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Theatre News: Michael Jackson, Johnny Deep and the Killer Hand, Mr Magoo, Soft Power, The Carney’s, More MJ Musical News

Theatre News: Michael Jackson, Johnny Deep and the Killer Hand, Mr Magoo, Soft Power, The Carney’s, More MJ Musical News

No it is not April Fool’s day Johnny Depp is producing a musical about the life of Michael Jackson that will be told from the perspective of the late singer’s famous sequin glove. Playwright Julien Nitzberg wrote For the Love of a Glove: An Unauthorised Musical Fable About the Life of Michael Jackson, As Told By His Glove. The glove, is actually an alien from outer space and feeds on virgin boy blood. For the Love of a Glove opens on 25 January at the Carl Sagan and Ann Druyan theatre in Los Angeles.

For the Love of a Glove poster
 For the Love of a Glove poster

The Actors Fund in association with Dreamworks Theatricals, Classic Media and Margaret Styne will present a one-night only concert presentation of the holiday classic Mr. Magoo’s Christmas Carol on Monday, December 16 at 7:30 p.m. at the Gerald W. Lynch Theater at John Jay College (524 W. 59th St.). The evening will be directed by Carl Andress with choreography by Nathan Peck, based on original choreography by Marcos Santana. Grammy Award® and Emmy Award® winner John McDaniel has written new orchestrations for the score and will serve at the evening’s music director.

Proceeds from the evening will benefit the programs and services of The Actors Fund, the national human services organization that helps everyone in performing arts and entertainment.

The concert will star Gavin Lee as “Mr. Magoo/Ebenezer Scrooge”, Sierra Boggess as “Belle”, Claybourne Elder as “Bob Crachit”, Kyle Selig as “Young Ebenezer,”  Matthew Scott as “Fred”, Michael Potts as “Jacob Marley”, Don Darryl Rivera as “the Ghost of Christmas Past”, Frederic Odgaard as “the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come”, Klea Blackhurst as “the Charwoman”, Jennifer Cody as “the Laundress”, Jeff Blumenkrantz as “the Undertaker”, Stephen DeRosa as “The Old Man,” and Jeff Hiller as “The Director”. Additional casting will be annouced soon. 

Mr. Magoo’s Christmas Carol features a score by composer Jule Styne and lyricist Bob Merrill. The musical is a delightful retelling of the Dickens classic, featuring the comically myopic cartoon character Quincy Magoo. Originally aired in December 1962, “Mr. Magoo’s Christmas Carol” was the first animated holiday special ever produced specifically for television.

This special concert will be an encore presentation by The Actors Fund.  They first presented the concert production, adapted for the stage by Tim Pinckney, on December 14, 2014, also as a benefit led by Andress and McDaniel. Several of the actors who took part in that concert will be reprising their roles for this performance.

For tickets, call 917.281.5933 or visit actorsfund.org/magoo

Conrad Ricamora and Alyse Alan Louis iPhoto by Craig Schwartz

Ghostlight records will record the new musical Soft Power, The Public Theater. The original cast album to be released Spring 2020. Soft Power features play and lyrics by Tony Award winner David Henry Hwang and music and additional lyrics by Tony Award winner Jeanine Tesori. A co-commission and co-production with Center Theatre Group. The album will be produced by Matt Stine.

The complete cast of Soft Power includes Billy Bustamante (Xuē Xíng Standby), Jon Hoche (Chief Justice/Hālǐ Àohālā/Ensemble), Kendyl Ito (Jīng/Prof. Lǐ Bìyù/Ensemble), Francis Jue (DHH), Austin Ku (Bobby Bob/Jū Míng), Raymond J. Lee (Randy Ray/Yáo Tuō/Veep/Ensemble), Alyse Alan Louis (Zoe/Hillary), Jaygee Macapugay (Betsy/Lóng Lín Kūn/Ensemble), Daniel May (Ensemble), Paul HeeSang Miller (Ensemble), Kristen Faith Oei (Ensemble), Geena Quintos (Airport Greeter/Ensemble), Conrad Ricamora (Xuē Xíng), Trevor Salter (Ensemble), Kyra Smith (Ensemble), Emily Stillings (Swing), Emily Trumble (Zoe/Hillary Standby), and John Yi (Swing).

Soft Power features orchestrations by Danny Troob; music direction and supervision by Chris Fenwick; dance arrangements by John Clancy; music contracting by Antoine Silverman; and additional orchestrations by Larry Hochman and John Clancy.

Paris, Reeve and Zane Carney

Reeve Carney, Zane Carney and Paris Carney bring “The Carney Family Christmas Extravaganza” to The green Room 42 on Sunday, December 22 at 9:30 PM. The family has been making music together their entire lives and will come together in harmony again for one night only to perform holiday favorites and their original songs, following a sold out show this past summer.

In addition, Zane will be joined by Evan Rachel Wood for their show Evan + Zane: Christmas on Monday, December 16 at 9:30 PM. Reeve will resume his long-term residency at the club on Sunday, February 2 at 9:30 PM.

Ephraim Sykes 

Producers Lia Vollack and The Michael Jackson Estate announced today that Tony Award® nominee Ephraim Sykes has been cast to star as Michael Jackson in the upcoming Broadway World Premiere of MJ The Musical. MJ will begin preview performances on Monday, July 6, 2020, at the Neil Simon Theatre.  Opening night is set for Thursday evening, August 13, 2020, at 6:30 p.m. 

Mr. Sykes is currently on Broadway in the smash hit musical Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of The Temptations.

MJ The Musical will feature a book by two-time Pulitzer Prize® winner Lynn Nottage and a score made up of some of the best-loved, top-selling songs in recording history. Tony Award winner Christopher Wheeldon will direct and choreograph. 

Tickets for MJ The Musical will go on sale on January 15, 2020, at 10 a.m. To sign-up for priority ticket access, go to MJTheMusical.com.

Broadway

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

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