The end of the 19-day Broadway strike was celebrated at Broadway’s Back, a free concert that was held noon on Friday, November 30 at the Marriott Marquis Theatre, featuring performers from more than 20 shows.
The 25-minute event began with a clever, strike-related monologue delivered by Bob Martin as “Man in Chair,” the character he originated in The Drowsy Chaperone (which continues to run at the Marquis). He then introduced special guest Bernadette Peters, who sang some of the original lyrics of “There’s No Business Like Show Business,” before being joined by Cheyenne Jackson, Jonathan Groff, Laura Bell Bundy, and Howie Michael Smith.
After the conclusion of that song, Martin briefly interviewed George Wendt, who recently took over the role of Edna Turnblad in Hairspray, Michael Longoria, who is now playing Frankie Valli full-time in Jersey Boys, and Sean Mahon, one of the stars of The Seafarer. That segment was followed by a “surprise” visit by Bob Saget, who is currently playing “Man in Chair” in Chaperone.
The concert concluded with Angela Lansbury coming out to sing “We Need A Little Christmas” (from Mame), joined by Kerry Butler, Stephanie J. Block, Lea Michele, Carolee Carmello, along with the rest of the performers, which included Annaleigh Ashford, John Bolton, Max Crumm, Shannon Durig, Dierdre Goodwin, Beth Leavel, Laura Osnes, and Tamyra Gray. Fantasia, who was scheduled to attend, could not be there.