Photo: LA Times
Fanny Brice has been recast. She will now be played by Lea Michele after Beanie Feldstein in the Broadway revival of Funny Girl.
Feldstein gained traction for becoming the first woman to portray Fanny on Broadway since the original actress, Barbra Streisand, started the role. However, the 29-year-old announced on Sunday that she would bow out of the show at the end of this month after revealing her plans to step away from the production in September.
Speculations circulated that Michele, famous for her own version of the Funny Girl tune “Don’t Rain on My Parade,” would assume the role.
The Glee actress has professional ties with the show’s filmmaker, Michael Mayer, who helped launch her to the theatrical stage by casting and directing her in Spring Awakening.
Unfortunately, we won’t see a Glee reunion because Michele’s role as Fanny won’t converge with former co-actor Lynch portraying her mother. Yet, Tovah Feldshuh will play the role of Mrs. Brice when Michele starts on September 6.
Julie Benko, Feldstein’s understudy, who gained firm audiences when she played the role in the star’s nonappearance, will step in during the transition between Feldstein’s exit on July 31 and Michele’s entry.
Ramin Karimloo, who plays Nick Arnstein, and Jared Grimes, who stars as Eddie Ryan, will still participate in the production through the casting change.