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Kiss Me, Kate is Latest WTC Casualty logo

Burke Moses and Carolee Carmello in Kiss Me, Kate
(Photo: Joan Marcus)
Add one more to the list of shows closing early due to shaky ticket sales in the wake of the attack on the World Trade Center: Kiss Me, Kate will have its last bow at the Martin Beck Theatre this Sunday, September 23.

In an attempt to stave off further premature closings, New York City tourism chief Christyne Lategano-Nicholas and Zagat Surveys president Tim Zagat will lead a group of 50 New Yorkers to tonight's performance of The Full Monty at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre in a show of support for the theater industry. They will be joined by Full Monty stars Patrick Wilson and John Ellison Conlee for a brief press conference outside the O'Neill, beginning at 7:15pm. "We want to show New Yorkers that the show is going on," said Lategano-Nicholas in a statement issued via press release. "New York City has the most diverse and exciting theatre community in the world, and there are a number of ways New Yorkers can help support Broadway through this challenging time. One way is to come and buy tickets not only for yourself but for your friends, family, and staff."

Shows that have not already announced closings are plotting ways to cut costs in order to survive. Barbara Hauptman, executive director of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers, says that she expects her membership to be asked to accept royalty minimums for a period of time. Broadway minimum is $1,000 per week for directors, $500 for choreographers; Hauptman expects everyone affected to accept the proposal.

In the days, weeks, and months immediately following the horrific terrorist attacks on America, the subject matter of certain shows will continue to be an issue. A replacement for the Roundabout Theatre Company's indefinitely postponed production of Stephen Sondheim's Assassins has yet to be announced, but a spokesperson says it's just a matter of time before such an announcement is made. And though the exact December dates for Tony Kushner's Homebody/Kabul at the New York Theatre Workshop are not yet nailed down, that play will undoubtedly prompt huge interest before, during and after its opening: It's about an Englishman, fascinated by Afghanistan, who gives in to the desire to travel there and disappears.

Company members of New York City shows have continued to publicly acknowledge and mourn the World Trade Center tragedy in various ways. For example, when The Fantasticks resumed performances last week, the cast observed a moment of silence at the end of the show and held hands with the audience. Although business was off at the Sullivan Street Playhouse, there are no plans to close the incredibly long-running musical before January 13, when it had already been scheduled to shutter. The show opened in 1960.

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