Arts in Brief

FILE - In this undated file photo provided by Jeffrey Richards Associates, Audra McDonald, left, and Norm Lewis perform in a scene from "The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess" at the Richard Rogers Theatre in New York. Producers of the Broadway show, winner of the 2012 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical, announced Wednesday, July 18, 2012 that the production will have its final performance on Sept. 23, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeffrey Richards Associates, Michael J. Lutch, File)

NEW YORK — Broadway’s newest Little Orphan Annie has found her Sandy.

Award-winning animal trainer William Berloni unveiled the pooch who is slated to star in the Broadway revival of the Tony-winning musical “Annie.” Sunny is a 2-year-old terrier mix rescued from a shelter in Houston. Berloni, who located and trained the first stage dog for “Annie” more than three decades ago, makes it a point of using shelter dogs in all his projects.

Says Berloni: “The most talented animals are right there under your nose.”

“Annie,” starring 11-year-old Lilla Crawford in the title role and Katie Finneran as Miss Hannigan, will begin previews Oct. 3 at the Palace Theatre and open Nov. 8. Visit

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — PBS says a Ken Burns documentary on the Roosevelt family is in the works for 2014.

“The Roosevelts: An Intimate History” is a seven-part documentary that runs 14 hours. It will focus on President Franklin D. Roosevelt and wife Eleanor, and President Theodore Roosevelt.

Meryl Streep, Paul Giamatti and Edward Herrman will provide the voices of Eleanor and cousins Theodore and Franklin.

NEW YORK — Broadway’s Tony-winning revival of “Porgy and Bess” will close Sept. 23, making it the longest-running production of the Gershwin show to ever play on Broadway.

Producers said they must make room for another production this fall at the Richard Rodgers Theatre. When “Porgy and Bess” closes, it will have played 322 performances. The reworked opera opened in January starring Audra McDonald, David Alan Grier and Norm Lewis to strong reviews and was twice extended. McDonald won a Tony playing Bess.


NEW YORK — The nation’s new poet laureate will be telling her own story. Natasha Trethewey, 46, is working on a memoir that has been acquired by Ecco.

The publisher, an imprint of HarperCollins, says the book is scheduled to come out in 2014.

Trethewey is the daughter of a white father and black mother. The memoir will tell of her childhood in the American South.

Trethewey won the Pulitzer in 2007 for “Native Guard.” This fall, she begins a one-year term as U.S. poet laureate.

STRATFORD, Ontario — The Stratford Shakespeare Festival has unveiled its 2013 season, welcoming back Brian Dennehy and Brian Bedford.

The season features “The Merchant of Venice” with Bedford as Shylock, “Romeo and Juliet” and “Othello.” Other shows include “The Three Musketeers,” “Measure for Measure,” and “Blithe Spirit” directed by Bedford. Dennehy will star in “Mary Stuart” and “Waiting for Godot.”

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Academy of Country Music is donating $2.5 million to help expand the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum to more than double its size. The new digs will include the ACM Contemporary Gallery, spotlight emerging artists and trends in country music.

The museum began a capital campaign a year ago. More than $70 million has been secured. The expansion is planned to be completed in early 2014. Visit

Wire reports