The show interests me a great deal. It's written by David Javerbaum, a multi-Emmy-winning writer from The Daily Show, who writes hilarious tweets under the Twitter-handle of "God." And it stars Jim Parsons. Both Parsons and the play have received great acclaim, but the show has closed since it was only booked for a limited run because the actor had to get back to Los Angeles for his show, The Big Bang Theory.
During the conversation, I mentioned that I was surprised it closed after the limited run. I knew that Parsons had to leave, but I'd have thought they'd have just gotten another actor to take over the role. It's possible that they only booked the theater for the six weeks (not knowing it would be such a big hit) and nothing else was available. Still, I'm surprised. I suspect it will eventually returned.
Anyway, when I expressed my surprise that they didn't bring in another actor, the guy (who loved the play, by the way) said that Parsons was so wonderful in it that he was really the only one for the role. This is a fairly common response to a hit show in New York -- I recall that famously it was said about Fiddler on the Roof and Zero Mostel, people being sure the show would close after he left. As you might have noticed it didn't, and went on to be the longest-running show in Broadway history at the time. And has been revived there several times. And has played around the world for half a century.
I repeated my contention that they could have found another actor. And he repeated that Parsons was just simply too good.
I tried another tack. It was one of those disagreements you couldn't prove, so it wasn't worth arguing about, but I did want to get across better what I meant. I commented that if Jim Parsons hadn't wanted to do the play in the first place, I'm sure they'd have found someone else, rather than not ever staging it in New York. To his credit, the guy thought a moment and agreed, and said yes, there probably are other actors.
Anyway, so after the meal I got home. And in my mailbox was a flyer from the Music Center about their upcoming production at the Ahmanson Theater in January of...An Act of God!! It's starring Sean Hayes. And y'know, knowing almost nothing about the play but only that Jim Parsons was in it and the few clips I've seen, that strikes me as terrific casting.
Above all, though, what impeccable, hilarious timing. Not anything I'd call an act of God, of course, but if He really likes the show, this is certainly a good way to give it some added PR.