“The Miss Firecracker Contest” is coming to Broadway this spring and will star Amber Tamblyn. Opening dates, theater and additional casting will be announced at a later date.
The Beth Henley play first ran Off-Broadway in 1984, where it received much critical praise and played a large part in launching the career of Holly Hunter, who starred in that production as Carnelle Scott, the role Tamblyn will play. Hunter also played the role in the 1989 film adaptation of the play, which also starred Tim Robbins and Mary Steenburgen.
The play tells the story of Scott, a lonely Mississippi orphan hoping to turn her life around by winning the Miss Firecracker Contest. She has been dubbed “Miss Hot Tamale” in her town of Brookhaven, Miss., and she hopes winning the contest will allow her to leave the state.
Tamblyn has been nominated for Emmy Awards, Golden Globe Awards and Independent Spirit Awards and is known for her television work in the title role of “Joan of Arcadia,” as well as on “House.” Her film work includes “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants,” “127 Hours” and “The Ring.”
The play will be the Broadway debut for Tamblyn, and the production will mark the Broadway directorial debut of Judith Ivey, a Tony Award-winning actress. Ivey currently appears in the Broadway revival of “The Heiress.”
“The Miss Firecracker Contest” will be the third Broadway play for Henley, and her first since 1982’s “The Wake of Jamey Foster.” Her other Broadway play, “Crimes of the Heart,” won a Pulitzer Prize for drama.
The lead producer of the play is Larry Kaye, who will also produce another Broadway play set to premiere this spring, “The Velocity of Autumn.” Kaye’s company HOP Theatricals has invested in a few recent Broadway musicals including “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” and “American Idiot.”