musical theater

Arts & Culture
11:30 am
Wed July 31, 2013

"Avenue Q" at The Adirondack Theatre Festival

Stacia Newcomb, Kate Monster, Joe Donahue, Rod, Noah Zachary, Nicky, and Rob Morrison.

Avenue Q opened on Broadway 10 years ago today. It's a Tony Award winner for Best Musical, Best Score, and Best Book and is simply a blast. Part flesh (humans) and part felt (puppets) - Avenue Q is a laugh-out-loud musical.

In it, we meet Princeton a recent college grad who moves into a shabby apartment all the way out on Avenue Q. There, he meets Kate, Rod, Trekkie, Lucy the Slut, Gary Coleman, and many other colorful types who help Princeton discover his life’s purpose.

Avenue Q is now being produced by the Adirondack Theatre Festival and on stage through August 3rd.

Avenue Q at ATF is headed by artists involved with the Broadway production. Gary Adler, an ATF regular, was the show’s original Musical Director and Jennifer Barnhart, the show’s Director, was in the Original Broadway cast - sticking with the show for its entire Broadway run. Both join us this morning along with Producing Artistic Director of ATF – Mark Fleischer and cast members: Noah Zachary who plays Princeton and Rod, Stacia Newcomb who plays Lucy and Kate Monster, and Rob Morrison who plays Nicky and Trekkie Monster.

Arts & Culture
10:35 am
Mon July 29, 2013

Jason Robert Brown - "The Bridges of Madison County" at Williamstown Theatre Festival

Sarah LaDuke and Jason Robert Brown

    Jason Robert Brown’s first musical, Songs for a New World played off-Broadway in 1995 and has since been seen in more than two hundred productions around the world. He won the Tony Award for Best Original Score in 1999 for Parade and won Drama Desk Awards in 2002 for Best Music and Best Lyrics for The Last Five Years - which has been adapted for film by Richard LaGravenese and produced by Lucky Monkey Pictures, Sh-K-Boom Records, and Grand Peaks Entertainment.

Jason is the composer and lyricist of the new musical adaptation of The Bridges of Madison County. The book is by Tony and Pulitzer Prize winner Marsha Norman and it's directed by Tony winner Bartlett Sher.

The Broadway-bound show begins its run on The Williamstown Theatre Festival Mainstage this week.

Jason Robert Brown joins us to discuss the show, working with Marsha Norman, and how it was time for him to write something grand and romantic. 

Arts & Culture
10:10 am
Mon July 29, 2013

Bartlett Sher and Steven Pasquale - "The Bridges of Madison County" at Williamstown Theatre Festival

    The Williamstown Theatre Festival's Broadway-bound production of The Bridges of Madison County musical, starring Steven Pasquale and Elena Shaddow opens on August 1st.

Directed by Tony winner Bartlett Sher, Bridges will play the main stage through August 18th. The show then moves to the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre on Broadway, with performances beginning January 13th and officially opening in late-February.

Based on Robert James Waller’s 1992 bestselling novel, The Bridges of Madison County features a score by Tony winner Jason Robert Brown and a book by Tony and Pulitzer Prize winner Marsha Norman. The musical tells the story of Robert Kincaid (played by Steven Pasquale) and his life-changing, four-day love affair with Iowa farm wife, Francesca Johnson.

Sher’s Broadway credits include Golden Boy, South Pacific, Awake and Sing!, The Light in the Piazza, Joe Turner’s Come and Gone and Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown. Steven Pasquale - a series regular on the seven-season FX hit Rescue Me - last appeared on Broadway in the Neil LaBute play Reasons to Be Pretty and was here at Williamstown last season in Far From Heaven.

Arts & Culture
10:35 am
Fri July 26, 2013

"Johnny Baseball" at Williamstown Theatre Festival

James Snyder as Johnny O’Brien
Credit T Charles Erickson

    The Red Sox musical Johnny Baseball is now running on the Nikos Stage at the Williamstown Theatre Festival.

Johnny Baseball brings to life the "Curse of the Bambino" through the stories of three orphaned souls -- hard-luck 1919 Red Sox right-hander Johnny O'Brien; his idol, Babe Ruth, and Daisy Wyatt, a dazzling African-American blues singer. Their intertwining fates reveal the source of the curse and the secret to its triumphant end in 2004, while also examining social and racial undertones that have impacted the team throughout its history.

Willie Reale wrote the lyrics and conceived the story of Johnny Baseball with playwright Richard Dresser.

Arts & Culture
10:05 am
Fri July 26, 2013

Lin-Manuel Miranda on Working at the Pleasure of the "President" - and the First Treasury Secretary

Credit THE LINDNER STUDIO LLC

    In 2008, the musical In The Heights was nominated for 13 Tony Awards and won Best New Musical, Choreography, Orchestrations, and Score. It was also nominated for a Pulitzer Prize for Drama and it introduced the world at large to the diverse and impressive talents of its writer, composer, lyricist, and star, Lin-Manuel Miranda.

The writer, composer, actor worked with Stephen Sondheim and Arthur Laurents on the 2009 Broadway revival of West Side Story - specifically swapping out English lyrics for Spanish in portions of songs sung by the Puerto Rican characters; he performed in the City Center Encores presentation of Merrily We Roll Along in 2012; and he co-wrote the music and lyrics for Bring it On: The Musical - which was nominated for a Tony Award for Best New Musical this past Broadway season.

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Arts & Culture
11:30 am
Mon July 22, 2013

A Musical Inspired by the Brooklyn Superhero Supply Company at Powerhouse

New York Stage and Film and Vassar College present A Musical Inspired by the Brooklyn Superhero Supply Company as their second Martel Musical this Powerhouse season.

Trey Swieskowski, an idealistic young Brooklynite, fantasizes about becoming a superhero. Meanwhile, Astrolass (AKA “Astroman’s daughter”) is desperate to pack in her cape and escape the burden of her father’s legacy. When the two of them cross paths, they hatch a plan to change their lives forever.

Director Michael Mayer returns to Powerhouse to develop this exciting new musical and he joins us along with Peter Lerman (music and lyrics) and Simon Rich (book).

Arts & Culture
11:12 am
Wed July 17, 2013

"The Sparkley Clean Funeral Singers" at CapRep

    The World Premiere of the new musical, The Sparkley Clean Funeral Singers is now taking place at Cap Rep in Albany. In the show, Daughter Junie inherits the job of taking over the family dry cleaning business, tending to Dad --who’s having a hard time remembering things -- and keeping an eye on younger sister Lashley – who’s fresh from rehab.

Junie’s dream of being a country singer takes a hiatus until the town Pastor asks the sisters to write and perform personal send-offs for the dearly departed.

The musical comedy is from country singer-songwriter Lori Fischer - who also teaches playwriting at NYU. She teamed up with ASCAP Award-winning Nashville composer Don Chaffer. Both appear onstage, with Fischer starring as Junie. We welcome Lori Fischer, Carter Calvert (who plays Lashley Lee), and director Martha Banta who was an Assistant Director for Rent and is now Resident Director for Mamma Mia! on Broadway.

Arts & Culture
10:35 am
Wed July 17, 2013

Berkshire Theatre Group's production of "Oklahoma!"

Credit Abby LePage

  Oklahoma! is the first musical written by Rodgers and Hammerstein – the original Broadway production opened on March 31, 1943.

Featuring timeless songs such as "Oh What a Beautiful Mornin,'" "The Surrey with the Fringe on Top," “I Cain't Say No," "People Will Say We're in Love," and of course "Oklahoma!," this landmark, Pulitzer Prize winning musical is currently enjoying the Berkshire Theatre Group treatment on stage at The Colonial in Pittsfield, MA.

Eric Hill directs this American classic and he joins to tell us more.

Arts & Culture
11:12 am
Wed July 10, 2013

Fred Applegate in "Anything Goes" at Proctors

Fred Applegate and Rachel York in Anything Goes.

    The Roundabout Theatre Company’s production of Anything Goes, winner of three 2011 Tony Awards including Best Musical Revival and Choreography, opened last night at Proctors in Schenctady and runs through Sunday.

One of the greatest musicals in theater history, Cole Porter’s first-class musical comedy comes here following a triumphant run on Broadway where The New York Times called it “Musical-comedy joe" and USA Today hailed it as "Glorious and exhuberant!"

In addition to the title song, the show includes the Porter classics “I Get a Kick Out of You,” “De-Lovely,” “You’re the Top,” “Friendship,” “Easy To Love” and more!

Fred Applegate plays Moonface Martin in the show and joins us this morning. Fred has starred in London and on Broadway as Max Bialystock in The Producers. His Broadway credits include Sister Act, La Cage aux Folles, Young Frankenstein, and The Sound of Music.

Arts & Culture
11:34 am
Mon July 8, 2013

Weston Playhouse

    It has already been an exciting summer at the Weston Playhouse in Weston, Vermont - and the action continues with two productions opening soon. The Resident Producing Director of Weston, Steve Stettler, joins us along with actors Etai BenShlomo and Lauren Mufson.

Etai plays the role of Henry in the Pulitzer Prize winning musical, Next To Normal. He comes from a long run on Broadway in Wicked. With a Tony-winning rock score, Next to Normal peels back the facade of a suburban family dealing with mental illness and other contemporary American struggles.

  Lauren plays Lena in the new musical Loving Leo, a musical exploration of what it means to be a family.Lauren, played Donna on Broadway in Mamma Mia!

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