Sunday, 19 April 2015

Broadway News Round Up 33

Jonathan Freeman as Jafar, Photo by Cylla Von Tiedemann or Deen Van Meer

A news round up?  What's one of those?!  Seriously though it feels like forever since I did one of these so there's like a month's worth of stuff to catch up with!  Because of that this post will be extremely link heavy so sorry for that in advance!

Ok, time to catch up with what the Aladdin family have been up to in the last month!

Adam Jacobs, Courtney Reed, James Monroe Iglehart and Jonathan Freeman all sat down with Broadway World to discuss Aladdin's first anniversary on Broadway.  Part 1 and Part 2And Playbill has some birthday pics!

The cast also got a little competitive as they took part in a hilarious Co-Star Challenge;

Aladdin has the best fans!  Including Maura Consedine who created this great video to celebrate the show's first year on Broadway!  Thanks Maura!!

On Aladdin's anniversary James Monroe Iglehart returned to The View to make morning television a little more tuneful!

And as it moved into its second year on Broadway, Aladdin celebrated with some very special Playbill covers.  Yes, they are awesome!!  The show also shows no signs of slowing down at the box office as it broke house records again taking over $2 million thanks to the extra show in Easter week!  Congratulations all!!

NYCastings interviewed Adam Jacobs;

This week Dancing with the Stars had a special Disney theme and since one of the couples was dancing to "A Whole New World" Aladdin and Jasmine themselves recorded a special message for them.

Adam Jacobs and Courtney Reed are to lead an audition technique workshop next week for A Class Act NY!  The workshop takes place on May 16th and is limited to just 18 places so if you want to take part make sure you sign up fast!

James Monroe Iglehart guest starred on the 4th episode of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (which also features The Little Mermaid's Sebastian, Tituss Burgess).  I believe the series is on Netflix, which means that now I've binge watched Daredevil I might just have to check it out.

Due to popular demand James Monroe Iglehart has added a second date to his 54 Below debut.  You can now see James on 4th and 18th May but demand is high so make sure to get your tickets fast!!  If you want a sneak peak at his set list then make sure you check out Broadway Box as James answers their questions with songs from his upcoming show.  And you can see pictures from the press preview at TheaterMania and Playbill.

James Monroe Iglehart took part in Stephen Sondheim's 85th birthday celebrations.  And you can see some of his performance of "Agony" from Into the Woods at Playbill.

As we get nearer awards season The Hollywood Reporter has posted a piece looking at where last years winners (including Aladdin's own James Monroe Iglehart) are now.  Of course we already know the answer to that - he's still making wishes come true at the New Amsterdam  Theatre every night as he brings the Genie to magical life!!

Aladdin's new Kassim shares his favourite back stage things!

Steel Burkhardt, Brian Gonzales and Jonathan Schwartz share theatregoing experiences with Playbill.

Steel Burkhardt is also taking part in Broadway Sings Bruno Mars on May 17th.

Steel Burkhardt took part in Broadway World's Friday Six Q&A.

Broadway World reported that Alan Menken's new musical The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz will debut at the Segal Centre for Performing Arts in Montreal June 7th to June 28th.  For the complete cast and more information see here.  But that's not all!  Deadline is reporting that Alan Menken is teaming up with Stephen Schwartz once more for a new movie musical by Josh Gad and Jeremy Garelick.  I have no idea how Alan manages to balance so many projects at once but I can't wait to see (or at least hear) them all!

The LA Times has a great interview with Alan Menken, primarily about Newsies but it touches on a lot of his other works as well and is a really great read.

USA Today interviews Alan Menken about Aladdin, The Hunchback of Notre Dame and more.

His Something Rotten! is still in previews on Broadway but Aladdin's Director/Choreographer Casey Nicholaw is reportedly already eyeing his next project as he is set to bring Dreamgirls to London's West End!

Tia Altinay took part in the Broadway Sings for Pride recording on March 15th.

Yurel Echezarreta returned to Harrison School for the Arts for a special fundraiser concert.

Yurel Echezarreta is taking part in Broadway Bares next month.

Khori Petinaud announced her first TV gig in The Knick!  Congratulations Khori!!

Lauryn Ciardullo returned to Byram Hills High School last week to take part in a special fund raiser performance of Next to Normal for the school's stage program.

Dennis Stowe took part in Take the Stage with Broadway Stars last night.

Kathryn Allison is taking part in a Ten Minute Musical.  And yes you can hear it online for free!

Seattle's original Omar, Andrew Keenan-Bolger, is returning to the Paper Mill Playhouse (where he appeared in the Pilot Production of Newsies) in Ever After.

Aladdin's original Kassim (and still the spooky voice!) Brandon O'Neill is now taking to the stage once more in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof at the ACT Contemporary Theatre in Seattle.  Tickets are available here.  And speaking of Brandon O'Neill you can look forward to hearing him again in the upcoming DLC expansion for Destiny.

That's all from the cast, now for something a little different as Disney On Broadway's YouTube channel shares a menu fit for royalty inspired by Aladdin;

On 8th March Aladdin had a very special performance for the Autism Theatre Initiative.  You can read about this incredible evening here and see what the cast had to say below;

Whilst I was away a little Disney film called Cinderella came out in cinemas and before that was an animated short.  You might have heard of it, it's called Frozen Fever.  Well the song from the short is available on iTunes and the ensemble for the short features some of Aladdin's cast including Merwin Foard and Marisha Wallace!  So make sure you check it out!!

Now for something a little special.  Do YOU want to join the cast of AladdinPlaybill have posted an Equity casting call for the show so if you want to join the Aladdin family this is your chance!  Good luck!!

And finally - make sure you start following @squeegool on Instagram for some incredible pieces of art like this beautiful rendition of Aladdin and Jasmine's duet, "A Million Miles Away".

That's everything from Aladdin!  Now for the last time...

Ok, this is really late but I really wanted to get my review of the show up before it closed so that was my priority over the news round up when we first got home earlier this month.  So now, better late than never, is the final news round up for the Paper Mill Playhouse's production of The Hunchback of Notre Dame.  This is going to be big so take it as a celebration of all that Hunchback was and hopefully will be again.

The cast of The Hunchback of Notre Dame performed at Broadway Sessions ahead of their Paper Mill run and you can now see them online!

Michael Arden spends a 2 show day with Playbill.

Michael Arden talks with NBC New York.

Ciara Renee is coming to 54 Below in her own solo concert on 15th May so if you're in New York make sure you go and see this incredible leading lady at Broadway's favourite supper club.  Some more details can be found here.

Ciara Renee talks with Playbill about finding Esmeralda.

Ciara Renee takes part in Playbill's Cue & A.

Watch Ciara Renee transform into Esmeralda with Playbill.

This news was actually the first thing I read when I landed back in the UK - Ciara Renee has joined the cast of the currently untitled Arrow and The Flash spin-off as Hawkgirl!  I'm a huge comics fan so I love this news!! It also continues a fun streak of musical stars joining the DCU and long may it continue!

Ciara Renee took part in a benefit concert for the St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital on 6th April.

Patrick Page talks with Playbill about finding the good in Frollo.

Patrick Page took part in the 100 Musicals in Mufti benefit on 30th March.

Andrew Samonsky is returns to his home town to take part in a one night only cabaret concert Andrew Samonsky: Coming Home at Ventura County's Rubicon Theatre.  The concert is on May 3rd and you can find more information, including ticket details, at Broadway World.

Playbill interviews Andrew Samonsky.

Entertainment Weekly talks with the creative team.

Stephen Schwartz talks with Playbill.

Buzzfeed talks with the creative team about taking Hunchback back to its darker roots. talks with the creative team. talks with the cast and creative team;

NJTV News talks with the creative team about bringing Hunchback to stage with a live choir;

Huffington Post talks with Director Scott Schwartz.

Jersey Arts TV talks with the creative team;

Associate Director Jeremy Scott Lapp speaks with the Tiara Talk Show.

Samantha Massell has updated her website.  She's played Jasmine and Esmeralda so make sure you check it out to see where Sam goes next!  And she also has links to the cast of Hunchback singing at Broadway Sessions so check that out!!

The Belles of Notre Dame have a dance party with Playbill!

One fan's reasons why you'll cry at The Hunchback of Notre Dame (not ashamed to admit I did).

Obviously whilst I was away The Hunchback of Notre Dame had it's Opening Night and TheaterMania was there to capture the cast taking their well deserved bows.  And so was Broadway World (along with even more photos from the cast party afterwards!) in fact they even have video!!

And here are the reviews;

NY Daily News
Huffington Post
The Hollywood Reporter
NY Times
Broadway World
Tiara Talk Show
Daily Record

Sadly we now know that The Hunchback of Notre Dame isn't coming to Broadway (at least not yet) so we'll have to wait a little longer to hear those glorious bells ring again.  Fans are trying to change that (you can sign the petition to Disney Theatrical here) and there's already rumours of further regional productions to come (remember this article which said that the Tuacahn Amphitheatre was being considered by Disney Theatrical to produce their own staging of the show, now that would be a sight to behold!) but until then I want to leave you with this;

Oh, and I just want to say that it was really incredible to see #PMPHunchback trending on Twitter for the show's final day.  This show really touched a lot of people.  Broadway may not be in the show's immediate future but it does have a future.  It's too powerful, too meaningful and too relevant for it not to be brought to life again someday soon.
Ok that's everything for this news round up but before I go I just want to say happy anniversary to Beauty and the Beast!  Disney's first Broadway show celebrated it's 21st birthday yesterday and looking at Disney Theatrical today that show has left an incredible legacy.  Playbill has posted a nice article looking at the original cast of the show and what they're doing today.  And speaking of Beauty and the Beast Tim Rice this week confirmed that he and Alan Menken are doing new songs for the upcoming live action adaptation so that's something to really look forward to!  And if you want to hear more about the film make sure you check out this post that Ian Mckellen made on Facebook, I don't know much about table reads but this one sounds incredible with the cast already dancing and singing and a 30 strong choir.  Sounds like this one is going to be something very special.
I'd hoped to have it ready for today but this news round up took a lot longer than I expected (and if I'm being honest I'm shattered from staying up till almost 5am watching Mark Hamill on the Star Wars Celebration live stream last night) so my 1 year review of Aladdin will now be up in a few days time.  I'm really sorry for the delay, please watch out for that this week and I'll be back next weekend as the news round up returns to its regular weekly updates.

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