The start of the national tour of “Looped” has been delayed about a month due to the hospitalization of star Valerie Harper. The show will now begin February 26 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, rather than the previously released date of January 24.
The Emmy Award-winning and Tony Award-nominated actress was being treated in Manhattan as of January 15 and “is expected to make a full recovery within weeks,” according to at statement released by producers.”
Harper originated the role of Tallulah Bankhead in the original production of “Looped” held at the Pasadena Playhouse in California, and also played the role when the Matthew Lombardo play opened at Broadway’s Lyceum Theatre on March 14, 2010. It played 25 performances before closing the following month.
The national tour was initially set to begin in Hartford, Connecticut at the Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts January 26-February 6. The show will now move to the city’s larger Mortensen Hall and play from May 7-12.
“Based on a true story, ‘Looped’ takes place in the summer of 1965, when an inebriated Tallulah Bankhead (Harper) stumbled into a sound studio to re-record (or ‘loop’) one line of dialogue for her last movie, ‘Die, Die, My Darling,” according to producers. “Given her intoxicated state and her inability to loop the line perfectly, what ensues is a hilarious showdown between an uptight and conservative sound editor, Danny Miller, and the outrageous legend.”
The news of Harper’s hospitalization comes just after she revealed in a new memoir (“I, Rhoda”) that she was diagnosed with lung cancer while doing preparation for the original New York premiere of the show back in 2009. The actress, best known for her portrayal of Rhoda in “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and “Rhoda,” said that she is sharing her cancer story now because lung cancer is killing “more women… than breast, ovarian and colon cancer combined.”