Sure, the Tony nominations were the big theater news this week, but there were a lot of other stories to get hot about as Broadway dropped some shows — and some clothes:
Nick Kenkel for "Broadway Bares: Happy Endings". Photo by Andrew Eccles.
- If the weather is getting warmer than you know it’s time for Broadway to bare it all. The run up to the big burlesque night of all nights, Broadway Bares, begins this Sunday at 9pm with a curtain raiser, so to speak, of Solo Strips. This one-night-only fundraiser will feature ten of the hottest men of Broadway (including Theater Buffs Nick Kenkel and Sam Cahn) shaking their money makers to make some money for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.
- As sure as some producers are popping champagne on Tony nomination morning, others are dropping the axe. Without Tony love to build audience awareness both Seminar and Magic/Bird posted closing notices. While Bird never found its box office magic, Seminar completes a fairly healthy run, suffering only from a drop in sales after the loss of its original marquee star, Alan Rickman.
- That fiery gal Rebecca is actually making it to Manderlay via Broadway as the on-again, off-again musical announced an October 20 start date for previews. Unfortunately, the presumed leading lady Sierra Boggess has moved on to another Broadway production slated for the same period, Prince of Broadway.
- Two “hotties” making theater related news this week: two-time Tony nominee (and Sutton Foster main squeeze) Bobby Cannavale will return to Broadway in a revival of Clifford Odets’s The Big Knife and indie-film pin-up Joseph Gordon-Levitt is developing a movie remake of the classic Menken & Ashman musical Little Shop of Horrors. If you’ve seen this little number from 500 Days of Summer, you know that Gordon-Levitt has some dance moves in him…so this might not be a bad thing.
- The anniversary of an important milestone in the history of musicals passed this week, but no one seemed to notice. Well, no one but my good friend and amazing writer at large (yes, Jason, amazing as in awe-inspiring) Jason Cochran in this insightful article about the film version of Chicago and its “justified” musical numbers. I couldn’t agree more with his analysis and have to say that the box this has created is constraining the musical imagination, even on stage. Will the film version of Les Miserables swing the pendulum back?
Categories: The Buzz alan rickman, bobby cannavale, Broadway Bares, Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, chicago movie, clifford odets, joseph gordon levitt, les miserables movie, little shop of horrors, Magic/Bird, rebecca musical, seminar, Sierra Boggess, the big knife, Tony Awards
"The Lion King". Photo by Joan Marcus.
Money makes the world go round in this week’s clinking clanking round-up of theater news:
- Talk about money in the bank, the casting for the Central Park Into the Woods gets better and better. Hot on the heals of Amy Adams’s addition to the cast, producers revealed that Donna Murphy (Passion) will be playing the Witch. If you’ve seen her sublime work in the animated film Tangled, you know Murphy will be one mother of an overprotective mother.
- I still can’t get the songs from Newsies out of my head and I saw it weeks ago. Just to be sure I never forget a single “bruddah,” the cast album is now available for digital download. (PS. My favorite New Yawk rhyme in the show pairs “twirl it” with a very Flushing “terlet”.)
Molly Ranson in "Carrie". Photo by Joan Marcus.
Speaking of cast albums that will get inside your head (literally), the recent Off-Broadway production of Carrie is officially going into the studio to preserve it for all time on April 17. The CD will be released by and available for preorder from Ghostlight Records. Ghostlight and Carrie. Of course.
- In, I assume, an attempt to cash in on men who don’t want to see a musical with their wives, the guys-night-at-the-theater niche got its next entry (following the warm welcome for last year’s Lombardi) as Magic/Bird opened on Broadway Wednesday night. The reviews suggest that this tale of basketball greats is well-acted but a little lacking in big game drama.
- I don’t know if you’ve noticed but there are a LOT of shows opening on Broadway this month. That’s because they are all going for the gold, aka Tony nominations, and they’ve got to hit before the end of the month to be eligible. Tony nominations will be announced on a live webcast at 8:30am, May 1 by Kristin Chenoweth and Jim Parsons. Join me, broadwayblogtom, on twitter that morning for some immediate reactions/analysis/grousing.
- And finally, in seriously green news, Bloomberg published an amazing article about the way profits are split on the blockbuster hit Wicked–including almost $90 million for the writers. Like my agent always says, ” In music theater, you either make nothing or millions.” And the mailman won the lottery, indeed…
Categories: The Buzz Amy Adams, Broadway Cast Albums, Carrie Musical, Donna Murphy, Ghostlight Records, into the woods, Jim Parsons, Julie Taymor, Kristin Chenoweth, Magic/Bird, Newsies, phantom of the opera, Shakespeare in the Park, The Lion King, Tony Awards, Wicked