When we think of Breakfast at Tiffany’s it is hard not to think of the iconic portrayals of Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard, but excited Broadway audiences are giving it a try. The Cort Theatre officially opened their new production of Breakfast at Tiffany’s on March 20th. The show has been in preview since March 4th.
Transforming Truman Capote’s novella into a new stage production isn’t the only reason some audiences are excited. Game of Thrones starlet Emilia Clarke makes her Broadway debut in this new vision of Holly Golightly, a New York playgirl with a wistful, whimsical chic. The play is a new adaptation by Richard Greenberg, a Tony award-winner, who attempts to keep the story more as Capote intended it and break away from the legendary and beloved film. That means the play is a bit darker and racier than many theater attendees might expect.
This version of the story takes places largely in flashback, as writer Paul Varjak, better known as Fred (this time played by Cory Michael Smith) and his supportive bar-tending friend (played by George Wendt of Cheers fame) remember their times with the elusive and haunting Miss Golightly. The story doesn’t happen in 1961 as does the film, but shows us many year, mostly the wartime 1940s. The sets are minimal and harken back to the film more than other elements. The costumes are beautifully done and both showcase the loveliness of both young protagonists, but also support their characterization as artfully drifting and just a bit lost.
The show clocks in at a substantive 2 and a half hours with a short intermission. For fans of the story, it will be a welcome new adaptation, for those nostalgic for the film, it might be a tougher sell. Don’t go hoping for Mancini-supported romance, but for a story of transformation, escape, youthful fascination, and first love, broken hearts and all.
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