Hugh Jackman at the BAM Theater Gala


Among many other celebrities including Mario Batali, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Claire Danes and Hugh Dancy, Hugh Jackman enjoyed his evening at BAM’s annual theater gala on Thursday, March 10th. After a dinner at the Howard Gilman Opera House, the stars headed two and a half blocks to the Harvey Theatre for further celebrations. There, they were treated to a celebration of Geoffrey Rush in “The Diary of a Madman.” For more information, check out these excerpts below:

Jackman’s “The Boy from Oz” director Philip William McKinley will take over reins of Broadway’s expensive, troubled “Spider-Man.”

“Size is not a problem for Bill. He will rise to the occasion,” Jackman predicted, adding that it is one show he has yet to see.


There is an adage among actors: never work with children or animals — they inevitably steal the show. For theater publicists seeking to promote their productions, there should be an addendum: never seat a journalist next to Hugh Jackman.

At the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Spring Theater Gala in Fort Greene on Thursday night, there were many notable things: Guests as diverse as David Hyde Pierce and David M. Steiner, New York State’s education commissioner, were served on stage at the Howard Gilman Opera House, under a fanciful awning of paper and colored lights. But to the guests at Mr. Jackman’s end of a long banquet table — dowagers transformed into tweens at a Justin Bieber concert by his presence — the actor eclipsed the scene with the heat of a thousand suns.

Mr. Jackman withstood the nonstop and genuine-seeming fawning with grace. “I prayed for you,” said Mary Reilly, BAM’s director of artist services, of Mr. Jackman’s body-wrenching all-out performance in “The Boy From Oz,” for which he won a Tony Award in 2004. He may have needed it: “By the end, I had stress fractures in both of my feet,” he said.

“I spent all my time in buckets of ice.”

Mr. Jackman seemed to find the guileless awe refreshing. “It’s different than Hollywood,” he whispered, punctuating his point by scarfing down his asparagus appetizer and entree of sumac-roasted steak — with an un-L.A. chaser of Nocturnalist’s appetizer and plate of steak. (We weren’t hungry anyway.) “There’s a quail egg on it?” he asked, after having just forked one into his mouth, and moving on to inhale a second appetizer. “I hadn’t noticed.”