Playbill Vault's Today in Theatre History: June 24

Playbill Vault   Playbill Vault's Today in Theatre History: June 24
 
In 1998, Aasif Mandvi premieres his Obie-winning monologue play Sakina's Restaurant at the American Place Theatre.
Aasif Mandvi
Aasif Mandvi Lisa Berg

1942 Gypsy Rose Lee and Bobby Clark are featured in Michael Todd's musical revue, Star and Garter, which opens a 609-performance run at the Music Box Theatre.

1942 Birthday of actor Michele Lee. Lee's performances include Tony-nominated turns in Seesaw and The Tale of the Allergist's Wife, Rosemary in the Broadway and film versions of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, and Karen Fairgate in the long-running television drama Knots Landing.

1948 One of the earliest ice-skating revues, Howdy, Mr. Ice, opens a 406-performance run at Broadway's Center Theatre.

1976 Paul Rudd stars as Henry and Meryl Streep as Katharine in the New York Shakespeare Festival's Shakespeare in the Park mounting of Henry V. Among the costars are Michael Moriarty (as Chorus), Jay O. Sanders, Stephen Lang, Philip Bosco (as Pistol), Gerry Bamman, and Lenny Baker.

1979 Circle Repertory Company's production of Gertrude Stein Gertrude Stein Gertrude Stein, a monologue play by Marty Martin, opens at Circle Theatre starring Pat Carroll.

1981 Roundabout Theatre Company's revival of Shelagh Delaney's A Taste of Honey opens at the Century Theatre for a run of 157 performances. The production stars Amanda Plummer, in her Broadway debut, as a working-class English teenager who becomes pregnant by a black sailor.

1992 Al Pacino and Charles Cioffi star in Chinese Coffee at the Circle in the Square Theatre. Arvin Brown directs the Ira Lewis play about a failed writer who uses his almost equally disappointed photographer friend as the inspiration for his latest novel. To help the struggling Circle in the Square, Pacino and the creatives agree to work for union scale, and free tickets are not given to Tony voters.

1997 Off-Broadway gets a taste of the Grand Ole Opry when the musical biography Always...Patsy Cline opens at the Variety Arts Theatre. Ted Swindley directs the musical, which he wrote about the country & western star who died in a plane crash in 1963. Tori Lynn Palazolla and Margo Martindale star.

1998 Aasif Mandvi's monologue play Sakina's Restaurant opens at the American Place Theatre. The run, which continued through January 3, 1999, earned The Daily Show correspondent Mandvi an Obie Award, along with its director Kim Hughes. The play would return for a New York run, produced by Audible, in 2018.

1999 Shear Madness, the longest-running show in the history of Washington, D.C.'s Kennedy Center, celebrates its 5,000th performance. The improvisational murder-mystery opened for a 12-week run August 12, 1987 and has been playing ever since.

2007 The Civilians' production of Gone Missing returns for a run at the Barrow Street Theatre. Originally seen at the Belt Theater in 2003, the show, a documentary song cycle about loss, was created by the company using its signature interview style. Gone Missing features a book by Steven Cosson and a score by Michael Friedman; the show was revived at New York City Center in 2018 as part of its Encores! Off-Center season, a year after Friedman's passing.

2013 Jonathan Tolins' comedy Buyer & Cellar, starring Michael Urie as a struggling Los Angeles actor who finds himself working in Barbra Streisand's basement, opens at the Barrow Street Theatre. Originally announced as a limited 10-week engagement, it runs for over a year.

2017 Felix Rojas' Growing Up Gonzalez opens at the Actors Temple Theatre Off-Broadway. Andres ("Chulisi") Rodriguez starred as the title character in the monologue play about brotherly love and the power of saying goodbye.

More of Today's Birthdays Ira Hards (1872–1938); Norma Langworthy (1919–2012); Michele Lee (b. 1942); Anna Louizos (b. 1957); Iain Glen (b. 1961).

Watch Michele Lee preview her 2014 cabaret engagement at 54 Below:

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