Nicely Busy

That young actress Patricia Conolly is back on Broadway, she gave her first performance as Mrs Debose yesterday in TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD with the new cast at the Shubert Theatre with Ed Harris now playing Atticus Finch. Tickets are available at mind-numbing Broadway rates.

I haven’t seen the show yet, but judging by the audience response as I heard the last few lines of the play from the stage door, it sounds as if the price of admission might be justified. Understand that I say this as one whose first theatre-going set me back about 30 pence (50 cents), not the mortgage it takes today.

Meanwhile, in another part of the forest, or as we say here in NYC, Off-Broadway, I am rehearsing LONDON ASSURANCE at The Irish Rep. I’m playing Sir Harcourt Courtly a character descended from a long line of fops. There’s a puff piece here where you’ll also see a picture of the wonderful Rachel Pickup playing the unforgettably-named, Lady Gay Spanker.

That’s Simon Russell Beale in the 2010 National Theatre production.

Sir Harcourt Courtly has been personated by such giants of the stage as Donald Sinden in the legendary 1970, West End and Broadway production, and Brian Bedford 1997, Broadway and Stratford Ontario 2006.

I worked with Brian Bedford twice. He was a master at light comedy. One time I backed him into a corner and asked him to tell me his secrets, “Brian!” I said, “How do you do it!?! I have to know!” Brian gave it a little thought in that slightly puzzled quizzical manner which was one of his comic modes and finally said, modestly, “Well I don’t really know.” He did know of course, but in common with others of unusual ability, he knew it wasn’t a thing to be discussed. Why? Because that’s not what it’s for. And nothing lets the steam out of the bottle before the soufflé rises so surely as casual talk – so I had to be satisfied by just watching him. Which I did. But if Brian wishes to whisper any tips to me now that he’s playing the great stages in the sky, he’s more than welcome.

Tix at the Rep will set you back a manageable amount and they are available here. It’s a holiday show. We open December and play through January and I hear there’s a nice advance, so please book soon if you plan to come.

A big shout out to two colleagues of Irish Rep fame, Mick Mellamphy and Tim Ruddy, two of the lads who were also in THE SEAFARER with me, Andy Murray and Matthew Broderick at The Rep a couple of years back.

Matthew Broderick and Andy Murray in The Seafarer at the Irish Rep 2017

Mick performs and Tim directs THE CURE, tix here, and for the price of a couple of pints. It’s bare bones, storytelling magic at its best. Mick turns in a virtuoso performance with nothing much behind him in terms of set. Doesn’t matter, not needed.

He takes you to Cork and back.

13 thoughts on “Nicely Busy

  1. Elizabeth Dimon

    How wonderful to hear your good tidings. Your ears might have been burning yesterday as we started rehearsals for “Ordinary Americans” at PBD and Rob Donahoe and Margery Lowe and I were chatting of you and Trish! Many congratulations and wish I could see yous! Love, Beth

  2. trollbyrm

    This is the best news I’ve heard in ages! Thank you.I worked with Mr. Bedford years ago; I got called in to take line notes for him as Shylock. In truth, he really didn’t need them, but he was adamant about being word perfect! My recently-late friend Andy Weems was in the Roundabout version with him, playing Solomon Isaacs (and understudying many.) Have a wonderful time!


  3. margery cholerton

    Colin, this is so wonderful and I’m so happy for both you and Patricia! I only hope I get to see both of you in your shows!!! Just started rehearsals at PBD this week with the lovely Beth Dimon, playing Molly Goldberg, and Rob Donahue, and I was telling them the news about your show that you shared with me by text! I didn’t know you had worked with Brian!! He and Michael Langham are actually the ones responsible for hiring me for Stratford (both gibe now). To say I am indebted to him, as well as marveled at his genius, is an understatement!!! Best wishes on rehearsals and I look forward to catching you on my next trip there! Much love, Margery


    1. Colin McPhillamy Post author

      Yes, worked with Brian in L.A. in The Moliere Comedies – he would take one show a week off and I went on for him (?!?). Also worked with Michael Langham in the show where I met Trish back in 1999! See you soon. All best for the project at PBD!

  4. Susan Lenfestey

    Well hello, this gives me heart strings a tug! Maybe a trip to NYC is in order to see Trish at the Schubert and you at the Irish Rep. Miss you both. xox

  5. Terence Clarke

    Oh curses! To miss Trish on The Great White Way …

    I came at the wrong time T

    On Thu, 7 Nov 2019 at 1:24 am, McPhillamyActorBlog wrote:

    > Colin McPhillamy posted: ” That young actress Patricia Conolly is back on > Broadway, she gave her first performance as Mrs Debose yesterday in TO KILL > A MOCKINGBIRD with the new cast at the Shubert Theatre with Ed Harris now > playing Atticus Finch. Tickets are available at mind-numb” >


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