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On Stage

On Stage: Three Women

Manuel Harlan

Women in theatre continue to command the stage, with three new shows in the works that are already grabbing the spotlight. Glenda Jackson, fresh from her fifth Tony nomination and first-time win for her leading role in Three Tall Women, is preparing to return to the Broadway stage next spring as the title character of Shakespeare's King Lear

The legendary Ms. Jackson first performed the role at the Old Vic in London in 2016 to great critical acclaim. It marked her return to the London stage after a 23-year absence spent as a member of Parliament, representing the Labour Party.

Coming up this fall is a new jukebox musical based on the life and career of the one and only Cher. From her early years as part of the Sonny and Cher pop duo and variety show host, to the hits that she performed as a solo vocalist and her unexpected triumph as a film actor, the show follows the trajectory of her 50-plus years in entertainment, and uses an unusual vehicle to do so: Cher is portrayed by three separate players, each representing a different era of her career.

And another pop singer to get the jukebox musical treatment is Dusty Springfield. Jonathan Harvey wrote the book for this show about Mary O'Brien, the daughter of Irish immigrants who became the smoky-voiced Dusty Springfield, battling stage fright and perfectionism all the way, even as she descended into addiction. Dusty recently opened in Bath to good reviews.