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Behind the Curtain: 'The Trip to Bountiful' extends through the summer, more

From left, Vanessa Williams, Cicely Tyson and Cuba

From left, Vanessa Williams, Cicely Tyson and Cuba Gooding Jr. in "The Trip to Bountiful" Credit: From left, Vanessa Williams, Cicely Tyson and Cuba Gooding Jr. in "The Trip to Bountiful"

While “Orphans” and “The Testament of Mary” have posted early closing notices, the producers of the revival of Horton Foote’s “The Trip to Bountiful” announced Wednesday that the production will extend through Sept. 1. Star Cicely Tyson scored rave reviews for her performance.

With ‘Orphans’ closing early, Alec targets critic
The Broadway staging of the drama “Orphans” was originally scheduled to run through the end of June, but will instead close on May 19 due to lagging ticket sales. Right after the announcement, its star Alec Baldwin penned an angry Huffington Post article in which he criticized New York Times theater critic Ben Brantley, who gave “Orphans” an unfavorable review, describing him as a “shriveled, bitter Dickensian clerk.”

NPH to host Tonys for fourth time
Despite initial speculation that one of the many film stars currently appearing on Broadway might host the Tony Awards, it was confirmed Thursday morning that Neil Patrick Harris will return as host, making this his fourth time. In a statement, he assured everyone that “the show will rock.”

Close, Short, Idle to join Kline for ‘Pirates’
Last week we reported that Kevin Kline will return to play the Pirate King in the Shakespeare in the Park production of “The Pirates of Penzance” for the Public Theater’s June 10 concert of the musical in Central Park. The Public confirmed that Kline will be joined by Glenn Close, Martin Short and Eric Idle.

Another Beatles tribute show to hit Broadway
“Let It Be,” yet another Beatles tribute concert, will play Broadway’s St. James Theatre this summer starting July 16. The show, which opened in London in the fall, is apparently different from “Rain,” which ran on Broadway two and a half years ago.

Spotted …
F. Murray Abraham at “Old-Fashioned Prostitutes” ... David Letterman, Steve Martin, Julianne Moore, John Krasinski and Emily Blunt at “Lucky Guy.”

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