With Rob McClure, who plays Daniel, sitting next to her onstage, Miranda plays a confessional piano ballad, called “Let Go,” about her unfulfilling marriage. That spotlight moment supplants a less sympathetic number, “I’m Done,” which was cut after the 2019 Seattle tryout. Reviews for that production were mixed, though McClure’s performance was roundly praised.
To better contextualize the man-in-a-dress schtick, the costume designer Catherine Zuber helped create the contrasting character of Andre, Daniel’s gender nonconforming brother-in-law (played by J. Harrison Ghee, who took over Billy Porter’s role in “Kinky Boots”).
Andre wears flowy caftans as fashion rather than a joke. And he saves the day by distracting a court-appointed social worker who shows up at Daniel’s ramshackle apartment.
McClure, meanwhile, changes in and out of his Doubtfire costume and winds up with a pie in his face, reprising an iconic image from the film. “This is all going to end badly. You do know that, right?” Andre deadpans after the ordeal.
Championing families and fatherhood is what drew the Kirkpatricks to the “Doubtfire” story.
Their first Broadway musical, the 2015 show “Something Rotten!,” about an Elizabethan theater troupe struggling to compete with Shakespeare’s Globe, was completely original.
They had hoped their second would be too, but McCollum persuaded them to choose from a library of 20th Century Fox films he’d been hired to work on. The team settled on “Mrs. Doubtfire” because “we could relate to this story of a dad who would do anything to be with his kids,” Karey said. (Collectively, the three writers and their producer are fathers to 10 children.)
The Kirkpatricks’ own father was a Southern Baptist music minister later called to the pulpit himself. He moved the family from Alexandria, La. to Baton Rouge to lead a nondenominational church.