Lea Michele is under the weather and will miss performances of Broadway's Funny Girl March 14 and 15, according to production social media posts. With the Glee star's usual schedule already seeing her sit out Thursday performances and a previously scheduled vacation on the calendar through March 19, Michele will be out of the production until at least March 21. Standby Julie Benko will lead performances as Fanny Brice in Michele's absence.
Funny Girl also stars Ramin Karimloo as Nick Arnstein, 2022 Tony nominee Jared Grimes as Eddie Ryan, Tovah Feldshuh as Mrs. Brice, Peter Francis James as Florenz Ziegfeld, Ephie Aardema as Mrs. Nadler, Debra Cardona as Mrs. Meeker, Toni DiBuono as Mrs. Strakosh, and Martin Moran as Tom Keeney.
The ensemble features Amber Ardolino, Daniel Beeman, Kurt Csolak, Leslie Donna Flesner, Afra Hines, Masumi Iwai, Aliah James, Stephen Mark Lukas, John Thomas Manzari, Katie Mitchell, Justin Prescott, Mariah Reives, and Leslie Blake Walker. Rounding out the company are standbys Liz McCartney and Jeremiah James and swings Colin Bradbury, John Michael Fiumara, Danielle Kelsey, and Alicia Lundgren.
Building upon Jule Styne's original score and Bob Merrill's lyrics, Tony winner Harvey Fierstein revised the book (from Isobel Lennart's original) for this revival of the biomusical tracking real-life singer and comic Fanny Brice. From humble beginnings in Brooklyn, New York, Brice rose to fame and fortune onstage in the Ziegfeld Follies and as a radio and screen performer. The original 1964 production propelled a young Barbra Streisand to international fame; she reprised her stage performance in the 1968 film adaptation, winning an Academy Award and a Golden Globe in the process.
In a rare occurrence, the cast album, released January 20, features the production's replacement stars, Michele and Feldshuh.