After recapturing the public’s imagination as the inspiration for the highly-praised HBO film Behind the Candelabra, the legendary entertainer Liberace will be the subject on an unauthorized Broadway musical. All That Glitters will star Richard Kline of TV’s Three Company as one of three actors to play the flamboyant piano virtuoso at various stages of his life from child prodigy to Las Vegas headliner.
Written by Alexander DeJong, James A. Walsh, and Tom Nelson, the show is expected to open on Broadway during the 2014-15 season after a premiere engagement in Toronto in the fall of 2014. DeJong will also direct and choreograph. As an actor, DeJong has appeared on Broadway in 42nd Street and My Fair Lady. Costumes will be designed by Bob Mackie, famous for his opulent creations for such stars as Cher and Carol Burnett.
The career of Wladzio Valentine Liberace spanned four decades of concerts, recordings, films and TV appearances including his own variety series. The 1978 Guinness Book of World Records listed him as the world’s highest paid musician. His personal style and stage shows were noted for their extravagance and opulence. “I’m a one-man Disneyland,” he once said. In addition to his own show, Liberace appeared numerous times on The Tonight Show and guest-starred on such series as Here’s Lucy, The Monkees, Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In, Kojak, Batman, and The Muppet Show. He died in 1987 at the age of 67 of AIDS-related illness.
In 1988, there were two separate Liberace TV movies. ABC’s Liberace starred Andrew Robinson as the showman and Rue McClanahan as his mother while CBS’ Liberace: Behind the Music was headlined by Victor Garber and Maureen Stapleton in those roles.