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10 Celebrities to See on Broadway in 2018

Category Starring on Broadway

|by David Sheward |


The stars are lighting up Broadway

One of the pleasures of live theater is seeing your favorite stars from film and television perform right in front of you. This season, you can experience the talents of Tony, Oscar and Emmy winners such as Bernadette Peters, Denzel Washington, Glenda Jackson, Jim Parsons and Laurie Mertcalf and screen superheroes like Chris Evans and Andrew Garfield.

'Lobby Hero' starring Chris Evans, Bel Powley, Michael Cera, Brian Tyree Henry (Photo: Mark Seliqer)

'Lobby Hero' starring Chris Evans, Bel Powley, Michael Cera, Brian Tyree Henry (Photo: Mark Seliqer)

Chris Evans, Lobby Hero
Chris Evans is taking a perhaps permanent break from blazing across the screen as superhero Captain America in the Marvel Universe films in order to play a less-reputable law-enforcer in Kenneth Lonergan’s Lobby Hero. In his Broadway debut, Evans plays Bill, a bellicose, corrupt cop, abusing his position to take advantage of his rookie partner Dawn and to torment security guard Jeff – played by Michael Cera – who has a crush on Dawn.

Bernadette Peters, Hello, Dolly!
She’s been musical comedy royalty for decades. In her 14th Broadway musical, Bernadette Peters gives a whole new spin to the irrepressible matchmaker Dolly Levi in the sensational revival of Hello, Dolly! Carol Channing and Bette Midler have won Tonys for the role, but Bernadette brings her own unique brand of charm, pipes and pizzazz to the proceedings. She first burst on the scene as a naive chorus girl in the Off-Broadway smash Dames at Sea, then won Tonys for Song and Dance and Annie Get Your Gun, and brought life to Sondheim heroines in Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods, Gypsy, A Little Night Music and Follies. Now is your chance to catch her in the ultimate diva performance.

Glenda Jackson, Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women
She last appeared on the New York stage 30 years ago in Shakespeare’s Macbeth opposite Christopher Plummer. Now, after a career as a member of British Parliament, double Oscar winner Glenda Jackson (Women in Love, A Touch of Class) returns to the stage in Edward Albee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning rumination on life, love, aging and experience, Three Tall Women. She portrays A, the eldest version of a domineering social matron loosely based on Albee’s own formidable mother. As regal and imperious as Queen Elizabeth I (a role which won her an Emmy Award), Jackson makes A the ruler of her well-appointed roost, even though her 92-year-old body is failing her. She roars like a lion, not going gently into that good night.

Denzel Washington, The Iceman Cometh
In addition to his two Oscars (for Glory and Training Day), Denzel Washington has won a Tony for an intense performance in August Wilson’s Fences. He might be in the running again for another challenging role in an American classic – as Hickey, the glad-handing salesman selling salvation in Eugene O’Neill’s powerful drama The Iceman Cometh. In this new Broadway production directed by Tony winner George C. Wolfe, Washington takes on an iconic character previously tackled by the stellar likes of Jason Robards, James Earl Jones, Kevin Spacey, Lee Marvin and Nathan Lane.

Andrew Garfield, Angels in America
Like Chris Evans, Andrew Garfield first soared to fame as a Marvel superhero. He swung into the movie spotlight as Spider-Man, but this American-born, British-raised actor has a solid stage rep with impressive credits in New York and London. He was nominated for a Tony as the wayward son in the 2012 revival of Death of a Salesman and won the Olivier Award for his vibrant performance as Prior Walter, the reluctant gay prophet in the London staging of Angels in America, Tony Kushner’s massive, two-part epic on the AIDS crisis. He’s poised to collect another Tony nomination and possible win for the Broadway transfer at the Neil Simon.

Jim Parsons, The Boys in the Band
Once they strike it rich in a long-running TV sitcom, most stars do not return to their stage roots. Not so with Jim Parsons, who has won four Emmys and a Golden Globe Award for his hilarious portrayal of the socially challenged physicist Sheldon Cooper on CBS’s popular The Big Bang Theory. After headlining Broadway revivals of The Normal Heart and Harvey, Parsons will spend his summer vacation as part of an all-star ensemble in the Broadway debut of Mart Crowley’s landmark The Boys in the Band, the riotously funny and wrenchingly dramatic play about a group of gay men gathered for a birthday party. Secrets and shames are shared as they play a series of nasty games.

Renee Fleming, Carousel
One of the world’s leading opera stars, Renee Fleming makes the transition to the musical stage in the new revival of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s beloved classic Carousel. As Nettie Fowler, the spirited and strong-willed New Englander, she leads the cast in the robust celebration of summer, “June Is Bustin’ Out All Over,” and delivers an inspired rendition of the anthem of hope, “You’ll Never Walk Alone.”

Laurie Metcalf, Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women
America knows her for her Emmy-winning performance as Jackie, the caustic, sometimes confused sister of the title domestic goddess Roseanne, now enjoying an incredibly popular revival on ABC. Broadway audiences know her for her varied and dazzling performances on stage. Last season, she won a Tony Award as the defiant and desperate Nora in Lucas Hnath’s clever sequel to Ibsen’s classic A Doll’s House, Part 2. Previously she was nominated for November, The Other Place and Misery. Now she is starring opposite Glenda Jackson and Alison Pill in Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women as B, one of three versions of the same domineering matriarch not unlike the author’s mother.

Katharine McPhee, Waitress
After wowing TV audiences as a runner-up on the fifth season of American Idol, Katharine McPhee stars as an aspiring musical-theater singer on the NBC-TV series Smash. Like her character on that show, she’s making her Broadway debut in Waitress. She’ll be playing the lead role of Jenna, the struggling food-server who plans to enter a pie-baking contest to escape her oppressive marriage.

Armie Hammer, Straight White Men
The dazzlingly handsome Armie Hammer has enchanted film audiences as both of the Winklevoss twins in The Social Network, the Lone Ranger opposite Johnny Depp as Tonto, and as the besotted, bisexual graduate student in Call Me By Your Name. He’ll make his Broadway debut as one of three brothers visiting their father in Straight White Men by Obie-winning playwright Young Jean Lee.

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