Brian Murray, Jayne Houdyshell and Jessie Austrian will join the Broadway revival of the Oscar Wilde classic The Importance of Being Earnest on March 22, taking on the roles of Reverend Chasuble, Miss Prism and Gwendolen Fairfax, respectively. They will be taking over for Paxton Whitehead, Dana Ivey and Sara Topham, who will play their final performances on March 20.
Murray, Houdyshell and Austrian will join current Earnest cast members David Furr, Santino Fontana, Tim MacDonald, Paul O’Brien and Charlotte Parry, with Brian Bedford doing double duty as Lady Bracknell and the show’s director.
Houdyshell has appeared on Broadway in Bye Bye Birdie and Wicked; off-Broadway credits include The Language Archive, Coraline, The Receptionist, The New Century, The Pain and the Itch, Well and Much Ado About Nothing.
Murray’s Broadway credits include Mary Stuart, The Rivals, The Crucible, Uncle Vanya, Twelfth Night, The Little Foxes, Racing Demon, A Small Family Business, Noises Off, Black Comedy, Sleuth, Da and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead.
Austrian has been seen on Broadway in Lend Me a Tenor; other stage credits include The Marriage of Bette and Boo, Cymbeline, Jane Eyre, Is He Dead? and The Mystery of Edwin Drood.
The Importance of Being Earnest is a classic comedy of mistaken identity, which ridicules codes of propriety and etiquette. Dashing men-about-town John Worthing and Algernon Moncrieff pursue fair ladies Gwendolen Fairfax and Cecily Cardew. Matters are complicated by the imaginary characters invented by both men to cover their on-the-sly activities—not to mention the disapproval of Gwendolen’s mother, the formidable Lady Bracknell.
Earnest is running through July 3 at the American Airlines Theatre.