In March of 2011, previews of the current revival of Anything Goes began at the Roundabout Theatre. Nearly a year later, the show is still going strong as one of the hottest shows on Broadway. Audiences, critics, and Tony® voters alike agree that Anything Goes is De-Lovely! Sutton Foster, who won her second Tony Award® for her performance in Anything Goes, is one of many acclaimed actresses who have filled the tap dancing shoes of Reno Sweeney since the show’s Broadway debut in1934.
Here’s a look at some of the talented actresses who have played Reno Sweeney over the years:
Ethel Merman starred as Reno Sweeney alongside Bing Crosby in a movie version of Anything Goes in 1936 and again in a 1954 television version with Frank Sinatra. Here’s a clip of Merman performing the title song in 1979 on the television show, “Musical Comedy Tonight” hosted by Sylvia Fine Kaye:
Patti LuPone earned a Tony® nomination and Drama Desk Award for her outstanding performance as Reno Sweeney in the 1987 Broadway revival of Anything Goes. Here’s her live performance of the title song at the 1987 Tony Awards®:
Following the huge success of the 1987 Broadway revival, Anything Goes sailed across the pond and opened in London’s West End in 1989. Elaine Paige starred as Reno Sweeney and also co-produced the London production. Here’s her performance of the title song on British Television’s “Wogan”:
The current Broadway revival of Anything Goes won 3 Tony Awards® in 2011 for Best Revival of a Musical, Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical and Best Choreography. Triple threat Sutton Foster and the cast of Anything Goes demonstrated some of Kathleen Marshall’s award-winning choreography in their performance at the 2011 Tony Awards®:
Performances of Anything Goes on Broadway have been extended through September, and the show will launch a national tour in October.
Who's your favorite Reno Sweeney? Is there an actress who hasn't yet played Reno Sweeney that you think would be perfect for the role?