowley
Lighting Design by Peter Mumford
Sound Design by John Leonard
Video Design by Luke Halls


Film and Television:



Post Script:

Michael’s Music Moment:

James Taylor: American Standard


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Explicit: No


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