"The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Capitalism and Socialism With a Key to the Scriptures" will open in New York on May 5, nearly two years after its world premiere at the Guthrie Theater. The Public Theater’s production starts previews March 22 with a cast that includes Michael Cristofer, Linda Emond, Michael Esper and Stephen Spinella — who all appeared in Minneapolis. Not one of the Twin Cities actors from the Guthrie staging was cast in New York.

While an item in the New York Times noted that more casting is yet to come, the biggest absence right now is Kathryn Chalfant, a longtime favorite of playwright Tony Kushner. That would seem to confirm that Kushner wrote her character out of the script. She played the sister to Cristofer’s main character and (according to my review) seemed to provide the "spiritual guide" element.

The Michael Greif, who directed the show here and during a workshop at the Public, is at the helm again. Kushner of course was still writing the script for the Guthrie production right up to opening night. Controversy splashed up when national theater critics were discouraged from coming to Minneapolis because — it was said — the show was headed for Broadway under the auspices of producer Scott Rudin and wouldn’t the critics rather judge it there?

Needless to say, that never happened. It made much more sense for Kushner to take "IHo" to the Public, where his good friend and champion Oskar Eustis could help get it in shape.

So if you need a reason for that springtime theater trip to New York, might be fun to see what Tony has done with the show.



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