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The Girl Next Door

Katie Holmes Ready to Hit the Stage

By Kristin Mascia

Katie Holmes's long-awaited Broadway debut is finally here – and Tom Cruise is by the side of his leading lady.

Previews for the revival of Arthur Miller's "All My Sons," in which Holmes stars with John Lithgow, Diane Wiest and Patrick Wilson, begin Thursday night at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre in New York City.

After arriving in town with their daughter Suri via helicopter on Tuesday, Cruise joined Holmes at her final rehearsal Wednesday, and the pair smiled for photographers as they exited the theater arm-in-arm.

Holmes's much-anticipated Broadway turn has been the talk of the town since May, when she signed on to join the production. In June at the Tony Awards, costar Lithgow told PEOPLE he was “looking forward to working with her,” and even offered some advice for making the transition from screen to stage. "She's a pro and I'd say to be herself. She's going to be wonderful."

Added Tony Award-winning Broadway vet Kristin Chenoweth: "I would recommend her just to stay [healthy] and get a lot of good sleep and drink lots of water. It takes so much energy to be on stage seven days a week, so she needs a good night's sleep everyday."

Splitting his time between L.A. and New York, Cruise has often been spotted taking care of Suri, 2, while Holmes has been at rehearsals.

Offstage, Holmes took advantage of the sights and sounds of summer in the city, hitting the park with Suri and enjoying date nights with Cruise. After a few weeks of preview performances, "All My Sons" makes its official premiere Oct. 16 – when the critics will weigh in.