Carrie Fisher headed to Broadway with solo show, “Wishful Drinking”


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It’s back to Broadway for the first time in 27 years for Carrie Fisher, who’ll open her one-woman memoir-show, ‘Wishful Drinking,’ on Oct. 4 for a three-month limited engagement.

Given some of the tipsy contretemps in her yarn, which premiered at the Geffen Playhouse in 2006, it’s perhaps fitting that Fisher will be performing at Studio 54, the erstwhile den of disco iniquity that’s now a Broadway house run by the Roundabout Theatre Company.


Directing is Tony Taccone, artistic director of Berkeley Repertory Theatre, which staged ‘Wishful Drinking’ last year, then sent Fisher on tour with her quip-filled account of growing up in a dysfunctional Hollywood family (Eddie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds being dad and mom), then going supernova as Princess Leia in ‘Star Wars.’ Having hit the boards at regional theaters in Santa Fe, San Jose, Hartford, Washington, D.C., and Boston, she’s currently performing ‘Wishful Drinking’ at the Seattle Repertory Theatre, through May 3.

Reviewing the L.A. premiere, which was directed by Joshua Ravetch, Times critic Charles McNulty described ‘Wishful Drinking’ as ‘hilariously ennobling -- or could I mean ignoble?’ He added, ‘You can call Fisher many things -- an unflagging exhibitionist for starters -- but she has a candor that makes her a most reliable witness to the far-fetched autobiography that is at once her curse and cure.’

No matter how strange Fisher’s life may have gotten -- her show includes a segment in which she invites questions from the audience about what it was like to wake up next to the corpse of a friend, Greg Stevens -- even playing herself probably can’t top the strangeness of her last Broadway part. That was in 1982, when she succeeded Amanda Plummer as the titular novice nun in John Pielmeier’s ‘Agnes of God’ -- a young woman who has committed infanticide after experiencing what she insists was a virgin birth.

-- Mike Boehm