THIS WEEK @ JK's TheatreScene

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Well, my "little vacation" ended up lasting two and a half years... funny how life steers your life in directions you weren't planning on. I'll start off with occasional posts, but I fully plan to resume this blog to full speed by the new year.

I hope you'll come back for frequent visits, to see new reviews, to share opinions, to take a survey (or two), and to celebrate the shows and show people that have made the TheatreScene!

Jeff

Thursday, July 31, 2014

TBT: Into the Woods

With this week's release of the teaser trailer for Disney's Into the Woods, I couldn't help but wax nostalgic for the original Broadway production, and for the Broadway revival.  I loved the original from the very beginning, having caught it very early in previews (when the Witch had a whole song called "Boom! Crunch!" among other things).  And I am not ashamed to admit that I really enjoyed the 2002 revival, too.  In the intervening years, I've seen many different productions - some great, some good, some not so much - and I admit that I was growing a wee bit weary of it.  Now, with some time away from it, I am looking forward to the forthcoming off-Broadway revival, and the trailer has me pretty stoked to see the film.

This being Throwback Thursday, though, let's take a look back!




THE ORIGINAL 
BROADWAY 
PRODUCTION
Martin Beck Theatre
First Preview: September 29, 1987
Opening Night: November 5, 1987
Closing Night: September 3, 1989
43 previews, 765 performances



What I LOVED:
One of the best original casts ever!
Chip Zien and Joanna Gleason are still
my favorite Baker and His Wife
The Kids Are Alright:
Danielle Ferland was SO PERFECT!
My favorite "moment in the woods":
When the Witch gets all
"Bernadette Peters" on us!
Fairy Tales do come true! Cinderella (Kim Crosby)
really married her Prince (Robert Westenberg)!
THE 2002 
BROADWAY 
REVIVAL PRODUCTION
Broadhurst Theatre
First Preview: April 13, 2002
Opening Night: April 30, 2002
Closing Night: December 29, 2002
18 previews, 279 performances




Loved MOST of the changes:


"Our Little World" was, well,
perfect.
Two wolves are better than one!
I love a LIVE Milky White! (Chad Kimball)
The "dancing" not so much...

HERE'S ONE THING BOTH PRODUCTIONS HAD IN COMMON:




Jeff
5.215

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Broadway Ladies: Ms. July 2014: Lena Hall

Ms. July 2014
Lena Hall


WHY SHE'S MS. BROADWAY: Maybe it's because she's giving one of three gender-bending roles currently on Broadway.  Or maybe it's because she's also co-starred with both of the others.  It could also be because she won a Tony Award for her efforts.  (So did the other two...)  It could also be that it's because she's really paid her dues, having been a Broadway baby for 15 years now, since her debut in the closing company of the legendary Cats (she played Demeter, the singer of "Grizabella - The Glamour Cat," which she also played on the road). Between then and now, she's also appeared in the revival of 42nd Street (she was tapping cutie Anytime Annie), was a sing vampire in Dracula: The Musical, was a swinging ape in Tarzan, and was Stark Sands' almost wife in Kinky Boots.  She also did a stint on reality television (MTV's Legally Blonde: The Search for Elle Woods) and more recently did the Met Gala and appeared in her undies with The Skivvies at 54 Below.  These days she's living loud and large as Yitzhak in Hedwig and the Angry Inch... but whether you call her Celina Carvajal or Lena Hall, there's no doubt she deserves to be Ms. Broadway July 2014!

HEAD SHOTS AND CANDIDS





THE MET GALA AND THE SKIVVIES




REALITY TV AND HER ROCK BAND THE DEAFENING






PROMETHEUS BOUND AT A.R.T.




BROADWAY
Cats, 42nd Street, Dracula, Kinky Boots, Hedwig and the Angry Inch












Jeff
5.214

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Broadway Boys: Mr. July 2014: Curtis Holbrook

Mr. July 2014
Curtis Holbrook


WHY HE'S MR. BROADWAY: It's been an interesting month for one of my all-time favorite performers.  He's been co-starring with (as the Times Square billboard trumpets) "Broadway's Biggest Star," Idina Menzel in If/Then ever since Anthony Rapp was felled by an ACL injury.  But that is just the most recent event in what is shaping up to be a varied and lengthy career as a working actor.  After making his debut in Footloose, he went on to roles in Fosse and The Boy From Oz.  From then on, this dancer began creating roles (and increasingly larger ones at that) in such shows as Taboo, All Shook Up, and West Side Story.  He really grabbed the Broadway community's attention when he did a stint as Sonny in Xanadu (spelling Cheyenne Jackson).  Then, in prep for the National Tour of The Addams Family, he did a stint in the Broadway company.  And now, he's back doing a great job with the unenviable task of taking over for Ms. Menzel's RENT co-star. No wonder Curtis Holbrook is Mr. Broadway.

HEAD SHOTS AND RED CARPET CANDIDS







Grease is one show he hasn't done, but he's done the red carpet thing 
with Olivia Newton-John (Xanadu) and John Travolta (the movie premiere of Hairspray)

HE'S THE KING OF THE MUNY
Kiss Me, Kate, Singin' in the Rain, Oklahoma!, West Side Story








VARIETY IS THE SPICE OF LIFE
Teaching, NYMF, Regional Theatre, Out of Town Try Outs and the movie version of Hairspray


Frog Kiss

Lysistrata Jones when it was called Give It Up!

Disney's Aladdin (as Iago)


TWO-TIME GYPSY ROBE RECIPIENT!

Xanadu and If/Then

BROADWAY
All Shook Up, Xanadu, West Side Story









Jeff
5.213
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