rambling reporter

B'way curtains going up on 2 new musicals, Odets redo

Prevues begin tonight at the Circle in the Square on a new show I neglected to mention last week in talking about potential Tony nominees for best musical: the Eric Schaeffer-directed "Glory Days" from the Signature Theatre Company, with book by James Gardiner and music-lyrics by Nick Blaemire. It officially opens May 6, which squeaks it in for Tony consideration by one day. "Glory" will not, however, be vying for this season's awards from the Drama Desk, Outer Circles Circle and Drama League groups; they all have earlier cutoff dates for eligibility. … Meanwhile, the new "Cry-Baby, the Musical," based on John Waters' 1990 movie with Johnny Depp as the B.B.B.B. (Baddest Bad Boy in Baltimore), opens Thursday at the Marquis, directed by Mark Brokaw, following the show's premiere last year at the La Jolla Playhouse. This means that, in addition to two Stephen Sondheim creations in the Theatre District ("Gypsy," "Sunday in the Park With George"), we now also have two by Waters (the other being "Hairspray"). Sondheim and Waters are two names rarely found in the same sentence. … Another opening hits the big street Sunday: the revival of Clifford Odets' "The Country Girl," this version directed by Mike Nichols, with Oscar winners Morgan Freeman and Frances McDormand, along with Peter Gallagher, at the Jacobs. Back when that theater was known as the Royale, Gallagher starred there as one of the many Danny Zukos during the original run of "Grease." At the moment, in addition to "Grease" being back on the Broadway boards — this time at the Brooks Atkinson — there's more deja vu for Gallagher lurking: In 1992 he co-starred with Nathan Lane and Faith Prince in a much-Tonyed revival of "Guys and Dolls." Now, 16 years later, all three are simultaneously back in town and above the title, with Lane at the Ethel Barrymore in David Mamet's "November" and Prince at the Walter Kerr in "A Catered Affair." … Karen Akers returns to the famed Oak Room of the Algonquin Hotel for her ninth consecutive spring engagement May 13-June 14, this session with a show she's calling "Move On," encompassing some of the potent words of legendary Algonquin round-tabler Dorothy Parker and the music and lyrics from a wide range of music masters, including Cole Porter, Maury Yeston, Rodgers & Hart and Lieber & Stoller. … It's a sure sign that summer is looming when the venerable Cape Playhouse in Dennis, Mass., announces its upcoming agenda, and it just has. This year will be season No. 82 for the legendary house that once was owned and run by Gertrude Lawrence's husband, producer Richard Aldrich. Nearly every theater star (and many a celebrated and/or sinking movie name) has appeared on its stage at one time or another. This year the Cape will offer six main-stage productions, starting June 23 with "Mark Salem's Mind Games" and closing Sept. 13 after a run of Angelo Parra's "The Devil's Music: The Life and Blues of Bessie Smith" in its regional premiere engagement. The season also will include Garson Kanin's comedy "Born Yesterday," the Tony-winning "A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine" and the first regional theater production of the musicalized 2005 Broadway hit "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels," which will play there from July 21-Aug. 2.