If you missed Billy Crystal’s smash-hit solo show 700 Sundays on Broadway nine years ago, you’ve got another chance: The popular comedian will take the stage at the Imperial Theatre beginning November 5 for a nine-week run. The title of the Tony-winning evening refers to the amount of time Crystal had with his beloved dad, Jack, who died on October 15, 1963, when Billy was 15.
“It’s the 50th anniversary of his death and I turned 65 this year,” Crystal told Michael Riedel of The New York Post, “so I thought it was a good time to come back to New York with the show.” In an eerie coincidence, the star was onstage doing an invited run-through of 700 Sundays at the exact moment he had learned of his father’s death 50 years before, in the fall of 1963. “The 200 people there that night saw, well, not a performance; they saw me,” Crystal said. “It was the rawest, the purest thing I have ever done.”
Given Crystal’s box office clout, Riedel asked why he has never headlined a Broadway play or musical. The amused star responded, “Mel Brooks asked me to go into The Producers as Max Bialystock. I told him I’d always dreamed of working with him, but I wasn’t sure if I wanted to be the eighth Max Bialystock. He said, ‘’The eighth? You’ll be the 12th!’ Oh, sure. Thanks, Mel.”
Get tickets now to see Billy Crystal in 700 Sundays, which will run on Broadway through January 2, 2014.