Tony Nomination Spotlight – Present Laughter

Present Laughter on Broadway

Present Laughter

Three 2017 Tony Award Nominations:

Best Revival of a Play, Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play (Kevin Kline), Best Costume Design of a Play.

A Self-Obsessed Actor in Crisis Mode:

Oscar and two-time Tony winner Kevin Kline stars in a revival of  Present Laughter, Noël Coward’s backstage comedy that follows an actor dealing with a mid-life crisis.

From the Producers:

Present Laughter follows a self-obsessed actor in the midst of a mid-life crisis. Juggling his considerable talent, ego and libido, the theater’s favorite leading man suddenly finds himself caught between fawning ingénues, crazed playwrights, secret trysts and unexpected twists.

A Comedy Classic Returns to Broadway:

Present Laughter was written by Noël Coward in 1939 and first staged in 1942. The play’s title comes from a song in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, which urges carpe diem (“present mirth hath present laughter”). Coward acknowledged that the central character, the egocentric actor Garry Essendine, was a self-caricature. Later productions have featured actors such as Nigel Patrick, Albert Finney, Donald Sinden, Peter O’Toole, Simon Callow and Ian McKellen in the lead role. The play has enjoyed numerous revivals in Europe and North America – including a US tour in 1958 with Coward reprising the Essendine role. Present Laughter was first staged in the United States in 1946 at the Plymouth Theatre on Broadway. The current staging marks the sixth Broadway production of the play since its debut. The current revival began previews in March 2017 and marks the stage return of Academy Award and two-time Tony Award winner Kevin Kline after a ten-year absence.  The cast also features Tony and Emmy Award nominee Kate Burton, Tony Award nominee Kristine Nielsen,  and stage and screen star Cobie Smulders. The production is directed by Tony Award nominee Moritz von Stuelpnagel (Hand to God).

Kevin Kline on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert:


Hollywood Reporter: “Kline yields a performance of unimpeachable skill, made all the more delectable by its lightness of touch.”

New York Magazine: “In the hands of Kline and a vividly intelligent supporting cast, it’s a great and frank and still modern comedy.”

NY1: “Coward’s sublime comedy is as delightful, delicious, and ‘delovely’ as ever.”

Variety: “A delicious drawing-room comedy…Kline relishes the comic challenge in this snazzy production…his timing is impeccable.”

The Present Laughter Family:

Get Tickets to Present Laughter Now!

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