Broadway to-do's: 'Cyrano' and a Landmark night

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NEW YORK -- Tuesday night's the night that six more Manhattanites are inducted as Living Landmarks by the New York Landmarks Conservatory at a ceremony at Cipriani 42nd Street. The latest to join the fraternity "for preserving New York in their own legendary ways": Lauren Bacall, Oscar de la Renta, Jessye Norman, Mica Ertegun, Gerald Schoenfeld and John C. Whitehead. The hostess will be Liz Smith, herself declared a Living Landmark in 1996. ... Also this week: The latest revival of Edmond Rostand's 1897 "Cyrano de Bergerac," in an adaptation by Anthony ("A Clockwork Orange") Burgess, opens Thursday at the Richard Rodgers with Kevin Kline as the fellow with the longest nose this side of Pinocchio, Jennifer Garner as the beauty named Roxane who he pines for, and Daniel Sunjata as the dim-witted fellow she loves. (Sunjata was a 2003-04 Tony nominee for his sharp-edged performance as an outed gay baseball player in "Take Me Out.") Directed by David Leveaux, the "Cyrano" cast also includes Chris ("Dog Day Afternoon") Sarandon. ... On Sunday, another openin': Tom Stoppard's drama from London's Royal Court theater, "Rock 'n' Roll," has its U.S. premiere at the Jacobs (formerly the Royale), directed by Trevor Nunn and toplined by Brian Cox, Rufus Sewell and Sinead Cusack. ... Meanwhile, prevues begin that same Sunday at the Vivian Beaumont on Shakespeare's "Cymbeline," directed by Mark Lamos with a large cast that includes Michael Cerveris, most recently of the underrated "LoveMusik" and the much-Tonyed "Sweeney Todd" revival; also John Cullum, Martha Plimpton and Phylicia Rashad. ... The same day, the prevue process also begins on the return for the holiday season of "Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas: The Musical" at the St. James, where it'll play its limited year-end run through Jan. 6. Supervised by Jack O'Brien and directed by Matt August, the show was a boxoffice surprise in town last year, just as it's been a big audience-pleaser for the past nine years at San Diego's Old Globe, under O'Brien's nurturing. This "Grinch" looks to become an annual holiday destination for Big Apple visitors, along with watching the Rockettes kick up their heels at the Radio City Music Hall. "Grinch" takes over a slot filled for 10 years (1994-2003) by a musicalized "A Chistmas Carol," which showed up every year at Madison Square Garden's theater with a yearly change of Scrooges, among them Roger Daltrey, F. Murray Abraham, Tony Randall, Roddy McDowall, Hal Linden, Tony Roberts and Jim Dale. ... More prevues starting this week: Tonight, the Steppenwolf's production of Tracy Letts' new play "August: Osage County" at the Imperial, directed by Anna D. Shapiro; Wednesday, the National Theatre of Great Britain's "The Seafarer," a new play by Conor McPherson, who also directs; and finally, on Saturday, the latest Disney legit musical, "The Little Mermaid," will begin it's prevue process at the Lunt-Fontanne. Adapted from the 1989 animated feature, with a new book by Doug Wright, it's directed by Francesca Zambello and choreographed by Stephen Mear and brings the Disney-on-Broadway total back to three, along with "The Lion King" and "Mary Poppins." "Tarzan" is now long gone, having swung from his last Broadway vine in early July.
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