On Stage

Well, Helloooooo San Diego!

By Berto Fernández

Growing up in the 80’s and 90’s meant having a plethora of movie comedies to watch with your family every night. One of my absolute favorites was late Robin Williams’ iconic title role in Mrs. Doubtfire. Williams was not only hilarious with his characterizations and voices, but also tugged at our heart strings with relatable human sensibility and family connection that solidified the film as a classic. The 1993 hit was widely accepted by mainstream entertainment, even with a central plot involving a man in drag. Other A-List actors were comfortably diving into drag and gender bending roles, like in To Wong Foo: Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, and The Birdcage, also starring Williams. For those unfamiliar with the plot, the story follows Daniel, an out of work voice actor who is going through a rocky marriage and a disconnect with his family. During the process of his divorce, Daniel is facing the possibility of not being able to see his kids, which is when he comes up with the idea to disguise himself as a boisterous Scottish female nanny in order to continue seeing his family. 

A musical adaptation of the popular film had been in the works since 2015, but it wasn’t until 2019 that a full workshop of the show was put together with eyes on Broadway. After a very successful Seattle run, Mrs. Doubtfire started previews on Broadway March 9, 2020. Unfortunately, Coronavirus halted the world that same week, forcing the production to go on hiatus until October 2021, when it resumed its run until closing date May 29, 2022. The new musical comedy features a book by Karey Kirkpatrick and John O’Farrell and music and lyrics by Wayne Kirkpatrick and Karey Kirkpatrick, the Tony Award nominated team behind Something Rotten!

Broadway San Diego brings the National Tour of the production to the beautiful Civic Theater in Downtown San Diego for a short engagement from June 4, 2024, through June 9, 2024. This production is directed by four-time Tony Award winner Jerry Zaks and choreographed by Lorin Latarro. One of the exciting news about the North American Tour is that Rob McClure will reprise the role of Daniel/Mrs. Doubtfire, which earned him a Tony, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle Nominations for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical. The production even welcomes Maggie Lakis, McClure’s real-life partner, as Miranda, Daniel’s wife.

The creative team is rounded out by Music Supervisor, Arranger and Orchestrator Ethan Popp; Scenic Designer David Korins; Costume Designer Catherine Zuber; Lighting Designer, Philip S. Rosenberg; Sound Design by Brian Ronan and Craig Cassidy; Hair & Wig Designer David Brian Brown; and Casting by The Telsey Office (Craig Burns, CSA).

Whether you are familiar with the classic film or new to Mrs. Doubtfire, you will surely enjoy all the iconic scenes and quotes, undoubtedly bringing hilarity and joy to San Diego audiences. One…or two dollops of melting cake icing face mask at a time. Go watch the movie if you don’t get that reference and thank me later.