The Great Comet is looking for fans to join creator Dave Malloy and members of the cast to sing group chorus sections and to play the show’s famous egg shakers for the original Broadway cast recording. This special fan recording session will take place in midtown Manhattan on Monday, February 13 from 6:00pm – 7:30pm EST. No purchase is necessary – to sign up, and receive the exact location, visit www.greatcometbroadway.com/castrecording
Big or small, the theater scene is getting a major wake-up call this November with three production that deliver award-winning stars, Broadway transfers, and film-to-stage adaptations. Here are our three picks for the month…
Natasha, Pierre and THE GREAT COMET of 1812 Move over, Hamilton, there’s another epic, historical musical coming to town. The Great Comet has been kicking around for several years and those who saw earlier incarnations at Ars Nova or the American Repertory Theatre may be intrigued by its Broadway bolstering, which includes a massive overhaul of the Imperial Theatre and the arrival of ballad-belting superstar Josh Groban.
The story is extracted from a small excerpt of Tolstoy’s War and Peace. Natasha is a beautiful ingénue visiting Moscow while she waits for her beloved fiancé Andrey to return from the war. In a moment of indiscretion, she is seduced by the dashing (but already married) Anatole and her position in society is ruined. Her only hope lies with Pierre (Groban), the lonely outsider whose love and compassion for Natasha may be the key to her redemption… and to the renewal of his own soul.
Dead Poets Society Who can forget Robin Williams’ stirring performance as Professor Keating in the 1989 Academy Award-winning film? Tom Schulman adapts his own screenplay for this much-anticipated production. which follows the trials and tribulations at a rigorous all-boys preparatory school renowned for its ancient traditions, where the unconventional Professor Keating inspires his students to defy conformity and to live passionately.
Classic Stage Company’s artistic director John Doyle helms the production starring Jason Sudeikis.
Dead Poets Society Classic Stage Company
136 East 13th Street
Opening night: November 17
(Through December 18)
Sweet Charity Musical theater fans have officially gone mad in anticipation of Sutton Foster’s casting as Charity in Neil Simon, Cy Coleman, and Dorothy Field’s 1966 hit. She’s got quite a legacy to follow, including Gwen Verdon and Debbie Allen. This production, presented in an intimate setting by The New Group, features original choreography by Joshua Bergasse (On the Town) and promises a fresh, modern perspective by Tony-nominated director Leigh Silverman (Violet, Well).
Coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the classic musical Sweet Charity, the musical follows Charity Hope Valentine, the sassy, diehard romantic dancehall hostess whose naivety and overeager embrace of every man she meets keeps getting her in hot water.
Sutton Foster, Ryan Worsing and Joel Perez in rehearsal for The New Group’s production of ‘Sweet Charity.’ (Photo: Hunter Canning via The Broadway Blog.)
Sweet Charity The Romulus Linney Courtyward Theatre
at The Pershing Square Signature Center
480 West 42nd Street
Opening night: November 20
(Limited run through January 8, 2017)
Matthew Wexler is The Broadway Blog’s editor. Follow him on social media at @roodeloo.
Denée Benton in ‘Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812.’ (Photo provided by Matt Ross PR.)
Principal casting continues for the much-anticipated Broadway production of “Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812” starring Josh Groban .
Denée Benton will make her Broadway debut as ‘Natasha,’ joining the Grammy-nominated multi-platinum recording artist, also making his Broadway debut as ‘Pierre.’ Benton will reprise the role of ‘Natasha,’ which she played in the recent engagement of the musical at the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge. Created by Dave Malloy (Preludes, Ghost Quartet) and directed by Rachel Chavkin (Small Mouth Sounds, Preludes), The Great Cometwill land on Broadway in September 2016.
Benton graduated from Carnegie Mellon University in 2014 and has appeared as ‘Nabulungi’ in The Book of Mormon in the West End and its US National Tour. Her regional credits include Annie, Sunset Boulevard, and Fiddler on the Roof at Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera.
Malloy’s inspired adaptation of a 70-page slice of War and Peace puts audiences just inches away from Tolstoy’s brash young lovers, as they light up Moscow in an epic tale of romance and passion.
Grammy-nominated multi-platinum recording artist Josh Groban will make his long-awaited Broadway debut as ‘Pierre’ in Natasha, Pierre & The Great comet of 1812, the new musical The New York Times calls “a heaven-sent fireball” (Brantley) and “vibrant, thrillingly imagined” (Isherwood), Entertainment Weekly calls “a stunning, blazingly original musical,” and the New York Post calls “inventive, ravishing and full-on romantic.” Created by Dave Malloy (Preludes, Ghost Quartet) and directed by Rachel Chavkin (Small Mouth Sounds, Preludes), The Great Comet will land on Broadway in September 2016.
The Great Cometis a theatrical experience like no other. Malloy’s inspired adaptation of a 70-page slice of War and Peace puts audiences just inches away from Tolstoy’s brash young lovers, as they light up Moscow in an epic tale of romance and passion. It has been showered with rave reviews and a host of accolades, including the 2013 Richard Rodgers Award for Musical Theater,a Special Citation from the OBIE Awards, five Drama Desk Award Nominations, two Drama League Award nominations, a Henry Hewes Design Award, and the Off-Broadway Alliance Award for Outstanding New Musical.
The Great Comet is currently playing a limited engagement (must end January 3, 2016) at the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge, where its innovative design has been expanded to bring the show’s signature intimate staging to a traditional proscenium-style theatre.
“I’m honored and excited to join The Great Comet family as it lands on the Great White Way,” said Groban. “I’ve admired this brilliant piece of work and its creators for a long time. It’s an imaginative and immersive show and a role that is fascinating to me on many levels. I’m thrilled to call it my first on Broadway and I hope everyone will join us.”
Josh Groban has entertained fans across the globe with his multi-platinum albums and DVDs (over 30 million sold worldwide), electrifying live performances, and comedic film and television appearances. The 34-year-old Los Angeles native is the only artist who has had two albums appear on the Top 20 Best-Selling Albums list of the past decade, according to Billboard. Groban has released seven studio albums, 2001’s self-titled double-platinum debut, 2003’s multi-platinum Closer, 2006’s double-platinum Awake, 2007’s quadruple-platinum Grammy-nominated Noel, 2010’s platinum Illuminations, and 2013’s All That Echoes, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200 chart, giving Groban his first No. 1 debut and third chart-topper.
In April, Groban released Stages, a collection of some of the greatest songs from musical theater. The album has been nominated for a 2016 Grammy Award for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album. In February, Groban will release a CD/DVD package, entitledStages Live, featuring performances recorded at the historic Los Angeles Theater in downtown L.A. for his all-new PBS special Josh Groban: Stages Live.In July 2016, he will embark on an extensive North American tour to support Stages, entitled “Josh Groban: On Stage.” An active arts education philanthropist and advocate, Groban is a member of Americans for the Arts Artists Committee and Groban’s Find Your Light Foundation helps enrich the lives of young people through arts, education, and cultural awareness.