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Battle of the Broadway Jesses

Broadway

Courtesy of Robert Mannis (Ferguson). Frank Ockenfels (Lange).

This season, two Hollywood stars return to the rialto after a decade away. But whose performance will really get audiences gagging? 

Jesse Tyler Ferguson in Fully Committed 

(Opening April 25 at the Lyceum Theatre)

The plot: This comedy about a reservation agent at a fancy restaurant features more than 40 characters, from irate customers to pushy waiters. And they’re all played by one person: Ferguson.

Is there a big diva moment? Indirectly. In one scene
Ferguson is Gwyneth Paltrow's hyper-cheerful assistant. Yay! 

Any good? It ain’t deep, but Becky Mode’s script is so tasty it’s been served up dozens of times since its 1999 premiere. So, yeah.

Jessica Lange in A Long Day’s Journey Into Night

(Opening April 27 at the American Airlines Theatre)

The plot: In Eugene O’Neill’s classic about an unraveling family, Lange plays a morphine-addled mother from hell. 

Is there a big diva moment? More like 34. But the best one comes at the very end, when Mama descends a staircase in a fog of drugs and regret. Yay!

Any good? Who wouldn’t want to see Lange sink her teeth into the original American horror story? It’s only, like, one of the most important theatrical works ever.

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