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Audra McDonald, Michael Shannon to star in 'Frankie and Johnny'

Audra McDonald and Michael Shannon will star in

Audra McDonald and Michael Shannon will star in Terrence McNally's "Frankie and Johnny in the Claire de Lune." Photo Credit: Composite: Getty Images for Jazz At Lincoln Center / Michael Loccisano, left; AP / Invision / Evan Agostini

They could have just sent flowers. But a group of producers will celebrate four-time Tony Award winner Terrence McNally's 80th birthday in a far more dramatic way, with a 16-week Broadway run of his play "Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune" in May.

Six-time Tony winner Audra McDonald and two-time Academy Award nominee Michael Shannon will star in the sweet romance about a waitress and a short-order cook whose one-night stand turns into something deeper after he asks a radio DJ for "the most beautiful music in the world." 

The play originally ran Off-Broadway at the Manhattan Theatre Club in 1987, with Kathy Bates and F. Murray Abraham; Northport-raised Edie Falco and Stanley Tucci starred in the 2002 Broadway production.

The new production will open at a Shubert theater to be announced, with Arin Arbus making her Broadway directing debut.

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