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Jane Lynch reacts to Lea Michele replacing Beanie Feldstein on Broadway’s Funny Girl

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Jane Lynch has responded to the news that Lea Michele will replace Beanie Feldstein as Fanny Brice on Broadway’s revival of Funny Girl.

It was recently confirmed that Michele will be making her debut in the production on 6 September, alongside Tovah Feldshuh, who will replace Lynch as Brice’s mother, Yentl.

On 10 July, Feldstein announced she would be departing the show on 31 July, nearly two months earlier than initially planned. She attributed the decision to the production’s decision “to take the show in a different direction”.

In a new interview with Deadline, Lynch, who starred alongside Michele on the musical series Glee, spoke about the 35-year-old joining the revival.

“We have been in touch about it,” she said. “You know, it was just a really strong idea to have Feldshuh and Lea premiere together. That’s the only reason [we won’t appear together].”

“I adore her,” Lynch continued. “She’s just going to take this show and make it her own.

“I’m so glad she’s getting the opportunity in real life to do the show and not just on Glee.”

Jane Lynch on ‘Only Murders in the Building’ (AP)
Jane Lynch on ‘Only Murders in the Building’ (AP)

During her time on Fox’s six-season series, Michele played the character of musical fan Rachel Berry, whose ultimate dream was to play Fanny on Broadway. In one episode, she performs the song “Don’t Rain on My Parade”.

Michele’s casting in Funny Girl, however, has been mired in controversy given allegations against her of bullying. Michele has been accused by several former co-stars of “bullying” behaviour.

Former Glee star Samantha Ware reacted to the news, stating that “Broadway upholds whiteness”.

Ware was one of the first people to speak out against Michele’s alleged behaviour. In 2020, Ware said that the actor had made her life a “living hell” and subjected her to “traumatic microaggressions”.

After failing to apologise in her initial statement, Michele later said that she “[apologised] for my behaviour and for any pain which I have caused”.

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