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STAGE

<i> Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press</i>

Broadway producer David Merrick is holding the curtain on his musical “42nd Street” for 15 minutes to take advantage of the disappointed hordes turned away from the popular “The Phantom of the Opera,” playing right across 44th Street at the Majestic. Starting Jan. 12, Merrick will change the starting time for evening performances of “42nd Street” at the St. James Theater from 8 to 8:15 p.m., and Wednesday and Saturday matinees for the musical will switch from 2 to 2:15 p.m. Merrick is also having a troupe of dancers tap their way through the theater district, all of them wearing sandwich boards proclaiming, “David Merrick is holding the curtain for YOU!”


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