Lady in the Dark

Original Broadway Production (1941)

Trivia & History

The show took the summer off. The second run is sometimes listed as a return engagement, but is more often listed as a continuation of the original run. It was not unusual in the 1930s and 1940s for shows to lay off for part or all of the summer and then re-open, often right after Labor Day. In most cases, the performance count generally given includes both runs.

The production was originally supposed to open on January 16, 1941, but Lawrence became ill with the grippe, and the opening was postponed for a week. A preview had been scheduled for January 15, but it was canceled due to Lawrence's illness.

Lawrence was well enough to return to the show on Monday, January 20, but the Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evening performances of that week were heavily pre-sold to parties, with no room for the critics. Those performances were counted as previews, with opening night being Thursday's performance. No Wednesday matinee seems to have been given that week.

Producer Sam H. Harris invited the critics for the major New York morning papers to Boston to see one of the performances there. The reason for this was so the critics could see the entire show, which ran until around 11:30 p.m., rather than leaving at 11 to file their reviews, as they invariably did, and thereby missing the last half hour of the show. At least three of them — Atkinson of the Times, Watts of the Post, and Coleman of the Mirror — made the trip, as did Howard Barnes, movie reviewer of the Tribune, who covered first nights for WOR, giving (according to Variety) "a miniature notice by radio immediately after performances."

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