Hugh Jackman in "Les Miserables". Image via lesmiserablesfilm.com.
The Broadway news this week was particularly brutal with three tough closing announcements — Chaplin, hanging in there against the odds for a number of months, Scandalous, quickly closing after tough reviews and The Anarchist, a shockingly brief run given combo of Mamet, LuPone and Winger. But it’s the holiday season and I refuse to let any of this get me down. Instead, let’s look ahead with some delicious preview footage from three musicals.
First up, the film version of Les Miserables has been getting generally very good reviews (except for those who seem to want it not to be a musical) after opening in London. There’s a lot of footage on the internet and I’ve been trying to stay away from it so I go into the theater fresh. However, I couldn’t resist watching this snippet about a NEW SONG written just for the film:
The Cast of "Giant". Photo by Joan Marcus.
The circle of life isn’t just a lyric sung while Julie Taymor puppets circle The Lion King; it’s the natural progression on Broadway. In this theater news round-up, we celebrate the eternal constants of birth, death and taxing reviews…
Daniel Breaker & Cheyenne Jackson in "The Performers". Photo by Carol Rosegg.
You can’t have a sunrise without a sunset (don’t believe me, go see Fiddler on the Roof). And we can’t have openings without closings. The Broadway porn/romantic comedy The Performers opened this week to less than vociferous reviews and already announced it will close Sunday. Those wishing to see Cheyenne Jackson in a loin cloth had best hurry.
- And some shows are just a twinkle in their parents’ eyes. Producers announced this week that they are in early stages of developing a juke box musical based on the songs of pop hit-maker Diane Warren (“How Do I Live” “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing”) and an adaptation of the Savannah-set bestseller Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil with book by Alfred Uhry (Driving Miss Daisy) and music from the catalog of Johnny Mercer. Celine Dion ballads vs. murderous society gays…not as antithetical as one would think.
- Finally, Broadway’s hottest married duo Audra McDonald and Will Swenson are kicking off a kickstarter campaign for Facing East, an independent film to be directed by Swenson based on an off-Broadway play by author Carol Lynn Pearson. The story sounds moving and topical (a mormon couple deals with the suicide of their gay son) and the incentives to donate are amazing (McDonald singing to you on your birthday!). Watch the teaser video after the jump…
The Cast of "Chaplin". Photo by Joan Marcus.
Buckle up, boys and girls! The theater season is about to get up and rolling so we’ve got a two part preview of the tunes and tears the Great White Way has to offer through the end of the year. Since the first show out of the gate post-Labor Day is a musical, let’s start with a closer look at the originals and revivals singing and dancing onto Broadway during the rest of 2012.
On a quick glance, the slate is…well…a bit like the island of misfit toys; a curiosity chest of pieces with unusual histories from less than name brand writers. But one never knows until the curtain goes up what we truly have in store; the oddest ducks (or Cats) can sometimes turn out to be blockbusters.
Chaplin (September 10): One of Hollywood’s first mega-stars gets the first slot of the season in what promises to be a splashy theatrical biography. The biggest news is that the lead is being played by a relative unknown (almost unheard of in these marquee driven times), Rob McClure. Also in the plus column, a book co-written by musical vet Thomas Meehan (Hairspray) and supporting turns from the recent Closer than Ever dynamic duo Jenn Colella and Christiane Noll…as well as our very own Theater Buff, Wayne Wilcox.
Categories: To See or Not To See a christmas story musical, annie revival, carolee carmello, Chaplin Musical, chita rivera, christiane noll, elf musical, george hearn, jenn colella, kathie lee gifford, katie finneran, mystery of edwin drood, new musicals, pasek and paul, rebecca musical, Revivals, rob mcclure, roundabout theatre, scandalous musical, thomas meehan, Tony Awards, wayne wilcox