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Stars take center stage on Broadway

Lysistrata Jones

Lysistrata Jones Photo Credit: "Lysistrata Jones"

Even if there are shockingly few new musicals opening on Broadway this fall, there are plenty of star turns and some intriguing new plays.

‘Venus in Fur’
Previews start Nov. 8 at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre
Before Nina Arianda came to Broadway in “Born Yesterday” last season, she first gained attention when she starred in this unusual two-character play Off-Broadway more than a year ago. It begins as a comedy about a young actress auditioning for a new play and morphs into an erotic thriller.

‘Hugh Jackman, Back on Broadway’
Previews start Oct. 25 at the Broadhurst Theatre
Backed by an 18-piece orchestra, Hugh Jackman will perform some of his favorite tunes and share insights on his career and life. It ought to be better than his previous Broadway outings, which included the corny star vehicle “The Boy From Oz” and the forgettable cop drama “A Steady Rain.”

‘On a Clear Day You Can See Forever’
Previews start Nov. 12 at the St. James Theater
Harry Connick Jr., who won raves in “The Pajama Game,” returns in a revival of this rarely seen 1965 musical about a professor who becomes obsessed with a student gifted with extrasensory perception. Although the plot has been reworked, it still includes many beautiful songs including “What Did I Have That I Don’t Have.”

‘An Evening with Patti LuPone and Mandy Patinkin’
Previews start Nov. 16 at the Barrymore Theater
Patti and Mandy, who starred together more than 30 years ago in the original Broadway production of “Evita,” reunite in what promises to be an intimate and unusual concert. Get ready for a lot of Sondheim songs.

‘The Mountaintop’
Previews start Sept. 22 at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre
Samuel L. Jackson plays Martin Luther King Jr. in this new drama about the civil rights leader during his final hours, in between the “I’ve been to the mountaintop” speech and his assassination. Angela Bassett co-stars as a mysterious motel maid.

‘Godspell’
Previews start Oct. 13 at Circle in the Square
Stephen Schwartz’s hippie-happy retelling of New Testament stories was a hit in the ’70s. This show, which was originally slated to open three years ago, features a young cast that includes Hunter Parrish and Anna Maria Perez de Tangle.

‘Private Lives’
Previews start Nov. 6 at the Music Box Theatre
Kim Cattrall, who will always be remembered as Samantha Jones on “Sex and the City,” headlines a new production of Noël Coward’s timeless comedy about two rich divorcees who unexpectedly re-encounter each other while on honeymoon with their new spouses.

‘Lysistrata Jones’
Previews start Nov. 12 at the Walter Kerr Theater
This slam-dunk musical comedy, which played a short Off-Broadway run, combines the enthusiastic spirit of “High School Musical” with the wit of Greek comedy. A college cheerleader convinces her gal pals to refrain from sex with their boyfriends till the guys win at basketball.

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