Theatre News: The Music Man, MJ, Speakeasy – Times Square, Waiting For Gadot and The Alchemist
Producers Barry Diller, David Geffen, and Kate Horton announced today the complete cast for the hugely anticipated revival of Meredith Willson’s The Music Man. Starring two-time Tony Award®, Grammy Award®, and Emmy Award®-winning star Hugh Jackman as Professor Harold Hill, and also starring two-time Tony Award winner Sutton Foster as Marian Paroo, preview performances of The Music Man are set to begin on Monday, December 20, 2021, with Opening Night scheduled for Thursday, February 10, 2022 at the Winter Garden Theatre (1634 Broadway).
Jerry Zaks commented, ““The Music Man is a valentine to America, a story about two people who can’t help but fall in love with each other. We have assembled the kind of irresistible cast that our audiences would, similarly, fall hopelessly and helplessly in love with night after night. I feel so lucky to preside over this remarkable group of performers.”
The production, directed by four-time Tony Award winner Jerry Zaks, with choreography by Tony Award winner Warren Carlyle, will also star, as previously announced, Tony Award winner Shuler Hensley as Marcellus Washburn, Tony Award winner Jefferson Mays as Mayor Shinn, Tony Award winner Jayne Houdyshell as Mrs. Shinn, and Tony Award winner Marie Mullen as Mrs. Paroo. Joining the principal cast are Remy Auberjonois as Charlie Cowell, Gino Cosculluela as Tommy Djilas, and Emma Crow as Zaneeta Shinn. Joining the cast are Benjamin Pajak as Winthrop, Kayla Teruel as Amaryllis, Garrett Long as Ethel Toffelmier, Linda Mugleston as Alma Hix, Jessica Sheridan as Maud Dunlop, Rema Webb as Mrs. Squires, Phillip Boykin as Olin Britt, Eddie Korbich as Jacey Squires, Daniel Torres as Ewart Dunlop, Nicholas Ward as Oliver Hix, and Nick Alvino, Jordan Beall, Ronnie S. Bowman Jr., Maria Briggs, Audrey Cardwell, JT Church, Max Clayton, Kammie Crum, Aydin Eyikan, Carlee Flanagan, Ethen Green-Younger, Emily Hoder, Curtis Holland, Eloise Kropp, Ethan Lafazan, Kayla LaVine, Andrew Minard, Sean Montgomery, Tanner Quirk, Lance Roberts, Daniel Patrick Russell, Ann Sanders, Sherisse Springer, Mitchell Tobin, Kathy Voytko, Branch Woodman, and Ryan Worsing rounding out the Ensemble.
One of the most universally cherished treasures of the American musical theater, The Music Man was an instant smash hit when it premiered on Broadway on December 19, 1957. It went on to win five Tony Awards, including the prize for Best Musical, and ran for 1,375 performances. The original cast album held the number one position on the Billboard charts and stayed on the album charts for 245 weeks. The recording won the first-ever Grammy Award for Best Original Cast Album. The Smithsonian Institution ranks The Music Man as one of the “great glories of American popular culture.”
The Music Man reunites the creative team of the Tony Award-winning and record-breaking revival of Hello, Dolly! starring Bette Midler, including (in addition to Zaks and Carlyle), four-time Tony Award winner Santo Loquasto (Scenic & Costume Design), Tony Award winner Scott Lehrer (Sound Design), David Chase (Vocal and Dance Arrangements), and Luc Verschueren for Campbell Young and Associates (Hair, Wigs, & Makeup). Tony Award winner Jonathan Tunick will create Orchestrations, and Patrick Vaccariello and five-time Tony Award winner Brian MacDevitt join the team as The Music Man’s Musical Director and Lighting Designer, respectively.
Producers Lia Vollack Productions and The Michael Jackson Estate, announced today that Walter Russell III from Harlem, New York, and Christian Wilson from Norfolk, Virginia, will alternate in the role of “Little Michael.” Also announced was Devin Trey Campbell from Bronx, New York, who will play the role of “Little Marlon” in the highly anticipated new musical, MJ. Inspired by the life and art of Michael Jackson, MJ will begin performances on Broadway on December 6, 2021, with an opening night set for Tuesday, February 1, 2022, at the newly refurbished Neil Simon Theatre (250 W 52nd Street).
MJ features 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.
Casting is by The Telsey Office, Rachel Hoffman.
Producer / creator Holly-Anne Devlin and Bond 45 (221 W 46th Street) announced today that Speakeasy – Times Square, an all-in-one immersive mixology experience that combines the worlds of burlesque, cirque, illusionists, and musical theater with a decadent cocktail, dining, and nightclub experience, will return by popular demand after a sold-out summer engagement. Speakeasy will resume performances on Friday, November 12, 2021 at 8 PM. Tickets are now on sale.
Step into Madam Lulu’s sizzling Storyville Speakeasy, a world of magic and mixology where the speakeasy sirens rule the night and celebration is not only encouraged but expected. An unforgettable night of electrifying performances, five finely crafted cocktails and a delicious appetizer from the world class culinary team at Bond 45, Speakeasy is directed by Holly-Anne Devlin, with musical direction by Dan Garmon, costume designs by Tristan Raines, lighting design by Joe Beumer, video and projection designs by Joey Moro, sound design by Walter Trarbach, stage management by Franny Fernandez, along with Josh Roberts on Drums and Tony Glausi on trumpet.
Speakeasy features the top cirque, burlesque, and theatrical performers in the world. Joining the company are Broadway veteran Kristin Yancy (The Cher Show, Summer) as Bessie Bourbon; three-time Burlesque Hall of Fame winner, LouLou D’vil; gravity defying acrobatic duo, Bassam Kubba and Mendel Roman; nightlife queen, Melike Konur; pole & pointe artist, Làszlò Major; international burlesque sensation, Dirty Martini; striptease artist, Mike Pugliese; renown contortionist, Allison Schieler; and fire and cirque artist, Syrena; The cast will also feature returning favorites, including Broadway and Off-Broadway favorites Joey Taranto (Kinky Boots); Sarah Meahl (Waitress) as Imogen; Lauren Mary Moore (Mamma Mia!) as Fleur de Lis; Megan Campbell (Chicago) as Estee; dance star, Alec Varcas (Aladdin); tap dancing sensation, Omar Edwards (Bring in Da Noise); and Oscar at the Crown star, Jada Temple as the mistress of ceremonies, Madam Lulu; along with internationally acclaimed burlesque artists, Tansy Burlesque, Audrey Love, Miss Miranda, and Peekaboo Pointe; with vogue dancer, Karma Stylez; “America’s Got Talent” contortionist, Aryn; and the brilliant pole artist and opera singer, Opera Gaga. Surprise special guest stars from Broadway will also make appearances throughout the run.
Performances of Speakeasy begin Friday, November 12, 2021 and play Friday and Saturday evenings at 8 PM with additional performances on Wednesday, November 24; Sunday, December 19; Monday, December 20; Tuesday, December 21; and Wednesday, December 22. Tickets start at $85 on TodayTix and include a sinful snack and five decadent signature cocktails designed by the master mixologists of Fireman Hospitality Group. Dining packages are available before and after the show to complete the supper club experience.
The Congress for Jewish Culture has been commissioned to present director Moshe Yassur’s critically acclaimed 2013 Off-Broadway Yiddish language staging of Waiting For Gadot at the prestigious Royal Dramatic Theatre in Stockholm, Sweden next month. Shane Baker’s landmark Yiddish translation of Samuel Beckett’s first ever Yiddish language production to appear at Stockholm’s Royal Dramatic Theatre. The show stars Michael Wex as Estragon and Shane Baker as Vladimir, along with Allen Lewis Rickman, Luzer Twersky and Nicholas Jenkins. For more information, visit www.dramaten.se/en/repertoire/waiting-for-godot. Founded in 1948, the Congress for Jewish Culture is a secular organization based in New York City dedicated to its longstanding commitment to enriching Yiddish culture worldwide. This spring, the Congress will present the Off-Broadway premiere of the long-running comedy smash The Essence, which has been playing to sellout crowds for over a decade throughout the Northeast and Europe.
RED BULL THEATER (Jesse Berger, Founder and Artistic Director | Jim Bredeson, Managing Director) cordially invites you to the World Premiere of a brand new adaptation of Ben Jonson’s classic comedy, The Alchemist, adapted by Jeffrey Hatcher and directed by Jesse Berger, the team that created the hit comedy The Government Inspector.
Featured in the cast will be Nathan Christopher (Red Bull debut); Stephen DeRosa (Red Bull: The Government Inspector; Broadway: Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus, The Nance, Into the Woods, The Man Who Came to Dinner); Carson Elrod (Bway: Peter and The Starcatcher, Reckless, Noises Off; Off-Bway: The Tempest, Measure for Measure, All’s Well That Ends Well – NYSF; The Liar, The Heir Apparent – CSC); Manoel Felciano (Red Bull: The Changeling; Bway: To Kill a Mockingbird, Amélie, Sweeney Todd – Tony nomination); Teresa Avia Lim (Bway: Junk – Lincoln Center Theater; Off-Bway: Caesar and Cleopatra – GTG, The Taming of the Shrew – Public Theater); Jacob Ming-Trent (Falstaff in Shakespeare in the Park’s Merry Wives, Lortel Award winner – Father Comes Home From the Wars…, Panda in HBO’s “Watchmen”); Louis Mustillo (“Mike & Molly,” Bartenders – OCC nomination Best Solo Performance); Reg Rogers (Bway: Tootsie, The Royal Family – OCC nominations; The Iceman Cometh, Present Laughter, The Big Knifeand Holiday – Tony and Drama Desk nominations. The Dazzle – OBIE and Lucille Lortel Awards); Jennifer Sánchez (Bway: Pretty Woman, On Your Feet, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown); and Allen Tedder (Bway: To Kill a Mockingbird, King Lear – Shakespeare in the Park).
Performances will be at New World Stages (340 West 50th Street) for a limited Off-Broadway engagement, through December 19th only. Opening Night is set for Sunday November 21st.
Theatre News: Bob Fosse’s Dancin’, Parade, The Shubert Organization and Millennials Are Killing Musicals,
Tovah Feldshuh, Huma Abedin, Hillary Clinton at Opening Night of Bob Fosse’s DANCIN’. Photo by Emilio Madrid
The curtain was raised last night at The Music Box Theatre (239 West 45th Street) as Bob Fosse’s Dancin’, the American showbusiness legend’s landmark musical tribute to the artform that defined his life, opened on Broadway 45 years after the original smash-hit production premiered. The production’s direction and musical staging is by Tony Award-winner Wayne Cilento, one of the stars of the original Broadway production, and is produced in cooperation with Nicole Fosse.
In attendance on opening night were Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton, Nicole Fosse; original A Chorus Line cast members Baayork Lee, Donna McKechnie, Priscilla Lopez; Chita Rivera; Erich Bergen; Jordan E. Cooper; Tovah Feldshuh; J. Harrison Ghee; Jane Krakowski; Adam Lambert; Ralph Macchio; Abby Lee Miller; Audra McDonald; Casey Nicholaw; Justin Peck; Tiler Peck; Bernadette Peters; Tonya Pinkins; Tony Roberts; David Rockwell; Krysta Rodriguez; Christopher Sieber; Jennifer Simard; Will Swenson and more.
Dancin’is Fosse’s full-throated, full-bodied celebration of dancers and dancing. Utterly reimagined for the 21st century, this Dancin’brims with a level of warmth, emotion, and color seldom seen in modern interpretations of Fosse’s influential style and features some of his most inventive and rarely performed choreography. With New York’s hottest cast performing wall-to-wall dance, including Fosse classics such as “Mr. Bojangles,” and “Sing Sing Sing.” Dancin’ delivers the quintessential Broadway experience for Fosse fans and first-timers alike. You think you’ve seen dancing, but you’ve never seen Dancin’like this.
The cast, consisting of some of the best of Broadway’s elite dancers includes Ioana Alfonso (Hometown: Miami via DR/PR), Yeman Brown (Hometown: Tallahassee, FL), Peter John Chursin (Hometown: San Francisco, CA), Dylis Croman (Hometown: Dallas, TX), Jovan Dansberry (Hometown: St. Louis, MO), Karli Dinardo (Hometown: Melbourne, Australia), Tony d’Alelio (Hometown: Roanoke, VA), Aydin Eyikan (Hometown: Fairfield, CT), Pedro Garza (Hometown: Abilene, Texas), Jacob Guzman (Hometown: Brockton, MA), Manuel Herrera (Hometown: Charlotte, NC), Afra Hines (Hometown: Miami, FL), Gabriel Hyman (Hometown: Chesapeake, VA), Kolton Krouse (Hometown: Gilbert, Arizona), Mattie Love(Hometown: Layton, UT), Krystal Mackie (Hometown: Brooklyn, NY), Yani Marin (Hometown: Miami, FL), Nando Morland (Hometown: Colombia / Denver, CO), Khori Michelle Petinaud (Hometown: Centreville, VA), Ida Saki (Hometown: Dallas, TX), Ron Todorowski (Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA), and Neka Zang (Hometown: Scottsdale, AZ).
Bob Fosse’s Dancin’ is produced by Joey Parnes, Hunter Arnold, Kayla Greenspan, Rodger Hess & Michael Seago, Jay Alix & Una Jackman, Bob Boyett, The Shubert Organization, James L. Nederlander, Tim Forbes, Carson Gleberman, Park West Productions, McCabe Ventures, Fran Kirmser & Jodi Kaplan, Greg Young, The Fabulous Invalid, Julie Hess & Tommy Hess, and The Old Globe in cooperation with Nicole Fosse.
Bob Fosse’s Dancin’ originally opened on Broadway at the Broadhurst Theatre on March 27, 1978 and later transferred to the Ambassador Theatre. The production ran for 1,774 performances. Dancin’ was nominated for seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical, and brought Fosse his seventh Tony Award for Best Choreography.
This production of Bob Fosse’s Dancin’ premiered at San Diego’s Old Globe Theatre from April 19, 2022, to June 5, 2022.
Interscope Records is proud to announce the cast album for the “brilliant” (Variety) 2023 revival of Parade — Alfred Uhry and Jason Robert Brown’s award-winning musical, which opened on March 16 at New York’s Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre to rave reviews. Parade (2023 Broadway Cast Recording) features the vocal talents of Tony, Grammy, and Emmy Award® winner Ben Platt and Micaela Diamond and conducted by composer Jason Robert Brown, and will be released on Thursday, March 23. Pre-order it HERE.
Leo and Lucille Frank (Ben Platt and Micaela Diamond) are a newlywed Jewish couple struggling to make a life in the old red hills of Georgia. When Leo is accused of an unspeakable crime, it propels them into an unimaginable test of faith, humanity, justice, and devotion. Riveting and gloriously hopeful, Parade reminds us that to love, we must truly see one another.
The current revival of Parade, which is directed by two-time Tony Award nominee Michael Arden, has received overwhelming acclaim since its debut. Entertainment Weekly called it “a phenomenal production that feels more poignant and powerful than ever,” while Variety said, “Ben Platt stuns in a powerful Broadway production of an essential American musical.”
Platt (Dear Evan Hansen, The Book of Mormon) and Diamond’s performances (The Cher Show) were singled out for praise. Deadline gushed “Ben Platt has no trouble reminding us just why he’s become one of Broadway’s most beloved performers. His vocals here are stunning in a pitch-perfect performance,” while The Guardian raved that “Micaela Diamond’s singing voice is luminous.” “Micaela Diamond, as Lucille Frank, breaks your heart with no affectation whatsoever, and a voice directly wired to her emotions,” wrote The New York Times in its Critic’s Pick review. Tickets are available now at www.paradebroadway.com.
Parade (2023 Broadway Cast Recording) showcases their voices, as well as other members of the all-star cast, while capturing the essence of a musical that, Entertainment Weekly writes, “is the most gorgeous production on Broadway.” Viewers will get a special preview of the musical on March 23 when Platt and Diamond perform its signature ballad “This Is Not Over Yet” on NBC’s Today accompanied by Jason Robert Brown on piano.
Out of the Box Theatrics (Elizabeth Flemming, Founder and Producing Artistic Director; Ethan Paulini, Associate Artistic Director) is pleased to announce that Grammy and Emmy Award winner Kristolyn Lloyd (Dear Evan Hansen) will star in the Off-Broadway developmental production of Millennials Are Killing Musicals, written by Drama League songwriting contest and NAMT Challenge winner Nico Juber. The production, to be directed by Ciara Renée(Waitress, Frozen), will play a limited engagement from May 7-28, 2023, at Theatre 71 at the Church of the Blessed Sacrament (152 West 71st Street). Opening night is May 15. Tickets are on sale now at Ovation Tix.
The Entertainment Community Fund, formerly The Actors Fund, the national human services organization supporting the needs of those working in the entertainment and performing arts industry, today announced that The Shubert Organization has made a $5 million gift to the Fund to support expansion of The Samuel J. Friedman Health Center for the Performing Arts in New York City, the Actors Fund Home in Englewood, New Jersey, and affordable housing and a community arts center at The Hollywood Arts Collective in Los Angeles.
The $5 million gift will be used to expand doctors’ offices and services at The Samuel J. Friedman Health Center for the Performing Arts in New York City, with additional support to the Actors Fund Home in Englewood, NJ. Funds will also be used to bolster the construction and programs of The Hollywood Arts Collective, a new affordable housing and community arts center located in the heart of Hollywood where the Central Gardens will be named in honor of The Shubert Organization.
The Shubert Organization has long supported the Fund’s ongoing work to help people in performing arts and entertainment. In 2017, The Shubert Organization unveiled The Shubert Pavilion: an expansion to the Actors Fund Home, an assisted living and skilled nursing care facility located in Englewood, New Jersey. The Shubert Pavilion houses a 25-bed short-stay rehabilitation center available to the general public and intended for people who are recovering from illness or surgery, as well as 14 assisted living beds. The facility also includes a fully equipped gym for physical, occupational and speech therapies.
Robert E. Wankel, Chairman and CEO of The Shubert Organization, also serves as Chair of The Actors Fund Housing Development Corporation Board of Directors, a role in which he supports and guides the development of affordable housing for the performing arts and entertainment community to improve lives, create jobs, foster economic development and revitalize communities. In 2022, Wankel received the Entertainment Community Fund’s Medal of Honor, an award presented at the Fund’s annual gala that recognizes individuals who have had a profound impact on the entertainment community.
“The Entertainment Community Fund is honored by the long-standing commitment of The Shubert Organization and the countless ways it supports our work to provide a safety net for people in the performing arts community,” said Fund Board Chair Brian Stokes Mitchell. “A special thank you to Bob Wankel for his continued leadership not only at The Shubert Organization, but also with the Actors Fund Housing Development Corporation Board of Directors.”
“The Shubert Organization is proud to strengthen the Entertainment Community Fund’s ability to provide affordable housing, medical care, emergency financial assistance and so much more to those in our industry,” said Robert E. Wankel. “We look forward to all that’s to come in our ongoing collaborations, from Englewood to Times Square to Hollywood and beyond.”
Kids Night On Broadway Is Tonight
Kids’ Night on Broadway, is where young people age 18 and under can see a participating Broadway show for free when accompanied by a full-paying adult*. A Kids’ Night on Broadway ticket also includes restaurant discounts, parking discounts, and more. Select shows will offer in-theatre activities for kids including talkbacks and activity books.
Participating shows include:
A Beautiful Noise
Bob Fosse’s Dancin’
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Life of Pi
The Lion King
MJ The Musical
Moulin Rouge! The Musical
Peter Pan Goes Wrong
SIX (NOTE: due to show schedules, the Kids’ Night promotion for SIX took place yesterday)
Some Like it Hot
If you haven’t gotten your ticket,,,,it is time to do so.
Hadestown Celebrates Its 1000th Performance and the First Day of Spring With Lilies White, Anaïs Mitchell and Rachel Chavkin
Hadestown, the Tony® and Grammy Award®-winning Best Musical, celebrated both tomorrow’s first day of Spring and the beloved show recently achieving a milestone 1,000 performances at Broadway’s Walter Kerr Theatre (219 West 48th Street) with a surprise appearance by songwriter Anaïs Mitchell and director Rachel Chavkin.
After a heartfelt thank you from both, Mitchell and Tony Award winner Lillias White led the audience in a special performance of a classic springtime anthem. Then, as the audience departed the theater, the cast took to the Kerr’s fire escape overlooking West 48th Street and threw flowers to fans.
In addition to White, Hadestown also stars original Broadway cast member Jewelle Blackman as Persephone, Grammy Award® winner Reeve Carney as Orpheus, Tony Award nominee Tom Hewitt as Hades, and two-time Tony Award nominee Eva Noblezada as Eurydice. They are joined by Amelia Cormack, Shea Renne, and Soara-Joye Ross as the Fates. The chorus of Workers is played by Emily Afton, Malcolm Armwood, Alex Puette, Trent Saunders, and Grace Yoo. The cast includes swings Sojourner Brown, Brandon Cameron, Max Kumangai, and Yael “YaYa” Reich, Allysa Shorte, and Tanner Ray Wilson.
Hadestown originated as Mitchell’s indie theater project that toured Vermont which she then turned into an acclaimed album. With Chavkin, her artistic collaborator, Hadestown has been transformed into a genre-defying new musical that blends modern American folk music with New Orleans-inspired jazz to reimagine a sweeping ancient tale.
Following two intertwining love stories — that of young dreamers Orpheus and Eurydice, and that of King Hades and his wife Persephone — Hadestown invites audiences on a hell-raising journey to the underworld and back. Mitchell’s beguiling melodies and Chavkin’s poetic imagination pit industry against nature, doubt against faith, and fear against love. Performed by a vibrant ensemble of actors, dancers, and singers, Hadestown delivers a deeply resonant and defiantly hopeful theatrical experience.
Hadestown marks the first time in over a decade that a woman has been the solo author of a musical: writing the music, lyrics, and book, and is the fourth time in Broadway history a woman has accomplished this creative feat. It also marks the first time in Broadway history that a show’s female composer and female director both won Tony Awards for their work. Earlier this year, the landmark musical became the longest running show in the history of the Walter Kerr Theatre and holds the record for highest grossing musical in that venerated stage’s 100-year history.
The Original Broadway Cast Recording of Hadestown is one of the most streamed cast albums of all time with over 300 million streams to date. It topped Billboard’s Broadway Cast Recording chart and debuted at #8 on the Top Album chart. The CD edition features a 64-page booklet and a two-disc set, while the triple vinyl edition features a 16-page booklet. Both editions include complete song lyrics and photos of the Hadestown cast and creative team in the studio, and other exclusive content. A special limited-edition transparent green vinyl box set was just released on Friday.
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