The recent Broadway revival of the Noel Coward comedy Present Laughter will be playing a new venue: the PBS TV series Great Performances. On Friday, November 3 at 9 PM ET, the production starring Tony-winner Kevin Kline will be presented as part of the ongoing marathon of Broadway shows taped for the series which also include She Loves Me, Indecent, and Irving Berlin’s Holiday Inn. These presentations are directed for television by Emmy Award-winner David Horn, executive producer of both Great Performances and THIRTEEN’s local Theater Close-Up series.
“Noël Coward’s Present Laughter follows a self-obsessed actor in the midst of a mid-life crisis. Juggling his considerable talent, ego and libido, the theater’s favorite leading man suddenly finds himself caught between fawning ingénues, crazed playwrights, secret trysts and unexpected twists.”
This revival of Present Laughter opened on Broadway on April 5, 2017, and featured Kate Burton, Kristine Nielsen, and Cobie Smulders in the cast. The production ran for 101 performances and garnered Kevin Kline a Tony Award for his bravura performance. The production was directed by Moritz von Stuelpnagel. The ensemble includes Matt Bittner, Ellen Harvey, Peter Francis James, Tedra Millan, Bhavesh Patel, Reg Rogers, and Sandra Shipley, with Kelley Curran, Rachel Pickup, James Riordan, and David L. Townsend.
The creative team for Present Laughter features set design by Tony Award winner David Zinn, costume design by Tony Award winner Susan Hilferty, lighting design by two-time Tony Award nominee Justin Townsend, sound design by Fitz Patton, and hair design by Josh Marquette. Casting by Telsey + Company.
Also-airing as part of the Broadway festival are Great Performances encore presentations of In the Heights: Chasing Broadway Dreams (November 10) and Hamilton’s America (in December), up-close looks at the making of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Broadway hits. For a full list of Broadway’s Best on PBS, click HERE.
Mark Robinson is the author of the two-volume encyclopedia The World of Musicals and maintains a theater and entertainment blog at markrobinsonwrites.com.