One last matinee and it's the end of 'History'

One last matinee and it's the end of 'History'

NEW YORK -- Hail and farewell: This is, regretfully, the final week playgoers can catch the year's best play with the year's best ensemble cast. Following next Sunday's matinee, the multi-Tony'd "The History Boys" will be history itself as it wraps its super-successful run (having already gone into the profit zone, despite a limited engagement) at the Broadhurst. It should be a heady last performance: Immediately after, the boys, with no time for any let-down, will all be flying off to England (home!) to be front and center the following night, Oct. 2, at the Royal world premiere of the movie version of "The History Boys" in which they all appear. It'll be held in London's Leicester Square as a benefit for the youth charity called the Prince's Trust, inaugurated by Prince Charles, who'll be another main attraction at the screening. 20th Century Fox opens the film version in the U.K. on Oct. 13; it opens here in the States via Fox Searchlight on Nov. 22 . ... And the wheel moves on: New show openings in town this week include "Jay Johnson: The Two and Only" at the Helen Hayes, featuring ventroloquist Johnson (of TV's "Soap" fame) and his wooden pal, sort of a great-great grandson of Edger Bergen's tree-spawned sidekick Charle McCarthy. Johnson & company had a popular run of the show off Broadway at the Atlantic theatre two years ago. With his stand at the Helen Hayes, Johnson can put something on his resume sheet the great Mr. Bergen never could: Broadway star. Bergen starred in many movies, also on radio and television but he never did a B'way show. Almost, however. He and Charlie McCarthy were once cast in an edition of the famous "Ziegfeld Follies" at the New Amsterdam but were axed during previews, because the show was running too long . ... Thursday brings the return of Eric Bogosian's "SubUrbia," newly updated by Bogosian, this time pertformed at the Second Stage by Kieran Culkin, Gavy Hoffman, Peter Scanavino and Daniel Eric Gold. The director is Jo Bonney who's also Mrs. Bogosian. ... The same night, performances begin at Playwright's Horizons on Tanya Barfield's new play "Blue Door," directed by Leigh Silverman. ... Saturday, Tina Howe's new comedy "Birth and After Birth" begins an off-Broadway run at the Atlantic. ... But talk about endurance: Tonight Kitty Carlisle Hart, who's a mere 96, begins a five-night gig at one of the city's premiere clubs, Feinstein's at the Regency. It's a new, updated show for Miss Kitty, one she's calling "I Walk with Music" with new stories and songs, one of which will be an old one called "Alone," which she introduced back in 1935 in the Marx Bros. classic "A Night at the Opera." And if you haven't heard KCH sing recently, you'd be amazed at what a lovely voice she has and, of course with her background among the swells of New York and Hollywood for the past 70-plus years, she has a wealth of stories to share that no one today can match . . . Meanwhile, Elaine Stritch, who's a babe of only 81, continues to pack them into the Cafe Carlyle, where she'll be in residence, making waves, thru Nov. 11.
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