Broadway Friday

– Next month openly gay heartthrob and Torchwood star John Barrowman will release an album of recent Broadway hit songs, including numbers from The Boy From Oz, Dreamgirls, and Mamma Mia. This week Barrowman battled Neil Patrick Harris in an amusing Twitter war over who would be named After Elton’s “Man Of The Decade.” NPH won.

– Green Day’s American Idiot musical begins Broadway previews on February 24th at the St. James. Casting has not been announced.

– Despite her “discernible fragility,” 85 year-old Elaine Stritch is winning positive reviews for her Sondheim retrospective at the Cafe Carlyle.

– Original cast members Rosie O’Donnell and Natasha Lyone will return to the Off Broadway production of Love, Loss, And What I Wore beginning in March.

– This week the revival of Chicago becomes the sixth longest-running production in Broadway history. On Tuesday the show reaches 4562 performances, edging the now-closed Beauty And The Beast. The top five: The Phantom of the Opera, Cats, Les Miserables, A Chorus Line, and Oh! Calcutta. Former Destiny’s Child member Michelle Williams takes over the role of Roxie Hart in February, replacing Ashlee Simpson.

– Tony winner Norbert Leo Butz will star in Enron as disgraced company president Jeffrey Skillings. Previews begin April 8th at the Broadhurst. In July 2009, Butz’ lesbian sister Teresa was raped and murdered in a Seattle home invasion. The apprehended killer faces the death penalty.

– Off Broadway’s gay sex and politics drama Loaded will close a week early on January 17th. Great show, see my review.

– Jon Marans’ The Temperamentals begins a new Off Broadway production February 18th at the New World Stages. The show tells the story of Harry Hay and the early gay activist group The Mattachine Society. Ugly Betty’s Michael Urie returns as Rudi Gernreich. The play sold out every performance at its earlier run last spring at the Studio Theatre. Great show, see my review.