Peter Filichia, James Marino, and Michael Portantiere talk about Jagged Little Pill, Judgement Day @ Park Avenue Armory, Greater Clements @ Lincoln Center Theater, The Sorceress @ National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene, Tuesdays at 54 with Robbie Rozelle, Anyone Can Whistle @ The Hartt School, A Family Affair @ Kean University, and the passing of René Auberjonois.
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Peter Filichia | [email protected] | Facebook
PETER FILICHIA is a playwright, journalist, and historian with a number of books. His columns appear at Masterworks Broadway, Broadway Select and many other places.
James Marino | [email protected] | Twitter | Facebook
Michael Portantiere | [email protected] | Facebook
MICHAEL PORTANTIERE is a theater reviewer and essayist. He is also a theatrical photographer whose photos have appeared in The New York Times and other major publications. You can see his photography work at FollowSpotPhoto.com.
Conversation with Jonathan Groff, sponsored by the Drama Desk, on Thursday, December 12, 2019 at Ripley-Grier Studios, 520 8th Avenue.
Notes and links for the podcast.
Peter’s Trivia Answer
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PF + MP: Jagged Little Pill @ Broadhurst Theatre
JAGGED LITTLE PILL on Broadway at the Broadhurst Theatre (235 W 44th St., NYC). Featuring lyrics by seven-time Grammy Award winner Alanis Morissette and music by Morissette and six-time Grammy winner Glen Ballard, JAGGED LITTLE PILL is directed by Tony Award winner Diane Paulus (Waitress, Pippin) and features an original story by Academy Award-winning writer Diablo Cody (Juno, Tully). Movement Direction & Choreography is by Olivier Award winner and frequent Beyoncé collaborator Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, and Musical Supervision, Orchestrations and Arrangements are by Tony and Pulitzer Prize winner Tom Kitt (Next to Normal, American Idiot).
JAGGED LITTLE PILL is an exhilarating new musical inspired by the themes and raw emotions laid bare in Alanis Morissette’s seminal album of the same name. The Healys appear to be a picture-perfect suburban family — but looks can be deceiving. As secrets threaten to break them apart, the Healys must embrace difficult truths about themselves, and find the strength and love in each other to move forward, together. The original story is ignited by Morissette’s groundbreaking music – including such hits as “You Oughta Know,” “Head Over Feet,” “Hand In My Pocket,” and “Ironic” – plus brand-new songs written expressly for the show by Morissette.
Starring as “The Healys” in the Broadway production are Drama Desk Award Nominee Elizabeth Stanley (On the Town) as “Mary Jane,” Sean Allan Krill (Honeymoon in Vegas) as “Steve”, Celia Rose Gooding as “Frankie” and Derek Klena (Anastasia) as “Nick”; alongside Kathryn Gallagher (Spring Awakening) as “Bella,” Lauren Patten (Fun Home) as “Jo,” and Antonio Cipriano as “Phoenix,” all of whom reprise their roles from the musical’s world premiere at A.R.T. Completing the cast are Annelise Baker, Yeman Brown, Jane Bruce, John Cardoza, Ken Wulf Clark, Laurel Harris, Logan Hart, Zach Hess, Max Kumangai, Heather Lang, Ezra Menas, Kelsey Orem, Yana Perrault, Nora Schell, Kei Tsuruharatani and Ebony Williams.
PF: Judgement Day @ Park Avenue Armory @ 643 Park Avenue, through January 10, 2020
A Park Avenue Armory Production
By Ödön von Horváth
Adapted by Christopher Shinn
Directed by Richard Jones
Paul Steinberg, Set Design
Mimi Jordan Sherin, Lighting Design
Antony McDonald, Costume Design
Daniel Kluger, Original Music and Sound Design
Drew Levy, Sound Design
Anjali Mehra, Movement Director
Cast: Alex Breaux, Alyssa Bresnahan, Charles Brice, Cricket Brown, Gina Daniels, Harriet Harris, Maurice Jones, Luke Kirby, Tom McGowan, George Merrick, Andy Murray, Jason O’Connell, Susannah Perkins, Henry Stram, Joe Wegner, Jeena Yi
PF + MP: Greater Clements @ Lincoln Center Theater – Mitzi E. Newhouse, 150 West 65th Street, through January 19, 2020
Lincoln Center Theater’s production of GREATER CLEMENTS, a new play by Samuel D. Hunter, directed by Davis McCallum, opening Monday, December 9 at the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater (150 West 65 Street).
GREATER CLEMENTS features Edmund Donovan, Andrew Garman, Nina Hellman, Judith Ivey, Kate MacCluggage, Ken Narasaki, and Haley Sakamoto.
In Samuel D. Hunter’s GREATER CLEMENTS, the once-proud mining town of Clements, Idaho is rapidly disintegrating. As Maggie (to be played by Judith Ivey) prepares to close one of the town’s last remaining businesses, a visitor (Ken Narasaki) arrives on her doorstep, resurrecting long-buried hope and shame rooted in her family’s past and the town’s history. Now, for the first time in nearly fifty years, Maggie is forced to consider if the life she envisioned for herself at seventeen might still be possible today.
The production features sets by Dane Laffrey, costumes by Kaye Voyce, lighting by Yi Zhao, and original music and sound by Fitz Patton.
WEST SIDE STORY Cut Songs (Audio)
From a 2007 Library of Congress salute to “West Side Story,” musical material for the original production ultimately cut or altered: “My Greatest Day” (early version of prologue); “Like Everybody Else” aka “Kids Ain’t” (cut song for Anybodys, 5:32); “Mix” (for the rumble, 10:30); the discarded “bull fight” lyric for “I Feel Pretty,” 12:05; “This Turf Is Ours” (alternate for “Jet Song,” 12:59); “A Boy Like That” (early trio version with Tony, 14:00). Singers in this event: Stephen Paul Cramer, Eleasha Gamble, James Gardiner, Will Gartshore, and Tracy Lynn Olivera.
PF: The Sorceress @ National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene / Museum for Jewish Heritage, 36 Battery Place, through December 29, 2019
by Avrom Goldfaden
Directed by Motl Didner
Musical Direction by Zalmen Mlotek
Choreographed by Merete Muenter
In Yiddish with English and Russian subtitles.
A magical, musical fantasy starring an innocent young heroine and her dashing fiancè, a devious stepmother, and a scheming wicked witch. “The Sorceress” takes its audience into a world of illusion, intrigue, and suspense.
MP: Tuesdays at 54 with Robbie Rozelle
Tuesday, January 7: Kate Baldwin (Tony® nominee for Hello, Dolly!)
Tuesday, January 14: Amy Jo Jackson (Kinky Boots)
Tuesday, January 21: TBD
Tuesday, January 28: Anthony Nunziata, Jennifer Diamond (Ruthless), Joshua Colley (The Little Mermaid, Newsies)
Someone To Fall Back On by Jason Robert Brown
PF: Anyone Can Whistle and A Family Affair
In two days I traveled to two different states to see two obscure musicals. Well, maybe ANYONE CAN WHISTLE isn’t so obscure by virtue of its writers, but you know what I mean. This was on Friday at The Hartt School at the University of Hartford. John Pike directed with imagination and Calvin Bittner’s choreography was marvelous. Lucy Rhoades was a fetching Fay, Paige Buade a wonderfully conniving Cora and Isaac Kueber was able to make “With So Little to Be Sure Of” the beautiful song it is. And what brilliantly colored costumes by Stefanie Genda!
Then today I was at Kean University in Union, NJ to see A FAMILY AFFAIR, a Kander-without-Ebb musical. Dan Kutner expertly directed a staged reading where the voices of the three leads certainly surpassed the trio originally billed above the title. From Melissa Calicchio to Monique Ziegler, the 14-member cast shone. Moral of the story: Pay attention to what’s going on in your local colleges.
You may see some shows you’d never see elsewhere — and I hope they’re all as good as these two productions.
The Hartt School is the comprehensive performing arts conservatory of the University of Hartford located in West Hartford, Connecticut, United States, that offers degree programs in music, dance, and theatre.
University of Hartford, West Hartford, CT
Kean University, Union, New Jersey 07083
Broadway Memorial for Hal Prince is tomorrow at Majestic
MP: René Auberjonois
René Auberjonois, a ‘Deep Space Nine’ Star, Dies at 79 By Neil Genzlinger
The busy character actor was also known for “Benson,” “Boston Legal” and several Broadway roles.
Film and Television:
Michael’s Music Moment:
“You Oughta Know” Original Broadway Cast | Jagged Little Pill
Someone to Fall Back On by Jason Robert Brown
Other Music: Memories from www.bensound.com
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