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Podcast: Vol. 137 – December 13, 2007

Hope you all are in the Christmas spirit  (or should I say the holiday spirit), because we have a grab bag of fabulous theatre gifts for you on this week's episode.  Welcome to Broadway Bullet, the season finale! ACT ONE:  Director Leigh Silverman drops by to chat about The Public Theater's newest production, "Yellow Face".  In celebration of the festival of lights William Finn comes into talk about "Make Me a Song", a new revue of his songs, playing at New World Stages.  We get to hear two songs of Mr. Finn's as well.  Also the president of CAMI Ventures LCC, Mark S. Maluso, heads into the studio to talk about their new work, "Jump". ACT TWO:  Grammy winning songwriter, Jeff Silbar, swings by the studio to talk about his first ever solo album, and also to perform live in studio for us.  Closing out our season finale Michaela Goldhaber, Co-artistic director of Flying Fig Theater, comes in to talk about their production of New Amsterdames and we hear a song from a musical in development, "1812". Of course we have all the news you need in Top of the Trades and The Callboard, but sadly Marty is still not with us, be ready for him to come back in full health on the season premiere in January. So what are you waiting for?  Jump on board the Broadway Bullet for holiday fun!

ACT ONE

ON THE BOARDS

Yellow Face

WHEN MISS SAIGON OPENED in 1991 a group of protestors picketed the casting of Jonathan Pryce as the Vietnamese Engineer.  One of those people was DHH, alter ego of theTony and Obie Award nominee, David Henry Hwang.  In his latest play, “Yellow Face”, now running at The Public Theater, Hwang offers a behind the scenes, comedically poignant glimpse of that time in his life, and the racial identity questions of self that it brought up.  Leigh Silverman, the show’s director, drops in to tell us all about the new show at The Public Theater by veteran Hwang.

For more information and tickets please visit: www.publictheater.org

THE CALLBOARD

Thursday (December 14) night’s episode of NBC’s “30 Rock,” Liz Lemon’s mother visits New York City and the two go see Xanadu on Broadway.  Margaret Lemon is played by Broadway vet, Anita Gillette. Check local listings for NBC channel and air-time. More Info Here 

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Tony-nominated and Emmy Award-winning actress Kate Burton and TV-actor Blake Bashoff, currently featured in the ABC-TV’s hit series, “Lost,” will join the cast of the eight-time Tony Award-winning musical Spring Awakening.

Burton joins the cast in the role of “The Adult Women” for a limited time, Friday, December 21 through Sunday, March 2, 2008.  Bashoff joins the cast in the role of “Moritz” on Tuesday, December 18, 2007.

In addition, it was announced that Lea Michele and Jonathan Groff will extend their contracts for six months through May 18, 2008.  Michele, who stars as “Wendla,” was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for her performance. Groff, who stars as “Melchior,” was nominated for a Tony Award, a Drama Desk Award and a Drama League Award for his performance.  More Info Here

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Steve Rosen (The Farnsworth Invention), Sarah Saltzberg (The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee) and David Rossmer (Fiddler on the Roof), in conjunction with The Zipper Factory, are proud to present the latest installment of “Don’t Quit Your Night Job,” the monthly comedy benefit featuring a revolving cast of Broadway and Off Broadway’s  brightest stars performing without a net. 

“Don’t Quit Your Night Job” is an evening of improv, music, original sketch comedy and backstage anecdotes which benefits Wendy Wasserstein‘s Open Doors Initiative. The next installment will take place at The Zipper Factory (336 West 37th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues) on Thursday, December 20 at 11:30PM.  Tickets, which are $20, are available in advance by calling 212-352-3101 or online at www.thezipperfactory.com.

 

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We covered the Fringe Musical, “Piaf” in Vol. 122, and it will be playing again at the Soho Playhouse on weekends through January 20th. The Vol. 126 interview also featured two exclusive, in-studio performances from lead actress, Naomi Emmerson. The transcript of the interview is also available HERE.

 

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Michael Gilboe, host of Broadway Bullet, is putting finishing touches on a new pop musical, “Cupid, the Musical” which will be produced as an internet show to be delivered through sites such as YouTube. He is looking for some great, young, non-union talent and will be holding auditions in the beginning of February. He is also still looking for key members of the production team including a costumer, choreographer and more. If you would like to find out more, see a cast breakdown and hear a montage of some of the music from the show, visit www.cupidmusical.com 

UP CLOSE

William Finn

HE’S ONE OF THE few men to win the Tony Award for both book and score, he’s got a hit show running on Broadway at The Circle in the Square Theater and also a new musical Revue at New World Stages, as well as working to bring new talent to the masses.  Needless to say William Finn is one busy man, but he found some time to swing by the studio to talk with us about his first musical revue, Make me a Song, playing at New World Stages, and a little about is philanthropy and writing process.  We hear “Passover” from Elegies, performed by Carolee Carmello and “I’d Rather be Sailing” from A New Brain, performed by Norm Lewis.

For more information about Make Me a Song please visit: www.newworldstages.com or www.makemeasongthemusical.com

Purchase Elegies at Amazon

Purchase A New Brain at Amazon or  

ON THE BOARDS

Jump

JACKIE CHAN DOES IT in the movies, with second takes and camera angles, but the Fringe Festival Favorite, Jump, does it live every night.  Jump (it’s not all about jumping, there is some, as well as somersaults, karate chops, and flips), is about a dysfunctional Korean family who hone their martial arts skills on each other.  Cami Ventures LCC’s president Mark S Maluso comes by the studio to talk about jump, now running at The Union Square Theatre, and what Cami Venture is all about.

For more information and tickets please visit: www.jumpnewyorkcity.com 

ACT TWO

TOP OF THE TRADES

Lincoln Center Theater has announced that Matthew Morrison will play the role of Lt. Joseph Cable, Danny Burstein the role of Luther Billis, and Loretta Ables Sayre in the role of Bloody Mary, joining Kelli O’Hara as Nellie Forbush and Paulo Szot as Emile de Becque in its upcoming production of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s South Pacific.The production, which will be directed by Bartlett Sher,  will begin previews Saturday evening, March 1 and open on Thursday, April 3 at the Vivian Beaumont Theater.  More Info Here 

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Though details of the contract have not been released, theatre-fans and tourists alike may be pleased to know that Local One – the stagehands’ union whose labor-stoppage halted Broadway for 19 days – ratified their new agreement with Broadway producers on Sunday, December 9. The contract will last five years.

Details of the contract, as explained by NY1, reportedly include: “A wage increase of nearly 23% over five years. The lowest paid stagehands, who make up 75% of the Broadway workforce, will get an extra four percent increase in the first year… In exchange, stagehands made concessions on certain work rules, including minimum employment levels. The League was able to decrease the minimum number of stagehands required to move productions into a theater from 22 to 17.”   More Info Here

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Michael Riedel of the New York Post reports Usher, who made his Broadway debut last season as Billy Flynn in Chicago may be headed back to The Rialto as the Golden Boy.

Reportedly: “Plans are afoot for a Broadway revival of the 1964 musical – based on Clifford Odets’ classic play – about a pianist who gives up his music career to become a championship boxer.  Usher is in negotiations to play the role, which was originated by Sammy Davis Jr.”

Composer Charles Strouse praised Usher’s performance skills, and while contracts haven’t been confirmed, Strouse assures Usher’s interest in the role is real. More Info Here

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This winter, Broadway’s record-breaking musical smash Chicago welcomes television icon John Schneider to the company in the role of slick criminal lawyer Billy Flynn for a nine-week limited engagement, Monday, January 14, 2008 through Sunday, March 16 at the Ambassador Theatre

John Schneider is a celebrated star of stage and screen, in addition to being an accomplished recording artist and philanthropist. Television audiences will quickly recognize Schneider from his roles in “Nip/Tuck,” “Smallville,” and as Bo Duke in the internationally acclaimed television series “The Dukes of Hazzard.” This March, he will appear in the new HBO drama series “12 Miles of Bad Road.” More Info Here

 

Listening Room

Jeff Silbar

GRAMMY WINNER JEFF SILBAR gave Bette Midler the wind beneath her wings, and now he’s trying to give himself wings with his first ever solo album.  For decades he has been writing hit songs for accomplished artist and with Timeline, he’s trying it on his own.  Jeff stopped by to tell us about going it alone and to share a few stories about his long career.  He also performs two new songs for us “Stepping Stones” and “Sexual, Social, Free-For-All”.

For more information please visit: www.jeffsilbar.com

Purchase the CD at    or CD Baby

In the Best of Company

Flying Fig Theater

A MISSING DEED TO one of the countries busiest cities, a hub of industry and education, the inventor of the doughnut, a first generation African-American farmer, and an army of beavers.  Are we talking about National Lampoons’ History of Manhattan?  No.  We’re talking about the newest production from Flying Fig Theater, New Amsterdames.  Michaela Goldhaber, Co-Artisitic Director of Flying Fig, drops in to let us in on this new show and what Flying Fig is all about.

For more information and tickets please visit: www.flyingfig.org 

 

In Development

1812 the Musical

We play the opening song, recorded at Broadway Bullet’s Studio.

Find out more and download many more free mp3s  at www.1812musical.com 

 

Listening Room

M.U.E. (Chip’s Lament) from 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee

Purchase at Amazon or

 

CURTAIN CALL

Roundabout Theatre Company’s limited engagement of Pygmalion will play its final performance on Sunday, December 16 at 2PM. This revival of George Bernard Shaw’s classic Pygmalion stars Claire Danes in her Broadway debut as “Eliza Doolittle,” Tony Award winner Jefferson Mays as “Henry Higgins,” Tony Award winner Boyd Gaines as “Colonel Pickering” and Jay O. Sanders as “Alfred Doolittle,” directed by David Grindley at the American Airlines Theatre

Pygmalion will have played 31 preview performances and 69 regular performances. Previews began on Friday, September 21, 2007 and opened officially on Thursday, October 18, 2007.

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