Celebrities you can see on stage in New York right now
Many celebrity actors get their start in theatre, so it’s no surprise that many of them add a stage credit — or 2 or 10 — to their resumes. Theatre give celebrities a chance to work a different set of acting muscles from their screen, music, and even comedy work, and onstage, you can see your favorite stars in a whole new, live way.
Check out a Broadway or Off-Broadway show this season, and you might see a familiar face from your latest TV bingewatch or favorite film. Read below to find out who’s performing in New York right now, and maybe you’ll learn something new about their careers!
Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick in Plaza Suite
You know them from: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and The Producers; Sex and the City and Hocus Pocus
See them on stage in: Plaza Suite
Aw, how suite! Real-life celebrity couple Matthew Broderick and Sarah Jessica Parker will play three fictional couples in Neil Simon’s farce Plaza Suite in 2022. Besides being a high-profile duo, Broderick and Parker have each independently established iconic acting careers in their own right. Broderick is a two-time Tony Award winner for Brighton Beach Memoirs and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying; his first award for Best Featured Actor in a Play in 1983, made him the youngest-ever winner of that prize. He still holds the record. His other starring roles have been in Broadway’s The Producers, It’s Only a Play, and Nice Work If You Can Get It and in the films Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, The Lion King, and The Producers once more. All his work earned him a spot on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and in the American Theater Hall of Fame.
Parker played the iconic starring role of Carrie Bradshaw in HBO’s Sex and the City, a role she reprised in two SATC films and will revisit in the TV reboot, And Just Like That… The role earned her 10 Emmy nominations and two wins as well as 10 Golden Globe nominations and four wins. Her dozens of film credits include Hocus Pocus, Failure to Launch, and Honeymoon in Vegas, and other television credits include lead roles in Equal Justice, A Year in the Life, and Square Pegs. She’s also a Broadway veteran, having appeared in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying alongside her husband, Once Upon a Mattress, The Heidi Chronicles, and, when she was young, Annie.
Patrick J. Adams, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, and Jesse Williams in Take Me Out
You know them from: Suits; Modern Family; Grey’s Anatomy
See them on stage in: Take Me Out
The 2022 revival of Take Me Out, about a gay baseball player who faces discrimination , has a whole roster of stars on its team. First up to the plate is Patrick J. Adams, who received a Screen Actor’s Guild Award nomination for his role as Mike Ross in Suits. He has also appeared in TV shows such as NCIS, Lost, and Friday Night Lights.
Jesse Tyler Ferguson is best known for playing Mitch Pritchett for all 11 seasons of Modern Family. The role earned him five consecutive Emmy nominations, and he and the cast together won four Screen Actor’s Guild Awards for Outstanding Ensemble. Though known to wider audiences for his TV work, Ferguson has had an equally notable (and two-time Drama Desk Award-winning) Broadway career, having appeared in On The Town, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, and Fully Committed.
Finally, Jesse Williams, who stars in Take Me Out as baseball player Darren Lemming, is best-known for his longtime role as Dr. Jackson Avery on Grey’s Anatomy. His other screen work includes the films The Cabin in the Woods and Brooklyn’s Finest. Like Adams, Williams is making his Broadway debut, but Williams has appeared off Broadway in the past in productions including Tennessee Williams’s The Glass Menagerie and Edward Albee’s The American Dream, and The Sandbox (directed by Albee himself).
Hugh Jackman in The Music Man
You know him from: X-Men, Les Misérables, The Greatest Showman
See him on stage in: The Music Man
Hugh Jackman does it all. He’s best known to the masses as Wolverine in the X-Men film franchise, but when he’s not defeating comic-book supervillains, he’s probably singing in a movie or show somewhere. His Broadway debut in The Boy From Oz won him his first Tony Award (among multiple other accolades), and his special Broadway concert series, Hugh Jackman, Back on Broadway, earned him his second. He is a Golden Globe winner and Oscar nominee for starring as Jean Valjean in the 2012 Les Misérables film, and a Golden Globe nominee and Grammy winner for playing P. T. Barnum in The Greatest Showman. And that’s just a few of his credits. His latest, after not appearing on Broadway since 2014’s The River, is a star turn as Professor Harold Hill in the 2021 revival of The Music Man. He’s leading the big parade!
Pamela Anderson in Chicago
You know her from: Baywatch and Home Improvement
See her on stage in: Chicago
The name on everybody’s lips has been Pamela for years. After rising to fame for her appearances in Playboy magazine, Pamela Anderson became a screen star with the roles of Lisa on Home Improvement, Vallery Irons in V.I.P., and most famously, C.J. Parker on Baywatch. But besides acting and modeling, Anderson really does it all: she also produced V.I.P., she’s written six books, she’s an animal rights activist, and now, she’s making her Broadway debut in Chicago as Roxie Hart, the sweet yet sultry ingenue whose name makes headlines. We can’t think of a better role for Anderson.
Debra Messing in Birthday Candles
You know her from: Will & Grace and Smash
See her on stage in: Birthday Candles
Debra Messing is most widely known for playing interior designer Grace Adler on the NBC sitcom Will & Grace, a role that earned her 12 combined Emmy and Golden Globe nominations. Theatre fans might know her better, though, as bookwriter and lyricist Julia Houston on NBC’s Broadway-centered drama Smash. Messing is also a veteran stage actress, and appeared in Outside Mullingar on Broadway and Angels in America, The Naked Truth, and Collected Stories off Broadway. In Birthday Candles, Messing stars as a woman aging through 80 years of her life, and she stars alongside fellow television star Enrico Colantoni, of Veronica Mars fame, and Tony nominee John Earl Jelks.
Mary-Louise Parker and David Morse in How I Learned to Drive
You know them from: Weeds; St. Elsewhere and House
See them on stage in: How I Learned to Drive
It would take a whole article to get into the weeds of Mary-Louise Parker and David Morse’s prolific acting careers, so we’ll focus on the highlights. You might have kept up with Parker as Nancy Botwin on all eight seasons of Weeds, which earned her a Golden Globe Award and three Emmy nominations, or as Harper Pitt on the Angels in America miniseries, which earned her both a Golden Globe and an Emmy. She’s also a two-time Tony winner, for Proof and The Sound Inside.
Morse has enjoyed success as Detective Michael Tritter on House, a role that earned him an Emmy nomination, and as Dr. Jack “Boomer” Morrison on St. Elsewhere. But one of his most famous roles, especially among the theatre community, remains that of Uncle Peck in Paula Vogel’s Pulitzer-winning play How I Learned to Drive. He received Obie, Drama Desk, and Lucille Lortel Awards, and he starred alongside Parker. More than 20 years later, the pair are reuniting to take the wheel of the show’s Broadway premiere.
Laurence Fishburne, Sam Rockwell, and Darren Criss in American Buffalo
You know them from: black-ish; Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri; Glee
See them on stage in: American Buffalo
This trio may star as small-time hustlers, who concoct an elaborate scheme to get their money’s worth for a special buffalo nickel, but there’s nothing small-time about the real-life actors’ careers. The leader of the group is Laurence Fishburne, who’s won a Tony Award for Two Trains Running and an Emmy Award for TriBeCa and been in plenty of other high-profile projects like black-ish and What’s Love Got to Do With It on screen.
Sam Rockwell brought theatre to the screen as Bob Fosse in Fosse/Verdon, earning him an Emmy nomination and a Screen Actor’s Guild Award win, but most people know him as an Oscar winner for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. Darren Criss has made his name in Broadway shows like Hedwig and the Angry Inch and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, but he, too, is a screen star, having starred in Glee and winning Emmy and Golden Globe Awards for The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story.
James McAvoy in Cyrano de Bergerac
If you’re a superhero movie fan, you probably know James McAvoy as Professor X from X-Men. Or maybe you’re a thriller fan who loved his acclaimed performance in Split. Or maybe you grew up on The Chronicles of Narnia and loved him as Mr. Tumnus in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe back when you were a kid. All these roles together prove how versatile he is — and we haven’t even gotten to his stage career yet! McAvoy’s latest of four Olivier Award nominations was for playing a contemporary, leather-clad Cyrano in Cyrano de Bergerac. X marks the spot at Brooklyn Academy of Music, where he’ll be reprising that role in New York this spring.
Noah Reid, Tracy Letts, Jessie Mueller, and Blair Brown in The Minutes
You know them from: Schitt’s Creek; Homeland and Lady Bird; Waitress; Orange Is the New Black
See them on stage in: The Minutes
Tracy Letts’s new play, about secrets that get revealed at a town council meeting, packs plenty of star power into just 90 minutes. For one, there’s Letts himself, a Pulitzer- and Tony-winning writer/actor, who also stars in his show. He’s joined by Schitt’s Creek star Noah Reid, Tony winner (and additional four-time nominee) Jessie Mueller, and Golden Globe-nominated Orange is the New Black star Blair Brown. You’ve never seen a city council this starry.
Patti LuPone in Company
You know her from: Gypsy and Evita on stage, Pose and Hollywood on screen
See her on stage in: Company
Patti LuPone is something of a Broadway legend, as much for her Tony-winning turns in Gypsy and Evita as for her infamous, vocal opposition to cell phone use in the theatre. LuPone has also received Tony nominations for her performances in War Paint, Sweeney Todd, The Robber Bridegroom, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown, and Anything Goes and appeared in numerous other productions. She’s had an equally prolific career on London’s West End, originating the roles of Fantine in Les Misérables, Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard (both of which won her Olivier Awards) and, most recently, Joanne in a new production of Stephen Sondheim’s Company — a role LuPone is reprising now that the production has transferred to Broadway. We’ll drink to that!
Conrad Ricamora in Little Shop of Horrors
You know him from: How to Get Away With Murder
See him on stage in: Little Shop of Horrors
Conrad Ricamora has traded a Philadelphia university for a Skid Row flower shop. The screen star is best known for playing Oliver Hampton in How to Get Away with Murder, and now, he has to do just that in Little Shop of Horrors off Broadway. His character, Seymour, has to figure out how to satisfy a bloodthirsty plant’s appetite in exchange for fame, fortune, and love. But although he’s best known as a TV star, did you know he’s also an acclaimed stage actor? He’s been nominated for two Lucille Lortel Awards, one each for performing in Soft Power and Here Lies Love, and was in The King and I on Broadway.
Alfie Allen in Hangmen
You know him from: Game of Thrones
See him on stage in: Hangmen
After spending eight seasons in The Known World, Alfie Allen is returning to our own world for his Broadway debut. Allen is best known for his role as Theon Greyjoy in HBO’s Game of Thrones, and he’s also starred in films like John Wick opposite Keanu Reeves, The Predator, and Jojo Rabbit. He’s appeared on the British stage in shows like Equus (following Daniel Radcliffe in the lead role) but now he’s stepping onto the New York stage as Mooney, a London stranger who starts drama in Martin McDonagh’s play Hangmen.