Faye Tackles Hepburn

I typically wouldn’t have a Fayewatch item this early in the column.  But trust me, this is no normal Fayewatch.  Then again, there is no such thing as a “normal” Fayewatch.  For the past few years, Miss Dunaway’s professional output has been limited to a curious extended commercial for Gucci and shuffling onstage at two consecutive Academy Awards – thus ensuring her spot when it’s time for the inevitable In Memoriam segment.  That was all a warm-up for her grand return to Broadway.  Ah, the Great White Way.  Faye hasn’t appeared there since 1982 – I believe she was 82 at the time.  And she’s finally found a vehicle to harness her unique talents, such as they are.  She will star in Tea at Five, a one-woman show about…brace yourself, Katharine Hepburn!  Well, when you think of people suitable to play dead grand dames, who else?  The press release indicates that the run will take place sometime next summer and will be a “strictly limited engagement” (I will refrain from the obvious joke).  Here’s something the press release doesn’t say – the first choice for the role of Miss Hepburn was the divine Charles Busch!  And I should know: I was there.  Back in 2011, Busch starred in a one-night-only performance of Matthew Lombardo’s revised play, which was a benefit for the Ali Forney Center.  Needless to say, he was magical.  Charles was courted for a full run, but Busch marches to the beat of his own drum and declined.  So, essentially Faye is replacing a fella in a frock.  How curious – usually it’s the other way around.

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