Tony Award winner Angela Lansbury leaves her role as Mrs. Sue-Ellen Gamadge in the Tony-nominated Broadway revival of Gore Vidal's THE BEST MAN today, July 22, 2012. Fellow Tony winner Elizabeth Ashley takes over the part on Tuesday, July 24 at 7 p.m.
Lansbury's portrayal in THE BEST MAN won her Outer Critics Circle and Drama Desk nominations for best featured actress. Lansbury earned the first of her unprecedented four Tony Awards for Best Actress in a Musical playing the role of "Mame" for two years on Broadway. She received the others as the Madwoman of Chaillot in Dear World (1968), as Mama Rose in the 1974 revival of Gypsy and as Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd (1979).
Original cast members Candice Bergen, Eric McCormack and Kerry Butler also departed the production earlier this month, with Golden Globe Award winner Cybill Shepherd and Emmy Award nominees John Stamos and Kristin Davis beginning performances on July 10.
Original cast members James Earl Jones, John Larroquette, Jefferson Mays, as well as Mark Blum, who replaced the injured Michael McKean, will remain with the production through its final performance on Sunday, September 9, 2012.
Gore Vidal's THE BEST MAN also features Curtis Billings, Corey Brill, Tony Carlin, Donna Hanover, Sherman Howard, Olja Hrustic, Bill Kux, James Lecesne, Dakin Matthews, Angelica Page, Fred Parker, Jr. and Amy Tribbey.
Gore Vidal's THE BEST MAN received 2012 Tony Award nominations for Best Revival of a Play as well as a Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play nomination for James Earl Jones. The critically-acclaimed production of Gore Vidal's THE BEST MAN, which was originally scheduled to play through July 8, 2012, has been extended twice, now playing through Sunday, September 9, 2012 at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre (236 West 45th Street).
The production is directed by Drama Desk Award winner Michael Wilson (The Orphans Home Cycle Part I, II and III, Dividing The Estate). The design team includes Tony and Drama Desk Award winning scenic designer Derek McLane (33 Variations, Anything Goes), Tony and Drama Desk Award winning lighting designer Kenneth Posner (The Coast of Utopia, Part 2 – Shipwreck), five-time Tony Award nominated costume designer Ann Roth (The Book of Mormon), Drama Desk Award winning sound designer John Gromada (Seminar, The Orphans' Home Cycle) and projection designer Peter Nigrini (Fela!, 9 to 5: The Musical).
Gore Vidal's THE BEST MAN is produced by Jeffrey Richards, Jerry Frankel, INFINITY Stages, Universal Pictures Stage Productions, Barbara Manocherian/Michael Palitz, The Broadway Consortium/Ken Mahoney, Kathleen K. Johnson, Fifty Church Street Productions, Larry Hirschhorn/Bennu Productions, Patty Baker, Paul Boskind and Martian Entertainment, Wendy Federman, Mark S. Golub & David S. Golub, Cricket Hooper Jiranek, Stewart F. Lane & Bonnie Comley, Carl Moellenberg, Harold Thau, Will Trice.