Broadway Backwards Highlights: From "The Man I Love" to "Barcelona," Stars Gender-Bend Show Tunes

By Harry Haun
19 Mar 2013

Tony Sheldon
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Woven throughout the evening were comedy sketches about a couple of gay gray-beards being forced to the brink of commitment by the legality of gay marriage. It was also a means of working in some topical humor as recent as a new pope and renewed Twinkies as well as touching on more established signs-of-the-times like gay parenting a Pakistani baby.

Jim Brochu, a Drama Desk Award-winning Zero Mostel, and Tony Sheldon, the Tony-nominated Bernadette of Priscilla Queen of the Desert, fitted snugly together like Ollie and Stan on a lavender toot. Their funniest running-gag: greeting each other as characters in Broadway shows. "Vera!" said Brochu to Sheldon expansively. "Mother Burnside," countered Sheldon to Brochu, who bristled at the accuracy of that crack.

As usual, John's Pizzeria on West 44th Street sponsored the Broadway Backwards annual after-party. Because part of the restaurant had been committed to another event, there was a noticeable lack of glamour and paparazzi-popping. Although it is the largest pizzeria in the country and it was 98 percent press-free, the joint was as packed to the gills as ever.

The event brought in $345,000, breaking Broadway Backwards' own record. Cheers!