Lea Michele Receives an Early Birthday Celebration from Funny Girl Crew Ahead of Joining the Show

·3 min read
Lea Michele
Lea Michele

Ephie Aardema/Instagram Lea Michele

Lea Michele celebrated her birthday with major Broadway glee!

The actress, who turns 36 on Monday, was treated to a birthday song and cake onstage over the weekend at the August Wilson Theatre in New York City, as shown in a video posted by her Funny Girl understudy, Ephie Aardema.

In the clip, Michele claps and thanks the cast and crew gathered around to celebrate her, jumping up and down, smiling and taking a bow.

"Thank you so much!" Michele, who is set to step into the lead role of Fanny Brice starting Sept. 6, says at the end of the sweet gesture.

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RELATED: Lea Michele Recreates Behind-the-Scenes Glee Photo to Celebrate Funny Girl Broadway Run: "Dream Come True"

Michele will take over the iconic role — originated by Barbra Streisand — from current lead actress Julie Benko. Original star Beanie Feldstein departed the production July 31.

Her former Glee costar, Jane Lynch, originated the role of Mrs. Brice in the Broadway revival, but played her final performance Aug. 14. Actress Liz McCartney takes over the role through Sept. 4, with Tovah Feldshuh beginning performances alongside Michele on Sept. 6.

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In an interview with Playbill published earlier this month, Lynch, 62, said she is "thrilled" for Michele to take the stage as Fanny Brice — and that she was leaving the production earlier than announced due to a vacation.

"I have a vacation August 14th, and then I had just like five shows after that, and it's a six-hour flight, so I thought, 'Let's end it now,' " she told the publication. "It has nothing to do with not wanting to see Lea."

"I text with Lea. She and I are fine," she continued. "I love working with Julie. I loved working with Beanie. There's no drama here. None."

RELATED VIDEO: Lea Michele Will Join Broadway's Funny Girl as Fanny Brice After Beanie Feldstein's Early Exit

After Feldstein, 29, was announced last year to take the lead in the first Broadway revival of Funny Girl since the original premiered in 1964, she debuted in the role in March. The production had its highly anticipated opening night in April, but was met with mixed reviews and only received one nomination at the 75th Tony Awards.

Producers previously announced that Feldstein and Lynch would be leaving the show on Sept. 25. However, Feldstein announced last month that her last performance would be July 31 after the "production decided to take the show in a different direction," she wrote on Instagram.

The next day, producers announced that Michele would take over in the starring role in September.

Funny Girl — which features the Jule Styne and Bob Merrill classics "People," "I'm the Greatest Star" and "Don't Rain on My Parade," the latter of which Michele famously covered on Glee — includes huge tap numbers by Ayodele Casel and choreography by Ellenore Scott, a revised script by Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein and over 150 costumes designed by Tony-winning designer Susan Hilferty.