After much backlash regarding the casting of a new Pierre in The Great Comet of 1812, Mandy Patinkin, gave a statement to the New York Times on Friday withdrawing from the cast prior to his start date. See statement below:
“My understanding of the show’s request that I step into the show is not as it has been portrayed and I would never accept a role knowing it would harm another actor,” Mr. Patinkin said. “I hear what members of the community have said and I agree with them. I am a huge fan of Oak and I will, therefore, not be appearing in the show.”
This statement shocked the airwaves after Okieriete Onaodowan’s (Oak) contract was cut short due to a drastic decrease in tickets sales after Josh Groban’s departure from the show. Several actors/actresses voiced their concern and outrage for Oak, including 2016 Tony-Award-winning best Actress in a musical, Cynthia Erivo. See twitter feed below:
Co-Producer of The Great Comet, Howard Kagan, offered an official statement of apology following Mandy’s declaration.
“As part of our sincere efforts to keep Comet running for the benefit of its cast, creative team, crew, investors and everyone else involved, we arranged for Mandy Patinkin to play Pierre. However, we had the wrong impression of how Oak felt about the casting announcement and how it would be received by members of the theater community, which we appreciate is deeply invested in the success of actors of color – as are we – and to whom we are grateful for bringing this to our attention. We regret our mistake deeply, and wish to express our apologies to everyone who felt hurt and betrayed by these actions.”
With the buzz and controversy surrounding the show, the fate of the most Tony-nominated show of the season is up in the air. The question was and still is; but what about Pierre?
After much anticipation, the Broadway-bound production of Mean Girls has a cast of plastics that will take the stage October 31st at the National Theatre in Washington D.C. The book, written by Tina Fey, is set to music written by Fey’s husband, Jeff Richmond with lyrics by Tony nominee, Nell Benjamin. Tony winner, Casey Nicholaw, directs and choreographs.
Head plastic and Queen Bee, Regina George, will be played by Taylor Lauderman (currently in Kinky Boots) with Ashley Park (The King and I) as Gretchen Weiners, and Kate Rockwell (Bring it On) as Karen Smith. Erika Henningsen (Les Miserables) will play the leading role of Cady Heron. The cast will also include Barrett Wilbert Weed (Heathers) as Janis Sarkisian, Grey Henson (The Book of Mormon) as Damian Hubbard, Tony nominee Kerry Butler (Catch Me if you Can) as Ms. Norbury, Kyle Selig (The Book of Mormon) as Aaron Samuels, Cheech Manohar as Kevin Gnapoor, and Rick Younger as Mr. Duvall.
The ensemble of Mean Girls will include Stephanie Lynn Bissonnette, Tee Boyich, Collins Conley, Ben Cook, DeMarius Copes, Kevin Csolak, Devon Hadsell, Curtis Edwin Holland, Myles McHale, Chris Medlin, Brittany Nicholas, Becca Petersen, Nikhil Saboo, Jonalyn Saxer, Brendon Stimson, Kamille Upshaw, Zurin Villanueva, Gianna Yanelli, Iain Young.
Mean Girls will feature set design by Scott Pask, costumes by Gregg Barnes, lighting design by Kenneth Posner, and sound design by Brian Ronan with casting by Telsey + Company/Bethany Knox CSA.
Mean Girls the musical will follow the same plot as the highly quoted and beloved 2004 movie:
After living in Africa for most of her formative years, Cady Heron, has to face high school in all of its glory. After gaining the attention from Queen Bee, Regina George and her clique of “Plastics,” Cady soon learns that popularity comes with a price.
Following a wildly successful 2016-2017 Broadway season with shows like Dear Evan Hansen and Hello Dolly grossing in the millions each week, the 2017-2018 season is sure to give 2017 a run for their money with the opening of blockbuster hits including, Frozen, Spongebob Squarepants, and Harry Potter and The Cursed Child Parts I & II.
See the list below of all announced 2017-2018 season shows:
Previews Begin: July 28, 2017
Opening Date: August 10, 2017
Prince of Broadway
Samuel J. Friedman Theatre
Previews Begin: Augst 4, 2017
Opening Date: August 23, 2017
Time and the Conways
American Airlines Theatre
Previews Begin: September 14, 2017
Opening Date: October 10, 2017
Preview Begin: October 7, 2017
Opening Date: October 26, 2017
Vivian Beaumont Theatre
Previews Begin: October 5, 2017
Opening Date: November 2, 2017
Ethel Barrymore Theatre
Previews Begin: October 7, 2017
Opening Date: November 9, 2017
Circle in the Square Theatre
Previews Begin: November 9, 2017
Opening Date: December 3, 2017
Previews Begin: November 6, 2017
Opening Date: December 4, 2017
Samuel J. Friedman Theatre
Previews Begin: November 28, 2017
Opening Date: December 12, 2017
The Parisian Woman
Previews Begin: TBA
Opening Date: November 30, 2017
Farinelli and the King
Previews Begin: December 5, 2017
Opening Date: December 17, 2017
Previews Begin: February 6, 2018
Opening Date: March 8, 2018
Previews Begin: February 16, 2018
Opening Date: March 15, 2018
Previews Begin: March 2018
Opening Date: TBA
My Fair Lady
Vivian Beaumont Theatre
Previews Begin: March 22. 2018
Opening Date: April 19, 2018
St. James Theatre
Previews Begin: TBA
Opening Date: Spring 2018
Previews Begin: TBA
Opening Date: April 22, 2018
Previews Begin: Fall 2018
Opening Date: TBA
Following the buzz of Disney’s Live-Action adaptation of Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin steps into the spotlight. Disney announced the leading players via Twitter on Saturday, July 15th. The role of The Genie will be played by Two-time Oscar nominee, Will Smith. The title role of Aladdin will be played by Mena Massoud (Jack Ryan, Open Heart) with Naomi Scott (Power Rangers) as Princess Jasmine. Tony-Award-winning composer, Alan Menken, revealed that filming will begin this summer.
In addition to the classic score by Alan Menken, the live-action movie will feature a new song written by Tony and Oscar-Awarding winning dream team, Justin Benj Pasek and Justin Paul. The writing duo won an Oscar earlier this year for their song “City of Stars” in La La Land, and a Tony for Best Original Score in Dear Evan Hansen.
The film will be directed by Guy Ritchie.
If one of your three wishes is to see Aladdin The Musical click here for groups 20 or more!
Based on the dystopian novel by Anthony Burgess, A Clockwork Orange is set to run at New World Stages for a limited engagement run from September 25th through January 6th, 2018. Previews begin September 2nd. This production, directed by Alexandra Spencer Jones, will make its New York Off-Broadway debut after its sold-out, award-winning, London run. Jonno Davies, who led the London Cast, will make his New York Stage debut in the role of Alex.
A Clockwork Orange the novel, published in 1962, and the film released in 1971 are woven into the cultural fabric of both Britain and the United States. You don’t want to miss what The Stage, London is calling “Stylish, stylized, and drenched in sweat, the show has a breathless, exhilarating energy!”
The story of little Alex and his gang of droods is set to an indie-pop soundtrack with a contemporary performance style.
Check back here for more updates on A Clockwork Orange!
Hamilton‘s Okieriete “Oak” Onaodowan succeeded Josh Groban in the role of Pierre, in The Great Comet of 1812 on July 11th at The Imperial Theatre. Onaodowan is best known for originating the role of ‘Hercules Mulligan’ in Manuel-Miranda’s Pullitzer-Prize winning musical, Hamilton. See the Pierre Twitter Casting announcement from February, 2017!
Joining Oak at the “opera” is recording artist Ingrid Michaelson in the role of Natasha’s “good” cousin, Sonya. Michaelson will star in the production through August 15th, 2017.
See Michaelson and the production’s original Sonya, Brittain Ashford, sing ‘Sonya Alone’- a standout moment in the show.
Click here for tickets to see The Great Comet of 1812 for Groups 15+
Three-time Tony nominee Tony Shalhoub, and Indecent’s Katrina Lenk, will lead the cast of The Band’s Visit in the critically acclaimed transfer to Broadway this fall.
Shalhoub (The Price) will play Tewfiq—the leader of an Egyptian police band stranded in a small desert town in Israel, while Lenk (Once) takes on the role of Dina, one of the locals who take in the traveling musicians as the two groups form an unexpected bond. Both are reprising their original Off-Broadway roles.
Also returning to the show are George Abud (The Visit) as Camal, Bill Army (Act One) as Zelger, Tony nominee John Cariani (Something Rotten!) as Itzik, Andrew Polk (Burning) as Avrum, Rachel Prather (Once) as Julia, Jonathan Raviv (Martyrs Street) as Sammy, Sharone Sayegh (Mamma Mia!) as Anna, Kristen Sieh (The Fortress of Solitude) as Iris, Ari’el Stachel (We Live in Cairo) as Haled, and Alok Tewari (Awake and Sing!) as Simon.
The company will also include music director and pianist Andrea Grody, as well as band members Alexandra Eckhardt, Philip Mayer, Sam Sadigursky, Jeff Theiss, Harvey Valdes, and Garo Yellin. Complete casting will be announced at a later date.
Performances will begin October 7 at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre, where the musical is set to officially open November 9. To purchase tickets, click here.
“A visionary director. A Groundbreaking play. A story of love, espionage, and betrayal.”
What more could you want in a Broadway show? M. Butterfly, directed by Julie Taymor, is set to open in October 2017 at The Cort Theatre. Clive Owens will star in the revival of this intoxicating play.
For the Tony-Award-winning play’s first Broadway return, David Henry Hwang-playwright- will introduce new material inspired by the real-life love affair between French diplomat Bernard Boursicot and Chinese opera singer Shi Pei Pu that has come to light since the play’s 1988 premiere.
Check back with Your Broadway Genius for more updates on M. Butterfly!
The diner is in good company with Betsy Wolfe as ‘Jenna’, in Sarah Bareilles’ acclaimed musical, Waitress. Wolfe is best known for her work on Broadway as Ellen in Bullets Over Broadway, as well as for her Off-Broadway appearance as Cathy Hiatt in The Last Five Years.
Each ‘Jenna’ brings a different flavor to the role (Pun Intended.) With the addition of the Front of House diner set-up, Wolfe transports the audience with her layered performance. You don’t want to miss Wolfe’s delicious new take on a role previously performed by Broadway vet Jessie Mueller, and Composer/Lyricist herself, Sara Bareilles.
See Wolfe in the rehearsal process prior to taking center stage:
"Sara Bareilles has been so gracious and helpful and encouraging and I think that is the attitude that everybody takes. I’m coming into an already existing family."
Posted by Waitress the Musical on Friday, June 16, 2017
For groups 12+ click here for tickets to this heart-warming musical!
The world premiere of Jagged Little Pill, an original musical featuring songs from Alanis Morisette’s Grammy award-winning album, and book by Oscar-winning Diablo Cody, will take place at American Repertory Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts– May 2018. Diane Paulus (Waitress, Finding Neverland, Pippin) will direct.
Rumor has it, the spotlight is on Idina Menzel in the Actors’ Equity 29-hour reading of the musical adaptation of Jagged Little Pill. Though, A.R.T. has confirmed Menzel’s involvement, Idina will be starring in Joshua Harmon’s, (Significant Other) Skintight at The Public, June 2018.
The reading also features Menzel’s fellow former Elphaba Carrie Manolakos, Adam Kaplan, Lauren Patten, Nora Schell, Vishal Vaidya, and Libby Winters.
Jagged Little Pill will follow a modern, multi-generational family and explore gender identity and race relations.
Perhaps, if the A.R.T. production moves to Broadway, we will see the Wicked and Frozen star take the lead? For those who aren’t ready to “Let it Go,” check back here with more updates regarding Jagged Little Pill.