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Ghostlight Records and Two River Theater have announced the release of Be More Chill Karaoke (Original Cast Recording) to celebrate the Broadway-bound musical sensation, available today, Tuesday, January 22. The EP’s seven tracks – based on the show’s Original Cast Recording – include fan favorites “More Than Survive,” “I Love Play Rehearsal,” “The Squip Song,” “Two-Player Game,” “A Guy That I’d Kinda Be Into,” “Michael in the Bathroom,” and “The Pitiful Children.” Be More Chill features music and lyrics by Joe Iconis (NBC’s “Smash,” The Black SuitsBroadway Bounty Hunter) and a book by Joe Tracz (The Lightning Thief, Netflix’s “Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events”) based on the cult sensation novel by Ned Vizzini. Order the Karaoke EP here.

As Be More Chill prepares to launch on Broadway next month, visit bemorechillmusical.com/contest to enter the Be More Chill Karaoke Contest for a chance to perform live at the Lyceum Theatre on Broadway. Send a creative video of yourself singing “I Love Play Rehearsal,” “The Squip Song,” or “Michael in the Bathroom” – original songs from Be More Chill – using one of the Original Cast Recording karaoke tracks for a chance to win the ultimate cool prize. The grand prize winner will be flown to New York to perform their karaoke cover of a Be More Chill song in a real Broadway theatre in front of a real Broadway audience. Submissions close February 12.

Once all the submission are in, Be More Chill creators Joe Iconis and Joe Tracz will hand pick the top 20 finalists based on musical talent, personality and style, and creativity. Finalists will be announced on March 19, at which time fans can visitbemorechillmusical.com/contest to vote for their favorite video. Voting will close on April 2 at noon. The final winner will be notified by email and officially announced on April 5.

The winner and a guest will be flown to New York and awarded a once in a lifetime experience including a stay at the Night Hotels Times Square, a pair of tickets to see BE MORE CHILL on Broadway, and the opportunity to perform their karaoke rendition at the Lyceum Theatre on Broadway. Applicants must be 13 years of age or older and a resident of the US. Applicants under the age of 18 must have a parent’s or guardian’s consent to enter.

“From our first readings of Be More Chill , it was clear that these songs were striking a chord with audiences,” says Joe Iconis, the show’s composer and lyricist.  “The thing that has been most incredible to me has been watching groups of humans singing along to these show tunes which clearly mean so much to them. It feels only fitting that as our little-show-that-could bops its way to Broadway, we should celebrate with the biggest sing-along party ever! Be More Chill celebrates individuality and personality and all those things that make us different, so I can’t wait to hear our fans give their own distinct interpretations of these Be More Chill jams! I hope they all bring their own, weird, beautiful self to their covers and share it loudly for the world to hear.”

Following an acclaimed off-Broadway last this summer, Be More Chill will begin performances at Broadway’s Lyceum Theatre (149 West 45th Street) on Wednesday, February 13. The official opening night is Sunday evening, March 10. Tickets are now on sale at Telecharge.com.  Stephen Brackett (Buyer & Cellar) directs and Chase Brock (HBO’s “Last Week Tonight,” Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark) choreographs. For more information about Be More Chill, visit www.BeMoreChillMusical.com.

The Be More Chill Original Cast Recording, based on the 2015 Two River Theater production, is available on CD and vinyl, as well as all digital and streaming platforms.

The original cast album, produced by Kurt Deutsch, Joe Iconis and Charlie Rosen, was one of the driving forces that inspired a passionate community of BE MORE CHILL fans around the world, driving the musical to its New York debut production. Before ever premiering on a New York stage Be More Chill amassed an unprecedented following across various online platforms, with millions of fans from Brazil to Japan to New Jersey sharing fan art, streaming the album, and talking about the show. The cast recording, which has racked up over 200 million streams worldwide, entered the Billboard “Broadway Top Ten” chart in its 97th week of release and is one of the only shows to enter the top 10 prior to a New York run. Tumblr ranks BE MORE CHILL as the #2 most talked-about musical on their platform, following Hamilton.

What if popularity came in a pill? Would you take it, no questions asked? In Be More Chill, achieving that elusive “perfect life” is now possible thanks to some mysterious new technology-but it comes at a cost that’s not as easy to swallow. What could possibly go wrong? Blending the contemporary with retro sci-fi, this thrillingly exciting, comically subversive, and deeply felt new musical takes on the competing voices in all of our heads. And ultimately proves, there’s never been a better time in history to be yourself-especially if you’re a loser…geek…or whatever.

Be More Chill had its world premiere in an extended run at Two River Theater in Red Bank, NJ. The orchestrator and musical supervisor was Charlie Rosen and the musical director and copyist was Nathan Dame. The show is licensed by R&H Theatricals. 

The recording of Be More Chill features original cast members Jake Boyd (Jake), Gerard Canonico (Rich), Katlyn Carlson (Chloe), Will Connolly (Jeremy), Stephanie Hsu (Christine), Katie Ladner (Jenna Rolan), Lauren Marcus (Brooke), Eric William Morris (The Squip), George Salazar (Michael), and Paul Whitty (Jeremy’s Dad/Mr. Reyes/Scary Stockboy). The six-piece orchestra includes Nathan Dame (Conductor and Keyboard), Danny Jonokuchi (Theremin/Trumpet), Dan McMillan (Drums/Percussion), Josh Plotner (Vocoder/Reeds), Mike Rosengarten (Guitar), and Amanda Ruzza (Bass).

 

Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email: suzanna@t2conline.com

Broadway

The Glorious Corner

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G.H. Harding

KNIVES OUT AGAIN — (Via Deadline) The next installment in the Knives Out series has its title. Writer/director Rian Johnson announced on social media this morning that the film will be called Wake Up Dead Man. It was also confirmed that the film would come out sometime in 2025 and that production would be under way soon with Daniel Craig returning to star.

Johnson returns as the writer and director of the series and will also produce the pic with his partner Ram Bergman. Plot details are unknown and as of now Craig is the only talent involved.

The most recent pic, Glass Onion, bowed in 2022 with Craig returning as world famous detective Benoit Blanc. The film premiered on Netflix after the streamer made a record setting $450 million deal for the two sequels with this being the third in the series.

SHORT TAKES — The trailer for Beverley Hills Cop 4 is out. Here it is:

Harold Faltermeyer

The theme for the movie sounds like a cheap re-working of “Alex F” an electronic instrumental track by German musician Harold Faltermeyer …

The Wallows

The Wallows, who I’ve never heard of, kicked off the Today Show Summer Concert series. When interviewed, each of them said they used to watch the show before they went to school. My, I wonder how that made the hosts feel? Even Carson Daly, who’s no kid either, must have batted an eye. Interesting band. Nothing special I saw, but good luck to them …

David Krumholtz

SIGHTING: David (Numbers) Krumholtz at the Factory Bar Friday for Trivia Night … (Via Theatermania) Grammy

Stephanie Mills

Award winner Stephanie Mills will return to Broadway to play Hermes in the Tony Award-winning musical Hadestown. Her first performance will be July 2, coinciding with the start dates of Maia Reficco and Yola. Mills takes over from Jon Jon Briones, who plays his final performance June 30. Mills originated the role of Dorothy in the first Broadway production of The Wiz in 1975. Her last appearance on Broadway was for a special concert in 1989 … The Washington Post will go full AI. Check out this story: https://futurism.com/washington-post-pivot-ai

Tracker

… A short Memorial Day-vacay in East Hampton was great. Checked out Sakura and was introduced to CBS’ Tracker with Justin Hartley. Smartly done and directed by Ken Olin from Thirtysomething. Impressed for sure …

Billy Joel

The Long Island Musical Hall of Fame abruptly canceled their June 7 event, honoring Billy Joel at Tilles Center.  Performers at the event were to be Run-DMC; Debbie Gibson; and Felix Cavaliere.  Joel said a family event would prevent him from attending …

RIP producer

Al Ruddy

. He produced The Godfather and Million Dollar Baby. Check out Deadline’s obit: https://deadline.com/2024/05/al-ruddy-dead-godfather-million-dollar-baby-1235942541/

NAMES IN THE NEWS — Marsha Stern; Jane Berk; Randy Jones; James Edstrom; Chuck Scarborough; Bill Adler; Dan Zelinski; Bobby Shaw; Mike Greenly; Mark Bego; Roy Trakin; Crispin Cioe; Steve Walter; Steve Paul; Lou Reed; Foreigner; Bobby Watman; Bobby Orlando; Adriana Kaegi; Thomas Silverman; Seymour Stein; Barry and Marissa Zelman; Dan Zelinski; and ZIGGY!

Images on this page have been licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

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Broadway

Backstage with Richie Ridge Presents

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Drama Desk and OCC member Richie Ridge, of Broadway World’s Backstage with Richie Ridge, will moderate a discussion with Kelli O’Hara and Brian d’Arcy James, both Drama Desk nominees for Lead Performance in a Musical for Days of Wine and Roses, at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, May 29 at the SAG-AFTRA Foundation’s Robin Williams Center (247 West 54th St., opposite Studio 54). Drama Desk members are invited. The doors will open at 1:30 p.m., and attendance is first come, first served. Latecomers may not be admitted.

Based on the 1964 movie about a couple falling in love in 1950s New York and struggling to maintain a family in the face of alcohol addiction, Days of Wine and Roses, with music and lyrics by Adam Guettel and a book by Craig Lucas, opened at Studio 54 on Jan. 28, 2024. O’Hara and d’Arcy James are both Tony nominees as well.

SAG-AFTRA Foundation and BroadwayWorld have partnered for a filmed Conversations Q&A series to recognize and celebrate the vibrant theater community in New York City and the actors who aspire to have a career on the stage and screen.

If you would like to attend, please fill out the form here. Be sure to select the Non-member option.

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Broadway

Backstage with Richie Ridge Presents The Outsiders

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Richie Ridge, of Broadway World’s Backstage with Richie Ridge, will moderate adiscussion with stars of the new Drama Desk– and Tony-nominated musical The Outsiders at 2 p.m. on Friday, May 31, at the SAG-AFTRA Foundation’s Robin Williams Center (247 West 54th St., opposite Studio 54). Members of the Drama Desk are invited to attend. The doors will open at 1:30 p.m., and attendance is first come, first served. Latecomers may not be admitted.

Participants in the panel will be Drama Desk and Tony nominees director Danya Taymor and lead actor Brody Grant, along with Tony featured actor nominees Sky Lakota-Lynch and Joshua Boone. With music and lyrics by Justin Levine and a book by Levine and Adam Rapp, The Outsiders, is a nominee for both Drama Desk and Tony Awards for best musical, opened at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theater on April 11, 2024.

SAG-AFTRA Foundation and BroadwayWorld have partnered for a filmed Conversations Q&A series to recognize and celebrate the vibrant theater community in New York City and the actors who aspire to have a career on the stage and screen.

If you would like to attend, please fill out the form here. Be sure to select the Non-member option.

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Broadway

Ken Fallin’s Broadway: Richard M. Sherman Songwriter for Mary Poppins and Jungle Book Passes On

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Richard M. Sherman, was a nine-time Academy Award nominee along with his brother Robert. The Sherman Brothers wrote more than 200 songs for some 27 films and 24 television productions. Their film credits include Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, The Absent-Minded Professor, The Parent Trap, Summer Magic tv, The Sword in the Stone, That Darn Cat!, Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree, The Happiest Millionaire, The Aristocats, and Bedknobs and Broomsticks.

The won two Academy Awards for Mary Poppins, taking home the trophies for Best Score – Substantially Original and Best Original Song (for “Chim Chim Cher-ee”). They won three Grammy awards and received 24 gold and platinum albums and were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2005 and received the US National Medal of the Arts in 2008.

They also wrote the score on Broadway for Over Here.

The brothers were portrayed in the 2013 film Saving Mr. Banks, which told the story behind the making of Mary Poppins.

Sherman died of age-related illness at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Beverly Hills. His brother Robert died in 2012.

 

 

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The Outer Critics Circle (OCC) Awards And You Are There Part 2

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Yesterday we gave you part 1 of The Outer Critics Circle (OCC), awards ceremony held at the Bruno Walter Auditorium at Lincoln Center’s New York Public Library for The Performing Arts 111 Amsterdam Avenue, NYC).

In this part Steve Guttenberg gives the award to Outstanding Featured Performer in an Off-Broadway Play: Jay O. Sanders – Primary Trust


Outstanding Lead Performer in an Off-Broadway Musical:
 Andrew Durand  Dead Outlaw

Current President David Gordon introduced Andrea Martin who gave away the awards for Outstanding Direction of a Musical: Jessica Stone – Water for Elephants

A special award was given to Harry Haun longtime OCC member who served on the board as well.

Outstanding Choreography (Broadway or Off-Broadway):Justin Peck —Illinoise

And the tie for Outstanding Lead Performer in an Off-Broadway Play: William Jackson Harper, Primary Trust

Outstanding New Off-Broadway Play: Primary Trust

Outstanding New Off-Broadway Musical: Dead Outlaw

Kelechi Watson presented the awards for Outstanding Featured Performer in a Broadway Musical: Kecia Lewis  Hell’s Kitchen

Outstanding Direction of a Play: Daniel Aukin – Stereophonic

Outstanding Lead Performer in a Broadway Musical: Kelli O’Hara  Days of Wine and Roses


Outstanding New Broadway Play:
 Stereophonic

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Outstanding New Broadway Musical: Suffs

Founded during the 1949-50 Broadway season by respected theater journalist John Gassner, The Outer Critics Circle is an esteemed association with members affiliated with more than ninety newspapers, magazines, broadcast stations, and online news organizations, in America and abroad. Led by its current President David Gordon, the OCC Board of Directors also includes Vice President Richard Ridge, Recording Secretary Joseph Cervelli, Corresponding Secretary Patrick Hoffman, Treasurer David Roberts, Cynthia Allen, Harry Haun, Dan Rubins, Janice Simpson and Doug Strassler. Simon Saltzman is President Emeritus & Board Member (Non-nominating) and Stanley L. Cohen serves as Financial Consultant & Board Member (Non-nominating). Lauren Yarger serves as the Outer Critics Circle Awards ceremony executive producer.

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