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Taking Names: Katie Holmes heading to Broadway in new play

- - Sunday, July 22, 2012

Katie Holmes has decided what her first major acting project will be since announcing her divorce from Tom Cruise: Broadway.

The actress will star in Theresa Rebeck's "Dead Accounts," a five-character comedy that will be directed by three-time Tony Award winner Jack O'Brien, producers said Thursday.

All eyes were on Ms. Holmes' next step as a single woman. Was it to be a big film or a small one? Or more TV? Her decision to return to the physically strenuous eight-show-a-week life of a Broadway stage actress indicates a willingness to jump into the deep end.

Her last appearance on Broadway, which also marked her debut, was in the 2008 production of "All My Sons." The news that she will return to a Times Square stage is also a signal that she may intend to stay in New York City.

Ms. Holmes first came to stardom in the teen soap opera "Dawson's Creek," and had roles in such well-regarded films as "The Ice Storm," "Go" and "Wonder Boys."

Reviews for her work in Arthur Miller's classic 1947 "All My Sons" were mixed, with the Associated Press saying Ms. Holmes "has a striking physical presence, although not much vocal variety" and USA Today saying that "at best, she exhibits a girlish exuberance that could serve her well in certain stage roles."

Ms. Rebeck's new play, which had its world premiere at the Cincinnati Playhouse this winter, will open on Broadway this fall at the Music Box Theatre. Dates and other casting news will be announced later.

"Dead Accounts" centers on a son who returns to his family's home in Cincinnati flush with money, which raises red flags for his sister, who is living with their elderly parents. Ms. Holmes will play the sister, a not-very-glamorous part for a woman who lately has landed on the cover of every tabloid.

Producers in a statement said the comedy "tackles the timely issues of corporate greed, small town values and whether or not your family will always welcome you back."

Blue Man Group show in Vegas ends, another begins

A new version of the popular Blue Man Group show is opening on the Las Vegas Strip this fall as another one ends its run at the Venetian.

Blue Man Group co-founder Chris Wink said the new production set to open Oct. 10 in the Monte Carlo Resort aims to take risks and "do something different."

Show officials say a parade of drummers, musicians, robots and puppets will make its way through the casino each day, 45 minutes before the first show. Other new elements include an assembly-line robot, new instruments and a virtual exploration of the human brain.

Tickets start at $59 and run to $215 for a VIP backstage experience.

Show officials say the last Blue Man Group show at the Venetian resort is set for Sept. 30.

Yoakum gets assist from Beck on his new album

Credit Beck with shaping the sound of Dwight Yoakam's new album.

The casual acquaintances finally got together in the studio after a few years of talking about it, and the two songs they did together helped point Mr. Yoakam along the way to "3 Pears," his first album of original material since 2005.

"It really acted as a springboard, I think, for how I approached the execution of recording the rest of the album," Mr. Yoakam said in an Associated Press phone interview. "We kept it very simple in terms of offense, just myself, a drummer and a bass player — three of us laying the basic track down. I was doing what might be a scratch electric guitar and ended up in many cases being kept or being overdubbed by me to fully realize the emotional intent in how I was playing."

Mr. Yoakam's first album in his return to Warner Bros. Records comes out Sept. 18. He has been working on the 12 songs for "3 Pears" since 2008 and jokingly describes the process as "reaaall, reaaaallllll sloooww."

He started recording the album at Beck's home studio in California with "Heart Like Mine" and "Missing Heart." The rock 'n' roll performer and producer is known for his authenticity and he convinced Mr. Yoakam to keep things simple and honest. Mr. Yoakam told Beck he had "no business" leaving his scratch guitar lines on the record, but the producer disagreed.

Mr. Yoakam said the recordings reflected the emotion in the song, rather than the precision of the notes, which was key. The entire album is full of emotion and offers Mr. Yoakam's first love songs in 25 years.

Georgia May Jagger getting comfortable with modeling

Give Georgia May Jagger a photo of herself and she'll find the one little thing wrong with it. In that way, she's just like most of us. She can spot from a mile away the nervous smile or unflattering pose.

But as she develops her modeling career, the 20-year-old said she's getting better at accepting these things and, honestly, getting better at her job.

"Even the most successful models, it takes getting used to. Fashion and photos can still be intimidating, even if you're always around it, but they're not as much now as my first ones!"

With a little more practice, maybe she'll be as smooth and graceful as her model mom Jerry Hall, or as comfortable in her own skin as her rock-star dad Mick Jagger.

Yes, Ms. Jagger is no stranger to being around a camera. It's very much in her blood.

"I ask my mom for advice often. It's not specifically 'how to model' — you have to develop that yourself — but I'll ask her about fashion. I've seen her work before, and we talk about work. She's obviously very experienced," Ms. Jagger said.

From her dad, Ms. Jagger, who has posed for Chanel and Versace, among others, gets some of her eclectic style, she said, but she'd describe her own look as a little less flashy than his. She has a bit of the old English countryside style in her closet, combined with glam rock touches. Vivienne Westwood is a favorite designer.

Ms. Jagger is the new spokesmodel for Material Girl, the collection designed by Madonna and her daughter, Lola. "I do think it represents Madonna's style when she was younger. Girls my age are still trying to do it. It's all youthful and fun and carefree style that she's known for."

The mix of bustier dresses with a Peter Pan-collar top and supershort bandeau minis are up Ms. Jagger's mix-and-match alley, too. "I like that it's not sticking to all the regular things."

Compiled from Web and wire reports