many stars first found fame on the Broadway stage, other stars found success
first in the movies, and later tried their hand at Broadway musicals.
After Glenn Close moved to the Broadway production, she was replaced by none other than actress Faye Dunaway, star of "Bonnie & Clyde" (1967) and "Network" (1976). Ms. Dunaway had to beat out such other Hollywood contenders as Raquel Welch and Diana Ross for the role. Yet, just as Faye Dunaway was about to open as Norma Desmond, the producers decided that she didn't have the vocal range to handle the role and abruptly canceled the show.
Before "Sunset Blvd," the Shubert was home to such major, classic musicals as "Annie," "A Chorus Line," "Cats" and "Les Miserables," each enjoying a healthy run of several years here in Century City. And actor Leonard Nimoy ("Mr. Spock " from TV's "Star Trek"), was on also stage here years ago as "Sherlock Holmes."
Other 2001 shows at the Shubert includes "Dame Edna: The Royal Tour" in mid-May, the stage version of "Saturday Night Fever" in late May, and the current revival of "Kiss Me, Kate" in September.
The Shubert is one of L.A.'s finest legitimate theatres, and along with the Music Center, it is the local home to most of the major Broadway musicals visiting the city. It's a large theatre, with some 1,830 seats, and some people complain that the views in the rear balcony are poor.
Alas, the price for Broadway musicals has continued to rise; orchestra seats go for around $70 nowadays. Still, there is almost always a line of cars at the valet stand outside the Shubert when there's a musical playing there. And the wait to get tickets to a popular show can be long if you don't buy them before the show opens
The Shubert is located in the ABC Entertainment Center in Century City, near 20th Century Fox Studios. You will instantly recognize the ABC Entertainment Center by the twin 44-story, triangular office towers ("The Century Plaza Towers") which stand guard behind the theatre, and by the dramatic fountains in the center of the Avenue of the Stars. (You have seen it all before in the TV series "Remington Steele," where the towers served as the headquarters for the fictional detective's office.). The twin skyscrapers are the two tallest buildings in West L.A., visible from miles away, and a focal point for Century City.
(Also see the separate webpage about theatrical premieres.)
Getting there: From Rodeo Drive, take Santa Monica Boulevard southwest (about one mile) to Avenue of the Stars. Turn left (south) on Avenue of the Stars, and drive south until you reach the fountains. The Shubert will be on your left (east) side, across the street from the Century Plaza Hotel.
[For more information on this
subject, you can access seating charts of the Shubert at: http://www.playbill.com/cgi-bin/plb/seating?cmd=show&code=R183
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