Entries tagged with: musicals
"A new musical inspired by the lyrics of Tupac Shakur"
Holler If Ya Hear Me, a new musical featuring the music of rapper Tupac Shakur, will open on Broadway at the Palace on June 19. Preview performances for the brand-new show begin May 26. Casting for the show has not yet been announced.Meanwhile, Hedwig and the Angry Inch opens in March.
Written by Todd Kreidler and directed by Tony nominee Kenny Leon (who will also direct Denzel Washington in this season's forthcoming A Raisin in the Sun revival), Holler If Ya Hear Me is an original, non-biographical story about two friends in the inner-city in the Midwest. [EW]
Miss Hedwig has found a home on Broadway! A new revival of John Cameron Mitchell and Stephen Trask's gritty rock musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch, starring Neil Patrick Harris as a transgender German singer, will begin performances March 29, 2014 at the Belasco Theatre. Directed by Michael Mayer (Spring Awakening), the new production will open officially on April 22. Emmy-nominated choreographer Spencer Liff (So You Think You Can Dance) will provide musical staging. Additional casting and creative team members will be announced shortly.We heard Hedwig was returning to the NY stage and on Broadway back in 2010, but it never happened until now. John Cameron Mitchell will not be reprising the role that he created, but hopefully Neil Patrick Harris (who was last on broadway for Assassins in 2004) will be awesome too. Tickets are on sale now.
Featuring a book by Mitchell and a score by Trask, Hedwig and the Angry Inch is a musical comedy about a fictional rock 'n' roll band, fronted by Hedwig (Harris), a transgender woman and "internationally ignored song stylist" from East Berlin. The score includes memorable tunes "Tear Me Down," "Wig in a Box," "Wicked Little Town" and "Angry Inch." [Broadway.com]
Video of the 1999 Off Broadway performance below...
photos by Jason Leiva
Glen Hansard at Mother New York
Glen Hansard, who recently played Fallon and has a handful of shows scheduled this month including one on June 29 at Beacon Theater, has added a June 28 show at the much more intimate Le Poisson Rouge. Tickets go on sale today (6/15) at noon. All tour dates, including his rescheduled run with Eddie Vedder, are listed below.
This past Tuesday (6/12), the same day he played an intimate benefit show at Housing Works, Glenn stopped by creative company Mother New York to play a private show in their offices. Jason Leiva was there and supplied us with the pictures you see in this post. More below.
Back in March Glen, whose irst ever solo album Rhythm and Repose is out on Anti- Records on June 19, went down to Austin where he played a bunch of sets at SXSW including one at our own Hotel Vegan. NYC Taper was there and he recently posted the audio. Download that at his site!
"Once," a slowly unfolding tale of two Dublin musicians falling in love, emerged early as the night's favorite, winning for John Tiffany's direction and for its book, by the Irish playwright Enda Walsh, as well as for set, lighting, sound design and orchestrations. (The actors in "Once" double as the show's band.)And congrats to the ten finalists in the "Falling Slowly" cover contest! You can watch all ten video entries at Once the Musical's Youtube page.
Near the end of the broadcast Steve Kazee, who plays the emotionally broken guitarist at the center of "Once," won for best actor and used his acceptance speech to thank his cast mates for bucking him up after his mother's death in April, shortly after the musical opened.
"This cast has carried me around, and made me feel alive, and I will never be able to fully repay them," Mr. Kazee said. [NY Times]
All Glen tour dates and more pictures from Mother New York, below...
by Rachel Kowal
Given the natural, understated quality of Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová's heartfelt performances in the movie Once, it's hard to imagine anyone else successfully embodying their roles. The movie not only starred them, but was written by them; it was inspired by their story. And it takes some time to get comfortable with the new faces. But the transition from the screen to the stage isn't too much of a stretch. Much of the music has already been written, after all.
For the most part, Once, which recently opened on Broadway after a three-month run at a smaller theatre in the East Village, closely resembles the film. Girl meets boy busking on the streets in Dublin and soon (a bit too soon?) the two are sharing intimate details of their lives and making music together. Of course, it's not so simple.
With his polished good looks, Steve Kazee as the male lead comes across as a bit too suave and content for a man who supposedly embodies a dispirited loner, and Cristin Milioti as his counterpart lacks some of Irglová's vulnerability - not to mention, her character's Czech background can sometimes feel forced ("I'm always serious. I'm Czech!" she kept repeating for laughs, in an exaggerated accent). But any reservations about the new cast evaporate as soon as they pick up an instrument and begin to sing. Imitating Hansard's distinctive growl of a voice is no easy task, but Kazee holds his own. And the supporting cast (especially David Patrick Kelly as the man's father) is charming.
Though, it is billed as "fun" and "life affirming," the musical, like the film, is just as heartbreaking as it is romantic. As circumstance would have it, he has an unfinished love in New York, and she has a small child and - though we never see or hear him - a husband. As much as they might want to, running away together is never really an option. But in this case, the unnamed characters' quiet resignation to their separate fates only raises the story's emotional impact.
The stage setting - the dimly lit interior of a pub - is minimal. With a few small tweaks, the audience is made to imagine a music shop, a flat, and in one scene, the Irish coast. But the bare bones staging adds to the warmth of the production. The typical marks of a big-ticket Broadway production - flashy scenery and overly produced music - are wisely omitted by director John Tiffany in favor of a more modest musical with a big heart.
In related news, Glen Hansard has a solo album on the way (that both Marketa Irglova and Cristin Milioti contributed to).
You can watch a montage video from the musical, below...
photos by Tim Griffin
Glen Hansard @ Hotel Vegan (BV-SXSW 2012)
Over 20 years in the making, singer songwriter Glen Hansard will release his first ever solo album, Rhythm and Repose, on Anti- Records June 19. Best known for his work with The Frames, The Swell Season and in the feature film Once, for which he won an Academy Award, Rhythm and Repose is Hansard's debut solo album and first album of new material since his 2009 release Strict Joy with The Swell Season. The album will be available for presale at http://www.anti.com/storeGlen Hansard previewed some of those new songs at SXSW where one of the shows he played was the BrooklynVegan day party at 'Hotel Vegan' on Thursday, March 15th. Some pictures and videos from his 12:45pm set are in this post.
In recent months Hansard has been seen in the documentary The Swell Season which has toured the film festival circuit this year, contributed two songs to the blockbuster soundtrack, The Hunger Games, and been active in the promotion of Once, The Musical which successfully opened on Broadway on March 18 to rave reviews, including the New York Times who explains, "what was always wonderful about 'Once,' its songs and its staging, has been magnified." Hansard will support the new record on a U.S. tour.
Rhythm and Repose is a result of Hansard's last year and a half of living in New York City. The album was recorded by Patrick Dillett (David Byrne, Arto Lindsay, Laurie Anderson) and produced by Thomas Bartlett (Doveman, The National, Antony and the Johnsons). The record features the musical talents of Brad Albetta (Martha Wainwright) on bass, Ray Rizzo on drums, Nico Muhly and Rob Moose on strings (Bon Iver, Y Music), David Mansfield on slide guitar (Dylan's Rolling Thunder Tour), Javier Mas (Leonard Cohen touring band) and half of Bruce Springsteen's current horn section. Assisting on vocals are Cristin Milioti (Once, The Musical), Sam Amidon, Marketa Irglova and Aida Shahghasemi (Marketa Irglova touring band).
As the above blurb points out, the Once musical is running NOW in NYC, though Glen does not personally act or sing in it.
Glen, who meanwhile is hitting the road with Eddie Vedder, will headline four select shows in June including one on June 29 at Beacon Theater. Tickets for the NYC show went on presale today, and will become available to all as of 9am on Thursday (4/5).
All tour dates, the new solo album tracklist, and a Once musical video, below...
It wasn't that long ago that Upright Citizens Brigade hosted the parody show 2Pac: The Musical ("Like Mamma Mia but with more rapping!"). Now it seems that Broadway is following suit, but this time with a straight face...
Casting has officially begun for a musical based on the life and times of hip-hop icon Tupac Shakur.To quote a tweet by Danny Brown, "a 2pac musical? .... whats next Biggie on Ice?".
Casting will begin for "Holler If Ya Hear Me" on March 4 in New York.
According to a posting on industry trade Playbill.com, "Holler If Ya Hear Me" is being directed by Kenny Leon and is described as an "American musical inspired by and featuring the music of Tupac Shakur."
Kenny Leon is a critically acclaimed Broadway director, who has won three Tony Awards. -[AllHipHop]
Gabriel Kahane's new musical February House will be at NYC's Public Theater May 8th-June 10th. The show debuted Feb 15th at Long Wharf Theatre in New Haven, CT, and the Hartford Courant, condensing its review to a Twitter-length blurb, called it, "A haunting, intimate chamber musical so special you want to wrap your protective arms around it." A TV spot and a teaser for the musical are below.
Before that gets to town, Gabriel Kahane plays a solo show at Rockwood Stage 2 on Monday, February 27th. Tickets are on sale. We've also got a few pairs to give away as well. Information is below. At the gig he'll be performing songs from his excellent 2011 disc Where Are the Arms (streaming on his blog), as well as other solo material and possibly some songs from the musical.
Gabriel's busy year also includes a premiere of one of his pieces by American Composers Orchestra on March 22nd at Carnegie Hall's Zankel Hall and an entire night dedicated to his music at the same venue on October 22nd.
As for the future, Gabriel told us, in a short interview you can read below, about the commissions and material for a new album he's been working on, and he says he's been contemplating a musical work based on David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest.
Read the interview, along with the videos and Rockwood contest info, below...
""Neither the David Bowie Organization, nor its co-publishers EMI Music and Chrysalis, has issued a license for a Bowie musical at the O2, as has been reported in the U.K. There are no negotiations pending for a long-running musical featuring the music of Mr. Bowie."
Swell Season @ Coachella 2011 (more by David Andrako)
....but not starring Glen & Marketa...
..."At the American Repertory Theater, the lead roles in "Once" were played by Steve Kazee ("110 in the Shade") and Cristin Milioti ("The Little Foxes" at New York Theater Workshop); Mr. Hart said that he hoped the two would continue with the production but that negotiations with the actors were in the hands of the Off Broadway theater.The Swell Season also has a documentary.
Jim Nicola, artistic director of New York Theater Workshop, said in an interview that it was too early to discuss casting but added that he was "greatly impressed" with the work he saw in Cambridge. As for the piece itself, Mr. Nicola said that loved both the film and the musical adaptation of "Once," in part because "they are snapshots of contemporary Ireland and not a sentimentalized view of Ireland."" [NY Times]
Kylie Minogue is preparing a musical based on her long career which should be ready by next year.That spectacle pops into NYC's Hammerstein Ballroom for three nights starting tonight (5/2). Check Ticketmaster for tickets.
Her creative director and stylist, William Baker, is co-writing the show with the Aphrodite star. "We're both working on the Kylie musical, using all her songs, which will hopefully be done next year some time. I can't wait!"
The Spinning Around singer added: "It's definitely happening. We've brought a scriptwriter in and are working on a few synopses.
But she admitted she was wary about reaction from the critics to the stage show. "Music critics are one thing but theatre critics are something else. I suppose if it doesn't work then that's it - it's a closed book.
As for a venue, "I think it will be here," she said, meaning London's West End.
The pop princess is midway through her second American tour, after finally playing the country for the first time in 2009. She is playing smaller venues to crowds of around 3,000, but has spared no expense bringing the full Aphrodite Les Folies stage spectacle to the US." [MTV UK]
"To celebrate the tour, Astralwerks Records will release a new exclusive digital EP North American Tour Bonus Edition on May 3rd. The EP consists of 5 live recordings, three from a semi-acoustic BBC Live Lounge session - "Can't Get You Out Of My Head," "All The Lovers" and "Get Outta My Way", and two recorded live in New York in October 2009 during Kylie's first North American Tour - "Better Than Today" and "Confide In Me". As a special fan treat the EP also includes a short film featuring behind the scenes footage of Kylie on tour plus original tour wardrobe sketches by Dolce & Gabbana. "The EP tracklist and all tour dates are listed below...
"The band is primarily notable today for their perceived ineptitude at playing conventional rock music; the band was described in one Rolling Stone article as "...sounding like lobotomized Trapp Family singers." As the obscure LP achieved recognition among collectors, the band was praised for their raw, intuitive composition style and lyrical honesty. Philosophy of the World was lauded as a work of art brut, and was later reissued, followed by a compilation album, Shaggs' Own Thing, in 1982. The Shaggs are now seen as a groundbreaking outsider music group, receiving praise from mainstream artists such as Kurt Cobain and Frank Zappa." [Wikipedia]A musical based on '60s girl-rock oddities the Shaggs will be coming to Playwrights Horizons on 42nd St in NYC in spring 2011. The show, written by Joy Gregory and Gunnar Madsen, premiered in LA in 2003 and played in NYC during the NY Musical Theater Festival in 2005. The new production will be co-produced by New York Theater Workshop.
More info on "The Shaggs: Philosophy of the World" at the NY Times, and videos are posted below...
photos by David Andrako
Fela! party @ Brooklyn Bowl
"The musical "Memphis" emerged as the early leader in the Tony Awards on Sunday night, while the film actress Scarlett Johansson won the first acting award: best featured actress in a play for her Broadway debut in the revival of Arthur Miller's "View From the Bridge."..Fela! unfortunately didn't win Best Musical, but its choreographer Bill T. Jones did take home the Best Choreography award Sunday night at the Tony Awards.
...Two rivals with "Memphis" for the best musical Tony, "Fela!" and "American Idiot," won two Tonys a piece before the telecast -- "Fela!" for costume and sound design, "Idiot" for lighting and scenic design. The "Idiot" winners each profusely praised the director of the show, Michael Mayer, whose lack of a nomination surprised many in the Broadway industry...
...None of the four nominees for best musical, for instance, have been hot sellers at the box office; the one that tied for the most Tony nominations, "Fela!," about the Afrobeat sensation Fela Kuti, has even struggled to cover its weekly running costs." [NY Times]
On Monday (6/7), BrooklynVegan co-sponsored a free Fela! Original Cast Recording release party at Brooklyn Bowl. The event was hosted by Fela! stars Sahr Ngaujah & Kevin Mambo and featured various performances including a DJ set by Questlove (who opened for Janelle Monae and Erykah Badu at Roseland that same night).
Jay-Z was rumored to be making an appearance at Brooklyn Bowl, but unlike at the Tonys (which he went to one night after performing at Bonnaroo), he did not show up. Many others did - the free event was "sold out" by around 9pm and went all night. More pictures from that party below...
Metric @ SXSW 2010 (more by Tim Griffin)
tonight in NYC
* comedy @ Union Hall
* Warm Ghost, Rowan @ Zebulon
* Metric, Bear in Heaven @ Terminal 5
* Aa, Wild Yaks, Steel Phantoms @ Cake Shop
* Arms, Honey, Translations, Mitre @ Death By Audio
* Kidrockers w/ The Dig, The Grates @ The Living Room
* Archipelago, Lux Perpetua, Alina Simone @ Silent Barn
* Descender, Wizardry, Music Hates You @ The Charleston
* Pistola, Fake Hooker, Manawi Thorn, Cloudblues @ Don Pedro
* The Postelles, Xylos, Infernal Devices (DJ) @ Brooklyn Bowl
* Silver Apples, Burning Star Core, Love Like Deloreans @ Coco 66
* The Lindsey Buckingham Appreciation Society, Fleetwood Mike @ Union Hall
* Lord Jeff, Invisible Circle, Guardian Alien, The Needy Visions @ Shea Stadium
* Thee Silver Mt. Zion, Sam Mickens' Ecstatic Showband & Revue @ Bowery Ballroom
* The Pharmacy, Golden Triangle, Electric Tickle Machine @ Rocks Off Concert Cruises
* Veronica Falls, German Measles,
Frankie Rose & the Outs, Surprisers @ Bruar Falls
* NineLives the Cat, Anton Glamb, Roofeo, 1Dad & DJ Fred Mertz, John Barera @ Glasslands
The Fifth Avenue Street and Record Fair is today in Park Slope. Check out the link to see who is playing on multiple stages near Southpaw and The Gate.
In case you were wondering whatever happened to the Spiderman Musical...
...New York Post theater columnist Michael Riedel is reporting that the in-question production is indeed on, with rehearsals starting this summer, previews beginning in October, and an official opening in November. The column also claims that the production has a new Green Goblin in Patrick Page, and producers are apparently seeing potential Mary Jane replacements. Producers for the show, and its publicity team, have not made any official announcements.... [EW]Veronica Falls play Bruar Falls tonight (but Frankie & the Outs don't despite being originally listed) (Prince Ruperts Drops have been added to the bill). Video from their show last night at Glasslands, below...
A video of Salome playing the BV day party at Emo's during SXSW this year, below...
A video of Excepter playing Knitting Factory last week, below...
"The new musical Fela!, which began life Off-Broadway, and the revival of La Cage aux Folles, earned 11 nominations a piece, the most of any production of the season. Memphis, a new musical by Joe DiPietro and David Bryan, earned eight nominations, including Best Musical. The other Musical nominees are American Idiot, Fela! and Million Dollar Quartet."" [Playbill]
Antibalas in Philly on 6/6 (more by Tim Griffin)
Much like The Roots, who they shared the stage with at The Roots Picnic in June, have been doing lately, Antibalas will play a NYC residency. Theirs will take place at Knitting Factory in Brooklyn over four Thursdays in December (they exclude Dec 24th), culminating in a New Years Eve show. Tickets are on sale for the 12/3 show, the 12/10, the 12/17 and the New Years Eve show. Antibalas is also scheduled to appear at the Winter's Eve Festival on 11/30 along with Joy Behar. Yes, that one.
Members of Antibalas are also notably a part of the Broadway musical FELA! based on the life of the Afrobeat legend, and produced by Jay-Z and Will Smith/Jada Pinkett-Smith.
A provocative hybrid of dance and Broadway musical, FELA! features the Afrobeat music of Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, a book by Jim Lewis... arrangements by Aaron Johnson and Antibalas with direction and choreography by Tony® Award winner Bill T. Jones...Lots of familiar faces on stage during the show which also includes Knitting Factory and Questlove (one of the producers) in its credits. Head on down to catch it at The Eugene O'Neill Theatre, but before you buy, make sure and use Antibalas's discount code FE4NFP9. Questlove (via Okayplayer) is running a promotion too.
FELA! uses stirring Afrobeat music (a blend of jazz, funk and African rhythm and harmonies), to tell the story of Kuti's controversial life as artist, political activist and revolutionary musician. Featuring many of Fela Kuti's most captivating songs and Bill T. Jones's visionary staging, FELA! is the most original new musical on Broadway.
Some related videos below...
photos by Tim Griffin
"Tony Award-winning orchestrator and composer Tom Kitt, whose Next to Normal is playing Broadway, has joined the creative team of the new Green Day musical American Idiot, as music supervisor.Green Day (headliner) and the Kaiser Chiefs (opener) completed their two-night run at Madison Square Garden in NYC last night (7/28). For Green Day it was their second multiple-night visit to the city this year. The first time was in much smaller venues. More pictures and Green Day's setlist from the show, below...
On July 28, Berkeley Repertory Theatre in California announced the creative team for the September-October world premiere of American Idiot, inspired by Green Day's Grammy Award-winning album of the same name and directed by Tony Award winner Michael Mayer, who collaborated with Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong on the project's story." [Playbill]
Nellie McKay @ LPR in December (more by Chris La Putt)
Pop Matters: What have you been up to musically since your last record?Nellie McKay plays 92YTribeca in NYC on Saturday, July 18th with Jesus H. Christ & The Four Horsemen of The Apocalypse and Life in a Blender. Tickets are on sale.
Nellie McKay: I'm doing the music and lyrics to a play based on the book and movie Election. This means I get to decide what parts are emphasized, which creates a lot of pressure on me. I hoping it turns out all right, but there are so many people involved in the making of any one of these shows that it's hard to know what fingers to cross.
Of course, being part of a group is also what makes it fun. I love writing for dancers. You don't have to worry about the lyrics. I think to write words without music must be so frustrating. It must be always be so good, so perfect. If you write with music, you can write complete gibberish, you know, "Ooooh ooh ooh, what a little moonlight can do," and you have a standard for all time.
All other Nellie McKay tour dates below...
by Andrew Frisicano
The Magnetic Fields @ Loews Theater (more by Chris La Putt)
MCC Theater presents Coraline, a musical with music and lyrics by Stephin Merritt of The Magnetic Fields. Merritt's delightfully creepy and playful melodies and droll lyrics tell the story of lonely Coraline's discovery of another parallel world that is identical to her own -- with some scary differences. An animated film version of the story, based on the popular children's book by Neil Gaiman (author of the international sensation Sandman and 2009 winner of the prestigious Newbery Award) is currently in theaters. The production, which was adapted for the stage by celebrated downtown actor/playwright David Greenspan is the world premiere of Coraline for the stage.Tickets for the show are on sale, as are VIP tickets. (There are also student & under-30 rush tickets available the day of each show). Samples of Merritt's Coraline songs can be heard above.
Performances will begin at the Lucille Lortel Theatre (121 Christopher Street, NYC) on May 7 and continue through June 20, 2009. [press release]
In other rock musical news:
Spider-Man Turn Off The Dark, featuring direction by Julie Taymor (Across The Universe, Frida, The Lion King on Broadway) with music and lyrics by 22-time Grammy Award-winners Bono and The Edge (from U2) will be holding open casting calls at major cities across the country starting next week. [press release]The NYC audition is scheduled for Monday, April 13th at The Knitting Factory. Details on the casting call and info for other cities, below.
Advance group tickets are already on sale for Spider-Man, set to open February 18, 2010 at the Hilton Theatre.
Other bands with musicals in the works include Green Day, who are turning their 2004 album American Idiot in a Broadway show. About the adaptation, Billie Joe said to Entertainment Weekly:
It's about coming of age in a really politically-driven climate. It's pretty chaotic, and it's not by any means a conventional way of [doing] a musical. And that's why I liked [American Idiot director] Michael Mayer so much because of what he did with Spring Awakening. When I saw that for the first time I was like, this is not your grandparents' musical. He's going for it. He has a sense of anarchy in the way he approaches his craft.Those aren't the only acts making the switch: Yeasayer guitarist Anand Wildeis working on a musical as well. And Amanda Palmer is in the process of producing an Airplane Over the Sea-themed high-school play, opening May 7th at Lexington High School in Lexington, MA.
Will the show have dancing?
Not "dancing" dancing. I don't know how to really explain it. It's got physical and violent moves. It's not like a Lion King thing. It's dirty and it's got a lot of heart and it's got a street mentality. There are no singing cats. No little girls with big curly red hair. It should be pretty cool, man.
Full Spider-Man press release below...