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The National Alliance for Musical Theatre 46th Minute concert on October 18th at 6:30 pm directed by Branden Huldeen and produced for NAMT by Ciera Iveson with Karin Nilo was a wonderful way to see how the shows from prior seasons have been developed. The most interesting piece of the whole night was that the Fredericia Theatre, in Denmark has been co-producing and nurturing three of the shows presented.

First up was Beatsville by Glenn Slater and Wendy Wilf from the 2008 season. Beatsville had its World Premiere at Asolo Rep in a co-production with The 5th Avenue Theatre and additional development at Rhinebeck Writers Retreat and NYU Steinhardt. With smooth jazz and cool bohemians and beatniks, Beatsville showed a bebop side to musical theatre.

My Heart Is The Drum by Jennie Redling, Phillip Palmer and Stacey Luftig was presented in 2013. I was present in 2016 when they won the Kleban Prize and in 2017 as they won the BMI Jerry Bock Award. In addition they had their World Premiere at Village Theatre and additional development at Kent State University and Goodspeed Musicals Johnny Mercer Writers Colony. The writers received the Fred Ebb Award for their music and lyrics. I expect to see this coming-of-age musical as a Disney cartoon.

Triangle by Thomas Mizer and Curtis Moore had its premiere at the 2012 NAMT. Since then they have had their world premiere at TheatreWorks Silicon Valley and additional development at Goodspeed Musicals Johnny Mercer Writers Colony and Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma. The writers received the 2016 Fred Ebb Award. Starring Adam Halpin (Broadway:  Dear Evan Hansen), Zach Prince (Broadway: Honeymoon in Vegas) and Megan McGinnis(Broadway: Side Show, Les Mis), Triangle tells two love stories, set in the same New York City building, a hundred years apart. The site for the Triangle Shirt Factory fire weaves lives together across the century, long-buried secrets are uncovered and ghosts of the past begin to influence the future. After seeing this presentation, I can tell you I want to see this show. Since the  world premiere at TheatreWorks Silicon Valley Michael Arden and Sara Ramirez have championed this piece.

Big Red Sun by Georgia Stitt and John Jiler from 2012 has been produced at the Hour Theatre Company, York Theatre and 11University of Nebraska. I have seen readings of this show at Feinstein’s/ 54 Below.

Legendale by Andrea Daly and Jeff Bienstock made it’s mark in 2015 and had their world premiere at Fredericia Teater in Denmark in March 2017and its American Premiere at Human Race Theatre Co. in Fall 2017. Video games come to life as dreams of victory are smashed when Andy’s avatar is a lowly milkmaid, whose sole skill is crafting cheese. Andy and his avatar must both learn how to summon their inner warriors.

The 2014 entree The Noteworthy Life of Award Barnes by Christopher Dimond and Michael Kooman, was presented at Goodspeed Musicals’ Festival of New Musicals. Howard Barnes is average, if emotionally repressed, man in his early thirties, when he wakes up to discover that his life has become a musical. Howard discovers that he must let go of the past and open himself up to the possibility of love. In doing so, he learns to embrace the music.

My favorite piece of the night was the 2011, the 1920’s “Mean Girls” musical Bernice Bobs Her Hair  by Adam Gwon and Julia Jordan. This show was given a developmental production at the Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma in 2015. Based on the classic short story of the same name by F. Scott Fitzgerald, character assassination is the entertainment in town.

Last but not least was the heavy rock fused score of Lizzie by Steven Cheslik-DeMeyer, Alan Stevens Hewitt and Tim Maner. Since 2010 the show has gained a cult following playing all over the world including Playhouse Square/Baldwin Wallace University, TUTS Underground, Portland Center Stage and Fredericia Theatre in Denmark. Eden Espinosa (Broadway: Wicked), showed why she is revered as a musical theatre tour de force as she blew the audience away with her rendition of “Sweet Little Sister”

 

The 46th Minute is sponsored by Goodspeed Musicals (Lead Sponsor), Fredericia Theater and New Works Development Centre Uterus and McCoy Rigby Entertainment with La Mirada Theatre.

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

Events

Inside the Roku Holiday Bash to Celebrate a Season of Giving

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Talk about a perfect way to celebrate the holidays!

Roku’s holiday event last night dazzled the tastemakers and influencers of New York City.

Guests were thrilled to enjoy the splendid soiree that showcased Roku’s full ecosystem of products, leading operating system, and newly launched All Things Food and All Things Home destinations.

Roku is a one-stop-shop for all of your gift giving needs with a range of products to choose from no matter your budget, including TVs, streaming players, audio devices, and smart home products.

Be sure to check out Roku’s Holiday Promotions: 

  • Now through 12/02: $15 off Express 4K+, $20 off RSS 4K
  • Now through 12/09: $30 off Roku Ultra
  • 12/03 through 12/30: $5 off Express, $10 off Express 4K+, $10 off RSS 4K
  • 12/17 through 12/30: $30 off Roku Streambar

Happy Holidays!

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Book Reviews

The Glorious Corner

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G.H. Harding

TAP 2 — (Via Rock Cellar) Doubling down after a May 2022 report that indicated everything was a go for a sequel to 1984’s classic comedy/music industry satire This Is Spinal Tap, filmmaker Rob Reiner has now confirmed that plans are taking shape in a big way.

Rob Reiner

Not only is the sequel on tap (pun intended) to begin filming in early 2024, but Reiner recently told comedian/podcast host Richard Herring that “everybody’s back” for the sequel. This no doubt refers to principal cast members Michael McKean, Harry Shearer and Christopher Guest, though Tony Hendra (who portrayed the band’s manager, Ian Faith, passed away in 2021).

The U.K.’s Guardian notes that the plot will reportedly center on Faith’s death, after which his widow inherits a contract that requires the band to do one last concert. Reiner is also due to return in the character of film-maker Marty DiBergi, a figure supposedly based on Martin Scorsese, who had directed celebrated music documentary The Last Waltz in 1976.

What’s more, Reiner also spilled the beans that appearances from Sirs Paul McCartney and Elton John and Garth Brooks are in the works too, among what one must assume will be a million other amusing cameos. After all, a film as beloved and influential as the original This Is Spinal Tap counts pretty much every living musician as a fan (give or take), so you know the sequel will hold nothing back when it comes to the entertainment factor.

In the podcast, Reiner also talked about This Is Spinal Tap’s remarkable afterlife, culminating in selection for the National Film Registry in 2002, after its initially unfavourable reception on its first release. “To wind up in the National Film Registry, that’s bizarre,” Reiner said. “We previewed it in a theatre in Dallas, Texas, and the people didn’t know what the heck they were looking at. They came up to me afterwards and said, ‘I don’t understand, why would you make a movie about a band that no one has ever heard of, and they are so bad? Why would you ever do that? Why don’t you make a movie about the Beatles or the Rolling Stones?’ I would say, ‘It’s satire,’ and I tried to explain. But over the years people got it, and started to like it.”

Personally, I found the 1984 original movie just hilarious. Aside from a great send-up of the music biz, the cameos were just fascinating: Paul Shaffer as PR-man Artie Fufkin; Dana Carvey and Billy Crystal as ‘mime’ waiters; Fred Willard; Anjelica Houston; Russ Kunkel; Danny Kortchmar and Fran Drescher as promo-gal Bobbi Fleckman … all just inspired.

Reiner’s on a roll – his Albert Brooks doc Defending My Life is sensational. A must-see.

Maybe an update of The Monkees’ HEAD next?

SHORT TAKES — Mark Bego’s Joe Cocker tome hit #4 on theAmazon charts this week. Here’s a great review from Goldmine on the book by their Lee Zimmerman: https://l.messenger.com/l.php?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.goldminemag.com%2Freviews%2Fjoe-cocker-book-shines-light-on-unfortunate-undercurrents-of-a-stars-career&h=AT2zaG2QKuxuHdpJO1nPHKaiO7IWkbAHCBRAeq3m4-J45axSc_wBott7ABve8Wcd7GpQC13gybDWb2Hale6D809pTdtqqmpDoxC4u6FLA7SNNJ2jHbVKKpSaH1kxX4Ide1AyXDJXSZL2idNWvOch4A

 … Micky Dolenz sang “Silly Love Songs” at Monday’s Troubadour benefit for Denny Laine and our spy said he really rocked it. Maybe a Dolenz Sings McCartney album is next? … So, Merriam-Webster’s word of the year is authentic? Interesting choice for sure …

Pablo Guzman

Writer and reporter Pablo Guzman passed this last weekend. An original member of The Young Lords, Guzman was a fierce fighter and brilliant writer. On Fox 5/Good Day NY for decades, he most recently was a reporter at WCBS. Here’s the Daily News take: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-12799071/Legendary-NYC-news-anchor-Pablo-Guzman-dies-aged-73-Big-Apple-veteran-reporter-dubbed-son-Bronx-founded-Puerto-Rican-activist-group-Young-Lords-journalist.html  …

Freda Payne, Mark Bego

And it’s official, the NY-launch for the Mark Bego Joe Cocker book will be Tuesday, January 9 at Steve Walter’s Cutting Room.

NAMES IN THE NEWS — Sara Gore; Tom & Lisa Cuddy; Daryl Estrea; Tony King; Ace Shortly; Kjersti and Jeremy Long; Debbie Gibson; Van Dean; Liz Skollar; Maude Adams; Robert Vaughn; Steve McQueen; Zach Martin; Coati Mundi; Avery Sharp; Steve Walter; Gary Gershoff; Jane Blunkell; Kimberly Cornell; Paul Iorio; Lee Jeske; MArt Ostrow; Peter Shendell; Sharon White; and ZIGGY!

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Events

Countdown to Christmas: A Sweet Treat For Christmas and Chunakah

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24 days to go! Every year people panic to find the perfect gift. We at T2C have been collecting idea’s all year long to bring you the perfect gift guide at all price levels. When you’re at the end of your rope trying to find the perfect Christmas present this year, come to this guide for some great suggestions.

I am starting first with Chanukah which starts December 7th. Here are great little surprises and treats. First up are these festive Chocolate Dreidels ($14) are  handmade with the finest chocolate, and filled with milk chocolate gold-foiled Gelt coins for a surprise inside that never disappoints. They make a great addition at any Chanukah celebration everyone will love! Each Dreidel contains 3 coins. Gluten Free. Kosher Certified.

Then there are the adorable Menorah Pops. At $4.95 its a sin not to indulge.

 

 

Menorah Pops $4.95

Their unique selection of Chocolate Gift Boxes, Towers and Gift Baskets stand out among New York’s discerning chocolate enthusiasts. We loved the box of 30 Chocolate Mini Presents at $25 these bite-sized solid premium milk chocolates wrapped in Italian foil are perfect for filling stockings or party favors. Gluten Free. Kosher Certified.

 Li-Lac Chocolates are fresh, gourmet chocolate hand-crafted in small batches for exceptional quality and superior taste. They also come in dairy free, sugar free and Kosher certified making them perfect for the family. These chocolates are creamy, tasty and so delightfully sinful.

Handmade in Brooklyn, not only are you supporting a local business but freshness is guaranteed.

Li Lac Chocolates are now my go to chocolate place for gifts.

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Events

Ziploc and Milk Bar Host Holiday Mixer

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It was the holiday mixer that hit all the sweet notes.

Milk Bar founder Christina Tosi and Ziploc hosted a fun interactive holiday party at the New York City Milk Bar flagship location on November 29. Attendees at the special affair got to hear Christina’s tips and tricks for the holiday season, as well as see Ziploc’s latest innovation, the Stay Open Design bags.

“Ziploc bags have been a favorite tool of mine since I started baking because they are so versatile and easy to use. From rolling out and freezing dough to ensuring my baked goods always stays fresh, there’s no shortage of ways that I use Ziploc® at home and in our bakeries,” she said. “The new Ziploc® Stay Open Design bags help give me an extra set of hands in the kitchen. As soon as I tried them, I was immediately reminded of mixing puppy chow in a Ziploc® bag as a child, and I knew this would be another perfect collaboration.”

Teaming up for the release the bakery’s first-ever, limited-edition take on “puppy chow” dessert – Ziploc x Milk Bar Holiday Mix – is a perfect way to start December. Perfect for festive gatherings, hosting gifts, stocking stuffers, family road trips and long sessions on the couch watching holiday movies, the offering features popular holiday flavors, including corn square cereal, white chocolate, cookie butter, sprinkles, and sugar cookie pieces.

Each bag of the Ziploc® x Milk Bar Holiday Mix comes pre-packaged in a quart-size Ziploc® Stay Open Design storage bag. Ziploc®‘s latest innovation helps ensure the contents will stay fresh and easily snackable thanks to a cuffed opening and patented stand up bottom that keeps it upright and open for filling and sharing with confidence. For the month of December, pick up a bag at the New York City, Washington D.C. and Los Angeles Milk Bar stores for just $7, plus tax, while supplies last.

And, for anyone in NYC, starting December 1, you can also book the perfect holiday activity, a build-your-own holiday mix-making experience! Attendees will learn Christina Tosi’s tips and tricks with the Milk Bar expert bakers and walk away with a gallon-size bag of holiday mix gifting for their own enjoyment.

For those not located near a Milk Bar store, don’t worry! Milk Bar and Ziploc® are sharing the exclusive recipe for free on both of their websites – a wonderful opportunity for a festive home activity with friends and family. Ziploc® also created a one-stop shop, to easily find all the ingredients needed at Amazon, Target or Walmart, including Ziploc® Stay Open Design bags that allow for easily folding, filling, scooping and snacking.

 

 

 

Photos by AP for Ziploc®

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Events

Avengers Tower Sets Meet And Greet With Signing

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C. B. Cebulski, Editor-in-Chief of Marvel Comics, and The LEGO Group Senior Graphic Designer Mark Tranter will be at the Fifth Ave LEGO Store this Friday, December 1st from 5pm-6pm signing the Avengers Tower set—the most iconic building in the Avengers Universe, with 5,201 pieces and an all-star cast of 31 figures.

The Avengers Tower, formerly known as Stark Tower, was a high-rise building complex located in Manhattan. Constructed by Tony Stark, the tower was powered by an Arc Reactor that made it capable of running itself for over a year. The top ten floors housed the research and development initiatives.

Following the dissolution of S.H.I.E.L.D., Stark Tower became the main headquarters of the Avengers. However, after the Ultron Offensive, Stark refurbished a Stark Industries warehouse upstate into the Avengers Compound to use as their primary base while Avengers Tower was repurposed for Stark Industries’ use. In the aftermath of the Avengers Civil War, Stark sold the tower and moved all of its equipment to the Avengers Compound.

By 2024, the tower, under its new ownership, had gone through extensive construction and renovation.

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