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PRESS RELEASE: ROCKTOPIA TO PLAY BROADWAY!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Vivacity Media Group
212-812-1483

INTERNATIONAL MUSIC SENSATION 

TO PLAY BROADWAY

6 EPIC WEEKS ONLY

AT THE BROADWAY THEATRE

MARCH 20 – APRIL 29, 2018

AMERICAN EXPRESS® CARD MEMBERS CAN PURCHASE TICKETS BEFORE THE GENERAL PUBLIC BEGINNING MONDAY, OCTOBER 30 AT 10AM THROUGH MONDAY, NOVEMBER 6 AT 9:59AM

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TICKETS ON SALE TO AUDIENCE REWARDS MEMBERS
BEGINNING MONDAY, NOVEMBER 6, 2017 AT 10AM

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GENERAL ON-SALE BEGINS
MONDAY, NOVEMBER 13, 2017 AT 10AM
 

Rocktopia creates a world where Mozart and Led Zeppelin coexist”

– Chicago Tribune 

(NEW YORK – October 11, 2017)This spring, the international music sensation ROCKTOPIA will rock Broadway for six epic weeks, March 20 – April 29, 2018 at The Broadway Theatre (1681 Broadway). ROCKTOPIA is a musical revolution that celebrates the fusion of the best rock songs of the past century with some of the greatest classical music ever written. ROCKTOPIA showcases the works of musical innovators including Mozart, Queen, Beethoven, Journey, Handel, U2, Tchaikovsky, Pink Floyd, Heart, Rachmaninoff, Foreigner, Copland, The Who and more. 

Created through the unique vision of vocalist and recording artist Rob Evan and Maestro Randall Craig Fleischer, a pioneer in the fusion of symphonic rock and world music, ROCKTOPIA delivers one-of-a-kind, spine-tingling musical arrangements with insanely talented lead vocalists, a 5-piece rock band, a choir of 40, and an orchestra of 20.

Developed over eight years, ROCKTOPIA is inspired by the idea that if Beethoven or Mozart were alive today, they would be modern-day rock stars. With extensive knowledge of both genres, Evan and Fleisher looked for common themes, potency, and emotional resonance in the songs before fusing them together to create explosive and moving new musical arrangements.  

“We love both classical music and classic rock. There are so many parallels between the genres and between the “rock stars” who composed and performed them,” says Evan. “With Rocktopia, we want to break down barriers and any preconceived notion of what either genre is about – and electrify and inspire lovers of either musical styles with these completely original new pieces.”

The groundbreaking live concert will be performed by a celebrated, diverse array of rock, Broadway, and opera vocalists: Rob Evan (Broadway: Les Miserables, Jekyll & Hyde and more, multi-platinum recording artist); Chloe Lowery (Chris Botti, Yanni’sVoices);  Tony Vincent (Broadway: American Idiot, RENT, NBC’s “The Voice”); Kimberly Nichole (NBC’s “The Voice,” performs with Janelle Monae, Slash, Joe Walsh, The Heavy); and featuring Alyson Cambridge (The Merry Widow atThe Met, Madame Butterfly, La Boheme, Show Boat). The world-class musicians featured in the ROCKTOPIA band include Grammy and Emmy Award nominated violinist Máiréad Nesbitt (Celtic Woman, Lord of the Dance); acclaimed guitarist Tony Bruno (MD & guitar for Enrique Iglesias & Rihanna, “America’s Got Talent”); pianist Henry Aronson (MD/Conductor/keys for entire Broadway run of Rock of Ages, The Who’s Tommy); bass player Mat Fieldes (Joe Jackson’s Grammy winning album Symphony No. 1, the Gorillaz, Book of Mormon); and drummer Alex Alexander (David Bowie, Jimmy Cliff, Ritchie Blackmore). An additional 40-person choir and a 20-person orchestra enhance every performance of ROCKTOPIA. 

An inaugural performance of the show, “Rocktopia: Live from Budapest” produced by Two Hands Entertainment/Jeff Rowland, was recorded in front of a live audience in June 2016 at the 19th century Hungarian State Opera House for PBS. It was performed with the Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra with six vocalists, a five-piece rock band, the Hungarian State Opera Chorus, and the Jazz and More Choir. ROCKTOPIA has since toured over twenty cities in the United States, featuring local symphonies and choirs across the country. 

ROCKTOPIA is produced by ROCKTOPIA Broadway LLC (William Franzblau, Executive Producer and Maggie Seidel-Laws, Associate Producer) in association with HUGHES WALL LLC.  Additional cast, creative team, and the New York orchestra and choirs that will join each performance, will be announced at a later date.

American Express® Card Members can purchase tickets before the general public beginning Monday, October 30 at 10am (EST) through Monday, November 6 at 9:59am.  Beginning on Monday, November 6 at 10AM, tickets will be available exclusively to Audience Rewards Members via AudienceRewards.com.  Tickets will go on sale to the general public on Monday, November 13 at 10AM via Telecharge.com. Special student pricing, beginning at $39, will be available for the duration of the run.  

Performance schedule, complete creative team, and opening night will be announced shortly.

For Performance Photos, visit: http://bit.ly/2yeP6PJ

For Video, visit:http://bit.ly/2g8tFpI 

WWW.ROCKTOPIA.COM

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

BIOGRAPHIES:

ROB EVAN (Co-Creator, Vocalist) is a highly accomplished actor, singer, and producer with more than 20 years of professional experience in the entertainment industry. He has performed in seven leading roles on New York stages including the original Broadway cast of Jekyll & Hyde, playing the title roles more than 1,000 times over three years. His rendition of “This Is the Moment” was performed at numerous prestigious events, including the 2001 Inaugural Gala for President George W. Bush, the Millennium Independence Day US Naval Revue aboard the USS JFK for President Clinton, the Millennium World Forum Conference with speaker Mikhail Gorbachev, and the New York City Mayor’s Inaugural Gala. Rob also appeared on Broadway as Jean Valjean in Les Miserable, Kerchak in Disney’s Tarzan, The Dentist in Little Shop of Horrors, and Count von Krolock in Jim Steinman’s Dance of the Vampires. Off-Broadway, Rob created the roles of The Dancin’ Kid in Johnny Guitar and the hero Miles Hendon in The Prince and the Pauper. Rob is a member of the multi-platinum-selling band, Trans-Siberian Orchestra. He can be heard on TSO’s The Lost Christmas Eve and Night Castle, which debuted at #5 on Billboard’s Top 100. He was also the lead vocalist for Jim Steinman’s The Dream Engine, and recently released the debut album from his progressive rock band, Menrva Realm. Rob has also been a regularly featured soloist for over 40 symphonies around the world, including appearances in San Francisco, San Diego, Atlanta, Chicago, Hong Kong, and the Czech Republic.

 

RANDALL CRAIG FLEISCHER (Co-Creator) Active as a composer and arranger, Mr. Fleischer is a national leader in the fields of symphonic rock and world music fusion. His works and arrangements have been played by many world-renowned orchestras including the Boston Pops, San Francisco Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Hong Kong Philharmonic, San Diego Symphony, China Philharmonic, Atlanta Symphony, the National Symphony, and many others. Fleischer has also worked with artists such as John Densmore (The Doors), Natalie Merchant, Blondie, Ani DiFranco, John Cale (Velvet Underground) Garth Hudson (The Band), Kenny Rogers, Chris Baron (Spin Doctors), and Native American artists R. Carlos Nakai, Burning Sky, The Hawk Project, The Benaly Family, and others. Mr. Fleischer’s operatic repertoire includes productions of La Boheme, Turandot, Tosca, Madama Butterfly, Don Giovanni, La Traviata, and others. Fleischer received his Bachelor of Music Education from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and has studied conducting with Leonard Bernstein, Otto Werner Mueller, Seiji Ozawa, Riccardo Muti, Gustav Meier, and others. He first came to international attention when, at the National Symphony Orchestra, he conducted Dvorak’s “Cello Concerto” with Mstislav Rostropovich as soloist. In December of 1992, Mr. Fleischer conducted an ensemble of more than 70 cellos, including YoYo Ma, and a 190 voice chorus in a tribute to Rostropovich, broadcast on CBS with then-President and Mrs. Bush in attendance. In 1993, Mr. Fleischer conducted a private concert for Pope John-Paul at the Vatican. The Pontiff awarded Mr. Fleischer a medal for his achievements in music. A passionate educator, Fleischer has co-authored several instructional pieces for children in collaboration with his wife, comedian Heidi Joyce, which were premiered by the National Symphony Orchestra, including three rap pieces for orchestra. Mr. Fleischer lives in Los Angeles with his wife Heidi and daughter Michaela.

 

CHLOE LOWERY (Vocalist) is an American singer, dancer, actress, and songwriter born in Largo, Florida. At age12 she was signed to RCA Records, and soon after being signed was featured on two movie soundtracks, Boys and Girl and Joe Somebody. She went on to tour with Big Brother and the Holding Company and work with world-renowned producer Ric Wake, which then led to a collaboration with Yanni on the 2009 Yanni Voices Project. After tours of the U.S. and Mexico with Yanni, she signed to Disney/Hollywood Records as a solo artist. Chloe has since been featured on three Yanni records: 2013’s Truth of Touch, 2014’s Inspirato, and 2016’s Sensuous Chill. Chloe joined multi-platinum selling rock band Trans-Siberian Orchestra performing as Theresa on their Beethoven’s Last Night Tours and continues to work with the band both in the studio and live on stage. Lowery has also toured with Chris Botti, performed with the New York City Ballet as a featured vocalist, and contributed her talents to collaborations with artists like Everclear. Chloe will independently release a solo project in early 2018.

 

ALYSON CAMBRIDGE (Vocalist) is one of the most diverse and compelling vocal artists on the scene today. Her rich, warm soprano, combined with her strikingly beautiful stage presence and affecting musical and dramatic interpretation, have brought her over a decade of successes on the world’s leading opera and concert stages, including The Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Washington National Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Carnegie Hall, London’s Royal Albert Hall, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Vienna Konzerthaus, among others, as well as recent debuts Paris , Warsaw, Beijing, and other musical capitals throughout Europe and Asia.  Her repertoire includes the beloved heroines of Puccini, Verdi, and Mozart (Mimi, Madama Butterfly, Donna Elvira, Violetta, and Micaëla among them) as well as successful forays into the crossover, Broadway and jazz repertoire, most notably with award-winning and critically-acclaimed performances of Julie in Show Boat and Vi in Gershwin’s rarely performed jazz-opera Blue Monday.  Alyson’s debut album, “From the Diary of Sally Hemings,” a song-cycle by acclaimed American composer William Bolcom, premiered at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall to rave reviews, and her newest album, Until Now, a mix of jazz, pop, and musical theater standards was released in January 2016 on the Naxos imprint Suite 28 Records, and is available on iTunes, Amazon and Spotify.

 

TONY VINCENT (Vocalist) Best known for his appearance on NBC’s “The Voice”, Tony Vincent is a recording artist, actor and producer. In 1993 Vincent started his own record company, Adobe Flats, writing and producing the EP Love Falling Down that led to a recording contract with EMI records. The two solo albums that followed, Tony Vincent & One Deed, produced six #1 Billboard radio singles. Soon after, Vincent took a detour into rock-based theater, starring on Broadway in RENT (Mark, Roger), Jesus Christ Superstar (Judas Iscariot) and Green Day’s American Idiot (St. Jimmy). He played Simon Zealotes in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s film remake of Jesus Christ Superstar, and is also featured in the film Andrew Lloyd Webber: Masterpiece. Vincent originated the role of Galileo Figaro in the rock band Queen’s We Will Rock You in London’s West End, and opened the U.S. production. He also fronted the band itself, performing “Bohemian Rhapsody” for Queen Elizabeth II, with a live audience of over 1 million people at Buckingham Palace. Vincent independently released two more albums, A Better Way, produced by Adam Anders (“Glee”), and the self-produced In My Head, following his appearance on NBC’s “The Voice”. He is currently headlining the North American symphony tour of The Music of David Bowie, and working as a record producer at his New York recording studio, Soundshop 370.

 

KIMBERLY NICHOLE (Vocalist) exploded onto the national scene on season 8 of “The Voice”, earning praise from Pharrell Williams, Christina Aguilera, Lionel Richie, Mark Ronson and Reba McEntire, with her show-stopping performances, stylish presence and vocal power. Her covers ranked on iTunes’ Top 20 three weeks in a row and made the Billboard 100 Charts. Over the course of her career, Nichole has share the stage with Slash (Guns N Roses), Living Colour, Alice Smith, Janelle Monae, Nona Hendryx (Labelle), Aloe Blacc, Bilal, Joe Walsh (The Eagles) and Jon Bon Jovi. Her mesmerizing performance style has captured the attention and support of Quincy Jones, songwriting duo Ashford & Simpson and fashion savant Andre Leon Talley, who featured her in an issue of Vogue. Her original music has been featured on MTV, VH1, BET, LOGO, Lifetime and Showtime, and Tony award winning director George C. Wolfe personally selected her to be the featured rock performer in his film You Are Not You, which stars Oscar-winner Hilary Swank.  She’s been crowned ‘Mistress of Ceremonies’ at New York City’s wildly popular private night club ‘The Box’, and has received ASCAP Foundation’s “Reach Out and Touch” Award, given to promising songwriters. She most recently was featured in the NETFLIX, Ezra Koeing-created (Vampire Weekend) anime series “Neo Yokio” (starring Jaden Smith, Jude Law, Susan Sarandon and more).

 

TONY BRUNO (Guitar) became the music director and guitarist for Enrique Iglesias in 1999. Since then, he has put together six of Iglesias’s tours and done countless TV performances. In 2005, he partnered with choreographer Tina Landon to create the show for artist Anastacia’s Live at Last tour. He has also worked with artists such as Rihanna, Enrique Iglesias, K’naan, Karmin, Delta Goodrem, and many others. TV production credits include “America’s Got Talent”, “X-Factor”, “American Music Awards,” “Top Of The Pops”, “MTV Music Awards”, TRL, “Wetten Das”, and others. His song “Daylight in Your Eyes” for German artists No Angels was the second best-selling German single of all time. Tony has worked on writing songs with the world’s top songwriters including Shelly Peiken, Lindy Robbins, Kara DioGuardi, and Ty Lacy. In the studio, Tony has lent his extraordinary guitar skills to numerous hit records with top producers like Ted Templeman, Bob Rock, and Desmond Child.

 

MÁIRÉAD NESBITT (Violin) For more than a decade, Máiréad Nesbitt has enchanted millions of fans around the world as the Celtic violinist and founding member of the globetrotting music phenomenon Celtic Woman. Loyal fans of all ages, across geographical and cultural boundaries far beyond the musical heritage of Ireland, have adored her beguiling stage presence and versatile instrumental talents. As the featured violin soloist on all 11 Celtic Woman albums, each title achieved the coveted #1 slot on the Billboard World Music Chart, an Emmy-nomination for one of her companion television specials and her most recent album with the group, “Destiny”, received a 2017 Grammy Nomination for Best World Music Album. Máiréad is also an accomplished solo artist who released her newest album Hibernia at the end of 2016. Upon its release, Hibernia charted on four different Billboard charts, including the World Music, Classical Crossover, Heatseekers, and Classical charts. Máiréad also released a special album, reaching back to her family roots called “ The Nesbitt Family – Devils Bit Sessions”. In 2017 the “Máiréad Nesbitt Celtic Violin Collection” was launched and is available exclusively online and in specialty shops in North America and Ireland.  Máiréad has appeared with the City Chamber Orchestra of Hong Kong, Berne Symphony Orchestra, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and more. 

 

HENRY ARONSON (Piano) is among the most in-demand music directors in the Broadway theatre. He was the music director/conductor/keyboardist for the Broadway run of Rock of Ages. Also on Broadway, he was music director for Grease, The Times They Are A-Changin, In My Life, Little Shop of Horrors, Rent, Rocky Horror Show and Starmites; associate conductor of Cry Baby, Good Vibrations, Parade, Saturday Night Fever, Mail and Prince of Central Park; and conducted The Who’s Tommy and On Your Feet; he also conducted and played many seasons of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. Off-Broadway, he conducted at Cagney, was music director of Once Around the Sun (Zipper), King Lear (Public Theater, starring Kevin Kline), The Wind in the Willows (New Victory), 3 Guys Naked From the Waist Down (Minetta Lane), and numerous productions at Playwrights Horizons and Naked Angels. He studied piano at Mannes College of Music, and received his Music degree from Columbia University. His musical Loveless Texas, which he wrote with his wife Cailín Heffernan, was produced this year by Boomerang Theatre Company at the Sheen Center in New York City.

 

MAT FIELDES (Bass) is a very active bass player on the New York freelance scene. He has collaborated with artists such as Jay-Z, Gorillaz, Joe Jackson, Ornette Coleman, John Cale, Peter Erskine, Jim Steinman, Sufjan Stevens, Steve Vai, PaquitoD’Rivera, Kristjan Jarvi, Joe Williams, Arturo Sandaval, Toni Tennille, Kelli O’Hara, and many others. Mr. Fieldes tours extensively as the solo bassist for Absolute Ensemble, an electro-acoustic crossover chamber orchestra, which performs at major venues worldwide. Broadway credits include: Mamma Mia, The Book of Mormon, Next to Normal, Billy Elliot, South Pacific, Mary Poppins, Kiss Me Kate, The Full Monty, Legally Blonde, and Saturday Night Fever,and Matilda. He has played with the New Zealand Symphony, New Jersey Symphony, Auckland Philharmonia, Brooklyn Philharmonic, Key West Symphony (Principal), Long Island Philharmonic, Westchester Symphony, Moscow Chamber Orchestra, New Zealand String Quartet, New Zealand Trio, Continuum, Bronx Arts Ensemble, and has recently appeared in major festivals in Mexico City, Bremen, El Paso, Adelaide, and Montpellier.

 

ALEX ALEXANDER (Drums, Percussion) is a “first call” session drummer/percussionist residing in New York. He has performed and recorded with artists such as David Bowie, Dido, Eminem, Ritchie Blackmore, Rickie Lee Jones, Jimmy Cliff, YoussouN’Dour, Joy Askew, Bernie Worrell from P-Funk, Bruce Springsteen, The Association, Toots and the Maytalls, Sophie B. Hawkins, J.C. Chasez from NSYNC, Montell Jordan, Willie Nile, Dougie Fresh, Bebel Gilberto, Julia Fordham, The Barrio Boyzz, Eljuri, Chaka Kahn, Buddy Miles, and more. Alex has also performed on many soundtracks for films, including the cult classic, The Search For One-Eye Jimmy, the multi-award winning HBO film, Liberty Kid, the HBO film, Forged, as well as the soundtrack to the Academy Award winning documentary, Born Into Brothels. Alex has invented an instrument called the Electric Djembe. Using African djembes, ethnic percussion, Shure wireless microphones, and custom Guitar F-X pedals and loop boxes, Alex creates sounds that range from drum machine emulation to ambient keyboard pads and washes. His unique blend of hand percussion and guitar effects pedals can be heard on television and film soundtracks, which he composes through his production company, Perpetual Motion Productions.

__________________________________________ 

Whitney Holden Gore
Vivacity Media Group
1650 Broadway, Suite 609, New York, NY 10019
212-812-1483 

    

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Brought to you by the NEW www.broadwaykingdom.com

For more info on Elli -- The King of Broadway www.thekingofbroadway.com
Facebook | Twitter | IMdB | Actors Access

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An Interview with Broadway’s Tony Sheldon

Oh BroadwayKingdom, what a thrill to be able to present to you
An Interview with the amazing
Tony Sheldon
star of the original Australian & Broadway productions of
“Priscilla Queen of the Desert”
and recently starred in Broadway’s “Amélie”
In this very fun interview Tony shares the story of his life and career, so far, and breaks some exciting news about the upcoming 10th Anniversary Australian National Tour of “Priscilla, Queen of the Desert”!
So get a beverage, make yourself comfortable and watch and enjoy…

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Brought to you by the NEW www.broadwaykingdom.com

For more info on Elli -- The King of Broadway www.thekingofbroadway.com
Facebook | Twitter | IMdB | Actors Access

For more interviews & reviews go to www.broadwaykingdom.com

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PRESS RELEASE: STARS IN THE ALLEY SOCIAL MEDIA HOSTS ANNOUNCED!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PHOTOS: Download Link

 STARS IN THE ALLEY
SOCIAL MEDIA HOSTS ANNOUNCED!
ALEX BRIGHTMAN and SIERRA BOGGESS

@ABrightMonster             @SierraBoggess

 Currently starring in
SCHOOL OF ROCK – THE MUSICAL

 TO BE SOCIAL MEDIA CORRESPONDENTS
AT THIS YEAR’S

#StarsInTheAlley
PRESENTED BY UNITED AIRLINES
IN LEGENDARY SHUBERT ALLEY
FRIDAY JUNE 3, 2016
12:30pm-2:30pm
RAIN OR SHINE! 

Free Outdoor Broadway Concert
Featuring Musical Performances and Appearances
From Over 30 Broadway Shows!
PRODUCED BY THE BROADWAY LEAGUE
SPONSORED BY UNITED AIRLINES

 New York, NY – (May 19, 2016) – 2016 Tony Award Nominee Alex Brightman and his School of Rock The Musical co-star, Sierra Boggess, have been named social media correspondents for the 2016 STARS IN THE ALLEY concert, presented by United Airlines. The pair will post on social media throughout the event, keeping fans up-to-date on all of the action behind the scenes and on stage.

 Stars in the Alley will be hosted by Sean Hayes and Mo Rocca. Sean Hayes will be starring in Broadway’s An Act of God and was nominated for a Tony Award for his performance in Promises, Promises and Mo Rocca is a Correspondent for CBS Sunday Morning and appeared on Broadway in the 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.

 Stars in the Alley will take place on Friday, June 3rd from 12:30pm-2:30pm in Shubert Alley, between Broadway and 8th Avenue and 44th and 45th Streets. To add to the festivities leading up to the Tony Awards, the free outdoor concert in the heart of the Theatre District will celebrate Broadway with star appearances and exciting performances from over 30 new shows and long-running favorites, accompanied by a 12-piece live orchestra.

 “Alex Brightman and Sierra Boggess are a dynamic pair on stage and they know how to engage fans in a fun and exciting way. We can’t wait to have them rock out as our social media correspondents!” says Charlotte St. Martin, President of the Broadway League. “Stars in the Alley is a celebration of the amazing Broadway season and we invite fans to join us in the festivities, counting down to the eagerly anticipated Tony Awards ceremony on June 12th.”

 “I’m so excited to serve as co-social ambassador alongside my School of Rock co-star Sierra Boggess at Broadway’s best block party – Stars in the Alley! The next best thing to rocking out at a free outdoor concert is following along with us online. Looking forward to see you there, one way or another!” says Alex Brightman.

 “I’m honored to be the social media correspondent this year at Stars in the Alley alongside my incredible co-star Alex Brightman,” said Sierra Boggess. “This is one of my favorite Broadway events of the year, and I’m thrilled to be a part of this special free concert!”

 “United Airlines is proud to be the official airline of the Broadway League and the presenting sponsor of Stars in the Alley. This celebration adds to the festivities leading up to the 2016 Tony Awards by bringing the excitement of the year’s memorable shows and incredibly talented performers to the iconic Shubert Alley in New York City for everyone to enjoy,” says Mark Krolick, Managing Director, United Airlines

 “Stars in the Alley showcases the excitement of musical theatre and the vibrancy of Times Square all at once. The opportunity to help bring great live music that is free to the public is the primary goal of the MPTF,” says Dan Beck Trustee, Music Performance Trust Fund.

 Follow Alex and Sierra:
@ABrightMonster & @SierraBoggess on Twitter
@ABrightMonster & @OfficialSierraBoggess on Instagram

 Alex Brightman received a 2016 Tony nomination for his uproarious role as Dewey in School of Rock-The Musical on Broadway. His other Broadway credits include Big Fish, MatildaWicked and Glory Days. As a writer, he has penned Make Me Bad (music & lyrics by Drew Gasparini), Everything In Its Place: The Life and Slimes of Marc Summers, and The Whipping Boy (music & co-lyrics by Drew Gasparini), an upcoming musical adaptation of the award-winning novel.

 Sierra Boggess currently stars in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s School of Rock—The Musical. Sierra made her Broadway debut originating the role of Ariel in The Little Mermaid, for which her performance received both a Drama Desk and Drama League Nomination for Outstanding Actress in a Musical, as well as Broadway.com Audience Award for Favorite Female Breakthrough Performance.  Sierra has also starred as Christine Daae in the critically acclaimed sequel to The Phantom of the Opera, Love Never Dies, for which she received an Olivier Award Nomination for Best Actress in a Musical for her performance.  Sierra later returned to the role of Christine for the The Phantom of the Opera’s 25th anniversary limited six-week engagement in 2013, rejoining the Broadway company a year later again as Christine.  Her other credits include It Shoulda Been You, Master Class, and most recently, she starred in Lincoln Center’s two night,  25th anniversary concert event of The Secret Garden; her other West End credits include Les Misérables.

Stars in the Alley information can be found at Broadway.org.

 The American Theatre Wing’s 70th Annual Tony Awards® will air on the CBS Television Network on Sunday, June 12, 2016 (8:00-11:00 PM, ET/delayed PT) live from the Beacon Theatre in New York City, hosted by Tony Award-winner James Corden. The Tony Awards, which honors theatre professionals for distinguished achievement on Broadway, has been broadcast on CBS since 1978. The Tony Awards are presented by The Broadway League and the American Theatre Wing.  

For more information on the Tony Awards, visit TonyAwards.com and Facebook.com/TheTonyAwards and follow @TheTonyAwards on Instagram and Twitter.

 The event is produced by The Broadway League. United Airlines is the title sponsor of Stars in the Alley® and is the official airline of The Broadway League and the Tony Awards. Live music sponsored by The Recording Industry’s Music Performance Trust Fund and Film Funds. The official hospitality partner is Junior’s Restaurant. The official media partner is The New York Times. Additional support is provided by The Shubert Organization and SL Green Realty Corporation.

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UNITED AIRLINES and United Express operate an average of nearly 5,000 flights a day to 342 airports across six continents. In 2015, United and United Express operated nearly two million flights carrying 140 million customers. United is proud to have the world’s most comprehensive route network, including U.S. mainland hubs in Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. United operates more than 700 mainline aircraft, and this year, the airline anticipates taking delivery of 20 new Boeing aircraft, including 737 NGs, 787s and 777s. The airline is a founding member of Star Alliance, which provides service to 192 countries via 28 member airlines. Approximately 84,000 United employees reside in every U.S. state and in countries around the world. For more information, visit united.com, follow @United on Twitter or connect on Facebook. The common stock of United’s parent, United Continental Holdings, Inc., is traded on the NYSE under the symbol UAL. 

THE MUSIC PERFORMANCE TRUST FUND (MPTF) was established in 1948 as a nonprofit independent public service organization whose mission includes contributing to the public knowledge and appreciation of music, as well as making music a part of every child’s life experience. Headquartered in New York City, the tax-exempt MPTF, operating under section 501(c) 3 of the Internal Revenue Code, evolved from a landmark collective bargaining agreement between the American Federation of Musicians and the major recording companies of the day. Today the MPTF is a vital organization that brings music to the public and supplements the income of musicians, all at no cost to those receiving this precious gift of music.

THE BROADWAY LEAGUE (Charlotte St. Martin, President), founded in 1930, is the national trade association for the Broadway industry. The League’s 700-plus members include theatre owners and operators, producers, presenters, and general managers who present in nearly 200 markets in North America. Each year, League members bring Broadway to nearly 30 million people in New York and on tour across the U.S. and Canada. The Broadway League annually co-presents the Antoinette Perry “Tony” Awards®, one of the most coveted awards in the entertainment industry. Key League programs and resources include: Kids’ Night on Broadway®, The National High School Musical Theatre Awards (The Jimmys), Stars in the Alley®, Internet Broadway Database® (ibdb.com), Broadway.org, SpotlightonBroadway.com, Commercial Theater Institute (with Theatre Development Fund), as well as numerous conferences and forums for our members. TheatreAccessNYC (co-produced with TDF) is the one-stop website of accessible Broadway performances for theatregoers with disabilities. Broadway.org is the League’s official on-line headquarters for Broadway in NYC, on tour, and internationally. For more information visit BroadwayLeague.com, or follow The Broadway League on Twitter @TheBwayLeague and on Facebook at Facebook.com/BroadwayLeague. Download the free Broadway.org and IBDB mobile apps from the iTunes App Store or Google Play.

PHOTOS: Download Link

Press Contacts:
Elisa Shevitz, eshevitz@broadway.org, 212 703 0225

Martine Sainvil, msainvil@broadway.org, 212 703 0231

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Brought to you by the NEW www.broadwaykingdom.com

For more info on Elli -- The King of Broadway www.thekingofbroadway.com
Facebook | Twitter | IMdB | Actors Access

For more interviews & reviews go to www.broadwaykingdom.com

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PRESS RELEASE: PUBLIC THEATER NEWS! 2016-17 Season Announced

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THE PUBLIC THEATER
ANNOUNCES
2016-17 SEASON

TWELFTH NIGHT
PUBLIC WORKS MUSICAL ADAPTATION BY KWAME KWEI-ARMAH & SHAINA TAUB
DIRECTED BY KWAME KWEI-ARMAH
MUSIC & LYRICS BY SHAINA TAUB

THE GABRIELS: ELECTION YEAR IN THE LIFE OF ONE FAMILY
WHAT DID YOU EXPECT? & WOMEN OF A CERTAIN AGE
TWO WORLD PREMIERES WRITTEN & DIRECTED BY RICHARD NELSON

PLENTY
FIRST MAJOR NEW YORK REVIVAL BY DAVID HARE
DIRECTED BY DAVID LEVEAUX
FEATURING COREY STOLL & RACHEL WEISZ

SWEAT
NEW YORK PREMIERE BY LYNN NOTTAGE
DIRECTED BY KATE WHORISKEY

PARTY PEOPLE
NEW YORK PREMIERE BY UNIVERSES
(MILDRED RUIZ-SAPP, STEVEN SAPP, WILLIAM RUIZ AKA NINJA)
CHOREOGRAPHY BY MILLICENT JOHNNIE
DIRECTED & DEVELOPED BY LIESL TOMMY

TINY BEAUTIFUL THINGS
BASED ON THE BOOK BY CHERYL STRAYED
ADAPTED FOR THE STAGE BY & FEATURING NIA VARDALOS
CO-CONCEIVED BY MARSHALL HEYMAN, THOMAS KAIL, NIA VARDALOS
DIRECTED BY THOMAS KAIL

SAINT JOAN
WORLD PREMIERE MUSICAL BY DAVID BYRNE
DIRECTED BY ALEX TIMBERS

JOHN LEGUIZAMO: LATIN HISTORY FOR MORONS
NEW YORK PREMIERE BY JOHN LEGUIZAMO
DIRECTED BY TONY TACCONE

THE OUTER SPACE BY ETHAN LIPTON AT JOE’S PUB
MUSIC COMPOSED & PERFORMED BY
ETHAN LIPTON, VITO DIETERLE, EBEN LEVY, & IAN RIGGS
DIRECTED BY LEIGH SILVERMAN

GENTLY DOWN THE STREAM
WORLD PREMIERE BY MARTIN SHERMAN
DIRECTED BY SEAN MATHIAS
FEATURING HARVEY FIERSTEIN

13th ANNUAL UNDER THE RADAR FESTIVAL
TWO FREE MOBILE UNIT TOURS TO FIVE BOROUGHS

May 19, 2016 – Public Theater Artistic Director Oskar Eustis and Executive Director Patrick Willingham announced the line-up today for The Public’s 2016-17 season. For over six decades, The Public continues to make art that is of, by and for the people.  Fundamentally democratic, artist driven and radically inclusive, The Public stages Shakespeare and the classics, musicals, contemporary and experimental works in equal measure at its six theaters at Astor Place, including Joe’s Pub, at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, home of Free Shakespeare in the Park and in communities across all five boroughs with the Mobile Unit. The Public is also currently represented on Broadway with the acclaimed new play Eclipsed, and the award-winning musicals Fun Home and Hamilton.

The Public’s 61
st season will include a free Public Works musical adaptation of Twelfth Night at the Delacorte; two free Mobile Unit tours to the five boroughs; a new musical by David Byrne that reunites him with his Here Lies Love director Alex Timbers; new plays by Lynn Nottage, UNIVERSES, and John Leguizamo; a world premiere by Martin Sherman featuring Harvey Fierstein; the return of Ethan Lipton & His Orchestra to Joe’s Pub at The Public; the continuation of Richard Nelson’s election year cycle plays, The Gabriels; the first major New York revival of David Hare’s Plenty featuring Corey Stoll and Rachel Weisz; a stage adaptation of Cheryl Strayed’s beloved book featuring Nia Vardalos and directed by Hamilton’s Thomas Kail; the 13th edition of the acclaimed Under the Radar Festival; a dynamic Public Forum line-up; Public Studio; and the Emerging Writers Group Spotlight Series.

“The Public is firing on all cylinders and this season reflects the tremendous diversity of our work,” said Artistic Director Oskar Eustis. “From a major revival of one of our iconic masterpieces of the last century, Plenty; to the latest brilliant workings of David Byrne and Alex Timbers, Saint Joan; from the climax of Richard Nelson’s astounding Gabriel family plays; to the premiere of Lynn Nottage’s Sweat, this season is as exciting as New York itself. It is a season that embraces American history in all its diversity, from the revolutionary experience of Party People to the gorgeous and elegiac Gently Down the Stream, and the amazing John Leguizamo’s Latin History For Morons. Two beautifully intimate pieces round out our season: Ethan Lipton’s sequel to the Obie Award-winning No Place to Go, The Outer Space, and Tiny Beautiful Things. Tiny Beautiful Things is an adaptation by writer Nia Vardalos and director Tommy Kail of Cheryl Strayed’s beloved and powerful book.”

Joe’s Pub at The Public will welcome back several performance residencies, including Employee of the Month with Catie Lazarus, The Meeting * Hosted by Justin Sayre, Women of Letters, and The Losers Lounge. In addition, Joe’s Pub will again present annual favorites like Toshi Reagon’s Birthday Shows, DanceNOW and more. Programming initiatives like New York Voices, Pub Club, and collaborations with arts organizations Kimmel Center (Philadelphia) and Lott Entertainment @ MATCHouston will continue and expand this season. The Library at The Public is open nightly for food and drinks, beginning at 5:00 p.m., with an American menu created by Chefs Andrew Carmellini and Brian Plante, featuring local ingredients and New York influence.

THE PUBLIC THEATER MEMBERSHIP PROGRAM offers patrons the opportunity to purchase significantly discounted tickets to shows and events throughout the year for an annual $65 (tax-deductible) donation. Memberships are available at www.publictheater.org or by calling 212-967-7555. Tickets for the 2016-17 season will go on sale later this year.

THE PUBLIC THEATER’S 2016-17 SEASON:

Public Works at the Delacorte Theater (Free)
Musical Adaptation of Shakespeare’s TWELFTH NIGHT

Conceived by Kwame Kwei-Armah and Shaina Taub
Directed by Kwame Kwei-Armah
Music and Lyrics by Shaina Taub
September 2 – 5, 2016

Public Works, The Public’s local and national initiative that invites diverse communities across New York to join in creating ambitious works of theater, celebrates its fourth year at the Delacorte with an enchanting new musical adaptation of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night with music and lyrics by the critically acclaimed songwriter Shaina Taub. Professional artists and community members from partner organizations in all five boroughs perform together on stage in this love story that follows the young heroine Viola, who disguises herself as a man when she washes up on the shores of Ilyria. When Viola’s new boss, Duke Orsino, sends her to win over his unrequited love, the Countess Olivia, Viola’s disguise proves too effective, and the Countess falls for the young girl dressed as a boy instead. Artistic Director of Baltimore’s Center Stage, Kwame Kwei-Armah, directs this musical fever dream about love in all its many disguises, and transformative power of walking a mile in another’s shoes.

World Premiere Three-Play Cycle
THE GABRIELS: Election Year in the Life of One Family

Play Two: WHAT DID YOU EXPECT?

Written and Directed by Richard Nelson
Featuring Meg Gibson, Lynn Hawley, Roberta Maxwell, Maryann Plunkett, Jay O. Sanders, Amy Warren
September 10 – October 2; Opening Night: Friday, September 16, 2016

Tony-winning writer and director Richard Nelson returns to The Public this fall with the next play in his new three-play cycle, THE GABRIELS: Election Year in the Life of One Family. The second play, WHAT DID YOU EXPECT?, brings us back to the kitchen of the Gabriel family, with the country now in the midst of the general election for president. In the course of one evening in the house they grew up in, history (both theirs and our country’s), money, politics, family, art and culture are chopped up and mixed together, while a meal is made around the kitchen table.

First Major New York Revival
PLENTY
Written by David Hare
Directed by David Leveaux
Featuring Corey Stoll and Rachel Weisz
October 4 – November 6, 2016

One of the most celebrated plays in The Public’s history, David Hare’s PLENTY returns this fall in a riveting new production. This groundbreaking play, which first premiered at The Public in 1982, is the story of Susan Traherne, a fiercely intelligent British secret agent flown into France during the Second World War. Susan’s experiences among her war-time colleagues and over the two decades that follow are distilled in powerful scenes in this endlessly layered work about a woman of remarkable bravery, who cannot find in peacetime the values and relationships she cherished in war.

New York Premiere
SWEAT
Written by Lynn Nottage
Directed by Kate Whoriskey
October 18 – November 20, 2016

The Public presents the New York premiere of SWEAT, the “extraordinarily moving drama” (The New York Times) by the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright of Ruined, Lynn Nottage. With warm humor and tremendous heart, Sweat tells the story of a group of friends who have spent their lives sharing drinks, secrets and laughs while working together on the line of a factory floor. But when layoffs and picket lines begin to chip away at their trust, the friends find themselves pitted against each other in the hard fight to stay afloat. Kate Whoriskey (Ruined) directs this stunning new play about the collision of race, class, family and friendship, and the tragic, unintended costs of community without opportunity. 

New York Premiere
PARTY PEOPLE
By UNIVERSES: Mildred Ruiz-Sapp, Steven Sapp, William Ruiz aka Ninja
Choreography by Millicent Johnnie
Directed and Developed by Liesl Tommy
November 1 – December 4, 2016

UNIVERSES, the award-winning ensemble known for their fusion of theater, poetry, jazz, hip-hop, politics, down home blues and Spanish boleros, makes their Public Theater premiere with an explosive new work about the complicated legacies of the Black Panther Party and the Young Lords Org/Party. Directed and developed by Tony Award nominee Liesl Tommy, UNIVERSES created PARTY PEOPLE based on dozens of interviews with members of these groundbreaking, society-changing groups. PARTY PEOPLE imagines a present-day reunion at an art opening curated by two young counter culturalists; but the curators themselves have complex relationships with the Party members, who fought injustice and provided free food and medical care for their communities—often at the expense of the people who loved them most. Old wounds and generational divides collide in this astonishing, multi-media theatrical event about the price of being a revolutionary, and what it means for those who come after. Breaking the bounds of the expected, the members of UNIVERSES (Steven Sapp, Mildred Ruiz-Sapp and William Ruiz aka Ninja) and Liesl Tommy —invite audiences of every age, color and creed to join them as they continue to revolutionize American theater and explore the fight to bring power to the people, and the people to power.

World Premiere Three-Play Cycle
THE GABRIELS: Election Year in the Life of One Family
Play Three: WOMEN OF A CERTAIN AGE
Written and Directed by Richard Nelson
Featuring Meg Gibson, Lynn Hawley, Roberta Maxwell, Maryann Plunkett, Jay O. Sanders, Amy Warren

November 4 – November 27; Opening Night: Tuesday, November 8, 2016

In the exquisitely moving finale of his three-play cycle, Tony-winning writer and director Richard Nelson brings us back into the Rhinebeck kitchen of the Gabriel family as they await the results of the Presidential Election on November 8, 2016. WOMEN OF A CERTAIN AGE takes place in the course of a single night, eight months after we first meet the Gabriels. Patricia, the family matriarch, joins her children and daughters-in-law as they prepare a meal from the past and consider the future of their country, town and home. Paying tribute to the difficult year behind them, the Gabriels compare notes on the search for empathy and authenticity at a time when the game seems rigged and the rules are forever changing.

World Premiere
TINY BEAUTIFUL THINGS
Based on the Book by Cheryl Strayed
Adapted for the Stage by Nia Vardalos
Co-Conceived by Marshall Heyman, Thomas Kail, & Nia Vardalos
Directed by Thomas Kail
Featuring Nia Vardalos as “Sugar”
November 15 – December 18, 2016

Academy Award-nominated writer and actress Nia Vardalos (My Big Fat Greek Wedding) makes her Public Theater debut with a richly funny, uniquely uplifting new play she has adapted from the bestselling book Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed, the internationally acclaimed author of Wild. Vardalos is Sugar, the online advice columnist who thousands of people have turned to for words of wisdom, honesty and hope. As anonymous readers come to her with their deepest and most personal problems, Sugar—who ultimately revealed herself to be Strayed—finds a way to weave her own life experiences together with theirs, creating a beloved column about the monstrous beauty, endless dark and glimmering light at the heart of being human. Tony Award nominee Thomas Kail (Dry PowderHamilton) directs this powerful new play about reaching when you’re stuck, healing when you’re broken, and finding the courage to take on the questions which don’t have an answer.

13th Edition
UNDER THE RADAR FESTIVAL
January 4 –15, 2017

Curated by UTR Director Mark Russell, the 13th edition of this highly-anticipated 12-day downtown winter festival will bring together exciting artists from around the world who are redefining the act of making theater.

World Premiere
SAINT JOAN
Written by David Byrne
Directed by Alex Timbers
February 14 – March 19, 2017

Once upon a time, there was a girl who talked to God. She built a nation, and they burned her for it. Oscar, Grammy and Golden Globe winner David Byrne, lead singer of the Talking Heads and creator of The Public’s hit Here Lies Love, explores the electrifying, meteoric rise of Joan of Arc through the lens of a one-of-a-kind rock musical concert. Directed by Golden Globe winner Alex Timbers (Here Lies Love, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson), SAINT JOAN is a thrilling and provocative new show about challenging the powerful and believing in the impossible.

New York Premiere at Joe’s Pub at The Public
THE OUTER SPACE
Written by Ethan Lipton
Music composed and performed by Ethan Lipton, Vito Dieterle, Eben Levy, Ian Riggs

Directed by Leigh Silverman
February 24 – April 2, 2017

This season, Ethan Lipton (No Place to Go, Red-Handed Otter) returns to The Public with a new adventure in bittersweet and hilariously off-kilter storytelling. With music by Vito Dieterle, Eben Levy and Ian Riggs and performed by the quartet (Ethan Lipton & His Orchestra), THE OUTER SPACE follows one married couple as they leave the noise, pollution and overpriced rents of Earth for the vast beauty and treacherous terrain of the final frontier. But can they survive the journey? Leigh Silverman (No Place to Go, Well, Violet) directs this out-of-this-world musical about the sacrifices we make for sustainable living and love. The New York Times calls Obie-winning playwright and songwriter Ethan Lipton an “expert at keeping music, jokes and personal narrative tightly knitted together into one consistent human package.”

World Premiere
GENTLY DOWN THE STREAM
Written by Martin Sherman
Directed by Sean Mathias
Featuring Harvey Fierstein
March 14 – April 16, 2017

Tony winner Harvey Fierstein takes the stage this spring in a ravishing world premiere by one of the most influential playwrights of our time, Tony Award nominee Martin Sherman. Directed by Tony Award nominee Sean Mathias, Fierstein plays Beau, a pianist expat living in London, who meets Rufus, an eccentric young lawyer, at the dawn of the internet dating revolution. After a life spent recovering from the disappointment and hurt of loving men in a world that refused to allow it, Beau is determined to keep his expectations low with Rufus. But Rufus comes from a new generation of gay men who believe happiness is as much their right as anyone else’s, and what Beau assumed would be just another fling grows into one of the most surprising and defining relationships of his life. A remarkably moving, brilliantly funny love story that reflects the triumphs and heartbreaks of the entire length of the gay rights movement, celebrating and mourning the ghosts of the men and women who led the way for equality, marriage and the right to dream. 

New York Premiere
JOHN LEGUIZAMO: LATIN HISTORY FOR MORONS
Written by and featuring John Leguizamo
Directed by Tony Taccone
In a co-production with Berkeley Repertory Theatre
March 17 – April 23, 2017

Emmy and Obie Award winner John Leguizamo schools his son—and the rest of us—on the buried and forgotten history of Latinos in the Americas in this outrageously funny one-man show about uncovering the truth, and recovering from the past. Inspired by the near total absence of Latinos in his son’s American history class, Leguizamo embarks on a frenzied search to find a Latin hero for his son’s school project. From a mad recap of the Aztec empire to stories of unknown Latin patriots of the Revolutionary War and beyond, Leguizamo breaks down the 3,000 years between the Mayans and Ricky Ricardo into 90 irreverent and uncensored minutes in his trademark style. Artistic Director of Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Tony Taccone, directs this incendiary new show from one the most provocatively hilarious satirists in American theater.

ONGOING AT THE PUBLIC THEATER: 

FREE SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARK at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park is one of the cornerstones of The Public Theater’s mission. Since 1962, over five million people have enjoyed more than 150 free productions of Shakespeare and other classical works and musicals. This summer The Public will present THE TAMING OF THE SHREW (May 24-June 26), directed by Phyllida Lloyd; and TROILUS AND CRESSIDA (July 19-August 14), directed by Daniel Sullivan. Bank of America is the lead sponsor of Shakespeare in the Park.

PUBLIC WORKS is a groundbreaking new initiative working with community partner organizations in all five boroughs. It is designed to bring community partners into the full life of The Public through workshops, classes, dialogues, invitations to shows at The Public, visits from the Mobile Unit, and culminating in the creation of ambitious works of participatory theater. The community partner organizations of Public Works are Brownsville Recreation Center (Brooklyn), Casita Maria Center for Arts and Education (Bronx), Center for Family Life in Sunset Park, a program of SCO Family of (Brooklyn), DreamYard Project (Bronx), The Fortune Society (Queens), Military Resilience Project (all boroughs), and alumni partners Children’s Aid Society (Manhattan) and Domestic Workers United (all boroughs). Lead support for Public Works is provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Ford Foundation, New York City Theater Subdistrict Council, The Tow Foundation, and The Stavros Niarchos Foundation. Additional support is provided by the New York Community Trust, New York State Council on the Arts, The One World Fund, David Rockefeller Fund, and Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi, LLP. The Philip and Janice Levin Foundation provides support for The Public’s access and engagement programming. The LuEsther T. Mertz Charitable Trust provides leadership support for The Public Theater’s year-round activities.

MOBILE UNIT is a reinvention of Joseph Papp’s Mobile Shakespeare program, which began in 1957 to bring Shakespeare to the masses, evolving into the New York Shakespeare Festival and ultimately becoming The Public Theater. Now in its seventh year, it presents Shakespeare and other works for free to prisons, homeless shelters, social advocacy organizations, and other community venues throughout the five boroughs. The Mobile Unit has already toured Romeo & Juliet, The Comedy of Errors, Macbeth, Pericles, Measure for Measure, Richard III and Much Ado About Nothing. The Mobile Unit is made possible with the support of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, The Ford Foundation, The Stavros Niarchos Foundation, The Tow Foundation, and Bloomberg Philanthropies. Additional generous support provided by Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi LLP. The Philip and Janice Levin Foundation provides support for The Public’s access and engagement programming. The LuEsther T. Mertz Charitable Trust provides leadership support for The Public Theater’s year-round activities.

JOE’S PUB AT THE PUBLIC, named for Public Theater founder Joe Papp, opened in 1998 and plays a vital role in The Public’s mission of supporting young artists while providing established artists with an intimate space and superior acoustics to perform and develop new work. Joe’s Pub presents the best in live music and performance nightly, continuing its commitment to diversity, production values, community and artistic freedom. In addition, Joe’s Pub features seasonal dinner and bar menus from acclaimed Chef Andrew Carmellini and Brian Plante. As part of The Public’s programming downtown at its Astor Place home, Joe’s Pub showcases talent from all over the world, hosting approximately 800 shows and serving over 100,000 audience members annually. Joe’s Pub also offers unique opportunities like New York Voices, an artist commissioning program that provides musicians (Allen Toussaint, Ethan Lipton, Toshi Reagon, Bridget Everett and more) resources and collaborators to develop new theatrical works; and Pub Club, the venue’s new artist development program.

PUBLIC FORUM, now in its seventh season, brings together talented members of the theater community and interesting individuals from the arts, media, politics, and society to discuss, debate, and further explore the ideas present on The Public Theater’s stages. Alec Baldwin, Anne Hathaway, Cynthia Nixon, Sam Waterston, Jeremy McCarter, and former NEA Chair Rocco Landesman have hosted its programs, which have featured insights and performances from the likes of Uzo Aduba, Christine Baranski, David Brooks, David Byrne, Jessica Chastain, Matt Damon, E.L. Doctorow, James Earl Jones, Tony Kushner, Wynton Marsalis, Darryl “D.M.C.” McDaniels, Audra McDonald, Stephin Merritt, Suzan-Lori Parks, Salman Rushdie, David Simon, Anna Deavere Smith, Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, and many more.  Through curated conversations and surprising combinations, Public Forum seeks to engage audiences in discovering answers to the questions that drive us, both onstage and off. 

PUBLIC STUDIO is a performance series dedicated exclusively to developing the work of emerging writers. In a laboratory environment, writers rehearse with actors and a director, incorporate bare-bones design elements, and open the process to an audience over a series of performances. More than a reading or workshop, but not a full production, this middle step affords early career writers the important opportunity to deepen their experience of working collaboratively over an extended rehearsal period and to see their work staged in front of an audience. Previous Public Studio plays include Pretty Hunger by Patricia Ione Lloyd, Teenage Dick by Mike Lew, Ping Pong by Rogelio Martinez, Fidelis by Christina Gorman, Manahatta by Mary Kathryn Nagle, and The Urban Retreat by A. Zell Williams. Public Studio was founded with support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and Time Warner, Inc. Continued support for Public Studio is provided by The Time Warner Foundation. The Harold and Mimi Steinberg New Play Development Fund at The Public Theater supports the creation and development of new plays.

EMERGING WRITERS GROUP is a component of The Public Writers Initiative, a long-term program that provides key support and resources for writers at every stage of their careers. In just seven years, it has nurtured numerous playwrights who have gone on to have their plays staged at The Public and elsewhere around the country. Time Warner is the Founding Sponsor of the Emerging Writers Group, and provides continued program support through the Time Warner Foundation.

UNDER THE RADAR FESTIVAL, over the past 13 years, has presented over 194 companies from 40 countries. It has grown into a landmark of the New York City theater season and is a vital part of The Public’s mission, providing a high-visibility platform to support artists from diverse backgrounds who are redefining the act of making theater. Widely recognized as a premier launching pad for new and cutting-edge performance from the U.S. and abroad, UTR has presented works by such respected artists as Elevator Repair Service, Nature Theater of Oklahoma, Belarus Free Theatre, Guillermo Calderón, and Young Jean Lee. These artists provide a snapshot of contemporary theater: richly distinct in terms of perspectives, aesthetics, and social practice, and pointing to the future of the art form.  Under the Radar is made possible with the generous support of the Ford Foundation.

DEVISED THEATER INITIATIVE at The Public is one of the first of its kind in the U.S., providing support and resources to the next generation of independent artists and ensembles. The Public Theater has been a strong supporter of the devised theater movement and has helped promote the work of prominent and emerging devised theater-makers. Through The Public’s annual Under the Radar Festival and year-round downtown season at Astor Place, many examples of this inventive art form have been brought to the attention of audiences in New York and around the world. The Devised Theater Initiative is made possible with the generous support of the Ford Foundation.

THE LIBRARY AT THE PUBLIC is open nightly for food and drink, beginning at 5:00 p.m. Chefs Andrew Carmellini and Brian Plante have created an American menu of bar snacks, shareable appetizers, sandwiches, dinner plates and desserts sourcing local ingredients and New York influence that is available in both The Library and Joe’s Pub.

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ABOUT THE PUBLIC THEATER:

The Public Theater, under the leadership of Oskar Eustis and Executive Director Patrick Willingham, is the only theater in New York that produces Shakespeare, the classics, musicals, contemporary and experimental pieces in equal measure. Celebrating his 10th anniversary season at The Public, Eustis has created new community-based initiatives designed to engage audiences like Public Lab, Public Studio, Public Forum, Public Works, and a remount of the Mobile Unit. The Public continues the work of its visionary founder, Joe Papp, by acting as an advocate for the theater as an essential cultural force, and leading and framing dialogue on some of the most important issues of our day.  Creating theater for one of the largest and most diverse audience bases in New York City for nearly 60 years, today the Company engages audiences in a variety of venues—including its landmark downtown home at Astor Place, which houses five theaters and Joe’s Pub; the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, home to free Shakespeare in the Park; and the Mobile Unit, which tours Shakespearean productions for underserved audiences throughout New York City’s five boroughs. The Public’s wide range of programming includes free Shakespeare in the Park, the bedrock of the Company’s dedication to making theater accessible to all; Public Works, an expanding initiative that is designed to cultivate new connections and new models of engagement with artists, audiences and the community each year; and audience and artist development initiatives that range from Emerging Writers Group and to the Public Forum series. The Public is located on property owned by the City of New York and receives annual support from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; and in October 2012 the landmark building downtown at Astor Place was revitalized to physically manifest the Company’s core mission of sparking new dialogues and increasing accessibility for artists and audiences, by dramatically opening up the building to the street and community, and transforming the lobby into a public piazza for artists, students, and audiences. The Public is currently represented on Broadway by the Tony Award-winning Fun Home and Lin-Manuel Miranda’s acclaimed American musical Hamilton, and Danai Gurira’s Eclipsed featuring Lupita Nyong’o. The Public has received 47 Tony Awards, 167 Obie Awards, 52 Drama Desk Awards, 54 Lortel Awards, 32 Outer Critics Circle Awards, 13 New York Drama Critics Awards, and five Pulitzer Prizes.  www.publictheater.org. 

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GUEST REVIEWER: Encores! Concert staging of CABIN IN THE SKY

Devil may care.

A review of Encores! concert staging of
cabin

at New York City Center
February 11, 2016

CABIN IN THE SKY is one of those battles between the Heavenly and Hellish forces over a soul – that of the hapless Little Joe to be specific – that encourage the spectators to root for the good and grand even if there seems to be much more entertainment in the bad and brassy. To be fair, both sides are blessed with the marvelous music by Mr. Vernon Duke and the fine lyrics of Mr. John Latouche as well as some eye-catching choreography inspired by Mr. George Balanchine’s work for the original production, but even at its most buoyant moments, CABIN IN THE SKY’s Virtue always has a whiff of smug schoolroom morality. I can’t say if this was inherent in Mr. Lynn Root’s original book for the show or the result of Messrs. Ruben Santiago-Hudson and Jack Viertel’s concert adaptation for Encores! but no one is exactly at the edge of their seat rooting for Righteousness. Especially since the Devil has the charm, the campier lines and most of the best dance numbers.

Nevertheless, the cast of CABIN IN THE SKY provides some very winning performances that often transcend the limitations and triteness of the material.

Mr. Chuck Cooper is a petulant delight playing the Head Man: a son of the Devil who is trying to “make good” in his Poppa’s business by getting Little Joe’s soul. While his satanic efforts may not exactly breed success, they are always diverting and earn well deserved applause. Musically as well, Mr. Cooper never flags, and his rendition of “Do What You Wanna Do” backed up by his superb assistants in evil – Ms. Tiffany Mann and Messrs. Dennis Stowe and André Garner – is a veritable crowd pleaser.

blog-cabincast
On the other side of the scale, Mr. Norm Lewis makes a gratifyingly caring Lord’s General, earnestly fighting for good but with a level of amusement that keeps him from being a cardboard seraph. The problem is, that even while the Lord’s General is trying to help Petunia and Little Joe, the best argument he can offer up is the very engaging but still tame “It’s Not So Bad to Be Good.” Not exactly heady stuff for Little Joe after the production numbers that the Head Man brings onstage. Basically Mr. Lewis’ Lord’s General and his angels – played by the worthy Ms. Kristolyn Lloyd and Messrs. Jared Joseph and Nicholas Ward – are the sort of beings you would bring home to impress your folks, whereas Saturday night is more entertaining in Mr. Cooper’s diabolically fun company.

10-cabin-in-the-sky.w529.h352As for the object of Good and Bad’s dispute. Little Joe is a schmo, yet, we don’t wonder why Petunia bothers with him, because Mr. Michael Potts makes Little Joe Jackson a likeable and sympathetic hero. Indeed, Mr. Potts makes even Little Joe’s enjoyment of his newly virtuous life believable. His playfulness when singing “In My Old Virginia Home (On the River Nile)” with Petunia makes us fully appreciate why his wife has been fighting for him when she obviously can do better.

Of course, there is nothing like another woman to mess things up for a man and Georgia Brown – as played by the talented Ms. Carly Hughes – is perfect for the job. Georgia Brown is one of those terribly attractive and self-assured ladies who is perplexed when she cannot get what she wants – such as Little Joe. Ms. Hughes gives her pursuit of Little Joe a good dash of humor as well as spice, and plays off Mr. Michael Potts most effectively.

Fighting to save her man from Hell is Little Joe’s devoted wife Petunia. By rights, this lady should be a romantic doormat, but the admirable actress billed as “LaChanze” creates a plausible woman with backbone who can see the good in her husband and lovingly draw it out. This heroine is both a worthy wife and darned good company who easily captivates the audience with numbers like “Taking a Chance on Love.” When it appears that she has reached the last straw, Ms. LaChanze’s Petunia changes dramatically into a woman who can best even the worldly Georgia Brown and bring down the house with the impressively sung number “Savannah”

bww-tv-watch-highlights-of-lachanze-norm-lewis--more-in-encores-cabin-in-the-sky_1

The rest of the company is truly first-rate and deliver many high points in the show, most memorably the wonderful and boisterous “Dry Bones” which in itself is worth the price of admission.

Director Ruben Santiago-Hudson creates many memorable moments in the action of CABIN IN THE SKY but while I was entertained and interested, I was never really gripped by the sometime sitcom setup of the story (which Mr. Santiago Hudson also had a hand in). There is unevenness in the narrative that saps some of the drama out of the twists in the plot.

On the other hand, Ms. Camile A. Brown’s choreography provides impressive pieces of dance and movement. But at times certain numbers seem to get lost in a sort of Balanchine recital mode that merely extends the performances instead of enhancing the songs or adding to the story.

Musically the Encores! Orchestra conducted by Mr. Rob Berman is superb and Mr. Jonathan Tunick’s orchestrations of Mr. Vernon Duke’s music is a joy to listen to, taking full advantage of the chorus’ Gospel voices along with a big band sound reminiscent of the early 1940’s. Everything is properly amplified by Mr. Scott Lehrer’s audio designs, though the body microphones seem to be a little more obvious than intended.

Keeping with the concert staging, Ms. Anna Louizos’ sets are basic yet very effective – especially the opposing twin thrones in which are seated the Head Man and Lord’s General. Ms. Karen Perry is just as skilled in providing attractive costumes that go far in illustrating the personalities of the characters from the cheerful red garments of the Head Man and his henchmen to the white suit and amusing silver lamé cape worn by the Lord’s General. Everything is lit to good advantage by Mr. Ken Billington.

With its unequal book and overabundance of “Balanchine,” this CABIN IN THE SKY could have used more work on its dramatic foundation. But if it does not approach perfection, CABIN IN THE SKY is often very entertaining, with splendid songs and a praiseworthy cast who work hard to give the show a substance that it might not otherwise have.

About the reviewer:

I am a computer programmer, wannabe writer who loves theater and just got into the habit of inflicting my theatrical opinions.
I live in New York.
Moshe can be reached at MB1224@aol.com

Originally produced in 1940, Cabin in the Sky followed Porgy and Bess in celebrating African-American music and dance traditions. The musical tells the story of “Little Joe” Jackson (Michael Potts), a charming ne’er-do-well who dies in a saloon brawl and is given six months on earth to prove his worth to the Lord’s General (Tony Award nominee Norm Lewis) and the Devil’s Head Man (Tony Award winner Chuck Cooper)—all while struggling to remain true to his loving wife Petunia (Tony Award winner LaChanze) and resist the wiles of temptress Georgia Brown (Carly Hughes). Long considered a lost treasure, the score of Cabin in the Sky—which includes jazz hits like “Taking a Chance on Love” and “Happiness Is a Thing Called Joe”—will be restored to its original glory for Encores!

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An Interview with Ed Asner

An Interview with Ed Asner
at The Metropolitan Room
January 16, 2016
before his performance of

A Man and his Prostate
written by Ed. Weinberger

SPECIAL THANKS TO

Bernie Furshpan & staff of the Metropolitan Room

Evan Seplow
For his generosity in taping and editing this interview

The Image Factory
evan@imagefactory.tv
http://imagefactory.tv

Office: 646-414-6668
Cell: 917-442-8426

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An Interview with: Bruce Vilanch in PTown

While on vacation in PTown this summer www.BroadwayKingdom.com had the pleasure to sit down at Curio Coffee with the most famous person you NEVER heard of!

Bruce Vilanch is best know for his stint on Hollywood Squares but you’ve known him for YEARS and didn’t even realize it!

Watch the video and be in awe of an amazing career in front of and in back of the spotlight!

Special thanks to Craig Austin Hoffmeyer for arranging this.

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Greetings for
Rosh HaShanah 5775

Rosh Hashanah Hebrew 1

Elli – The King of Broadway
&
BroadwayKingdom.com

Wish You and Your Loved ones a
Healthy, Happy, Sweet, Prosperous New Year 5775

In the year to come may the Al-mighty
grant you everything you need
(and a little of what you want as well!)

Kesivah Vachasimah Tovah
Shana Tovah U’mesuka

May you be inscribed and sealed in
the 
Book of Life
for a Good, Sweet New Year

I hope to see each and every one of you very soon.

Elli

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IMPORTANT HOLIDAY LINKS/INFO:

Make sure you hear the Shofar BOTH Days!

To Find Holiday Services Near You CLICK HERE

For Rosh Hashanah/Shabbos Candle Lighting Times
PLEASE CLICK HERE

For a Rosh Hashanah Holiday Guide Click HERE

For a Rosh Hashanah Meal Guide Click HERE

On Rosh Hashanah it is customary not to eat foods which are sour or tart (the gefilte fish will have to do without the horseradish…). Instead, we focus on sweet foods, symbolizing our desire to have a sweet year full of blessings and abundance. It is also customary not to eat nuts on Rosh Hashanah, as the numerical value of the Hebrew word for nuts (“egoz”) is the same as the Hebrew word for sin (“chet”).

Rosh Hashanah Pooh

Rosh Hashanah Shofar 1

 

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PRESS RELEASE: DEMI LOVATO GOES BICOASTAL FOR PRIDE

NYC - LA Pride

MULTI-PLATINUM SELLING RECORDING ARTIST
DEMI LOVATO GOES BICOASTAL FOR PRIDE

NEW YORK, NY | LOS ANGELES, CA – Monday, May 5, 2014 – In honor of the 45th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, two of the largest Pride events in the world— LA PRIDE and NYC PRIDE—have joined forces to announce the participation of one of the biggest names in Hollywood in this year’s LGBT Pride celebrations, Demi Lovato. On June 8th, the multi-platinum selling recording artist will join the LA PRIDE Parade as Grand Marshal and her participation will include a special performance. On June 29, Lovato will head east to headline perform at NYC Pride’s legendary Dance on the Pier on Pier 26 in Tribeca.

“It’s such an honor to be a part of both LA and NYC PRIDE celebrations this year,” says Lovato. “I have been an active advocate of the LGBT community and am wholly committed to supporting individuality and being comfortable in one’s own skin. I am thrilled to be a part of both events as they are a wonderful celebration of independence and self-confidence.”

One of the most exhilarating aspects of LA PRIDE’s weekend celebration is that of its annual parade, which brings out hundreds of thousand of participants, spectators and marchers to the streets of West Hollywood. A focal point in the flamboyantly colorful parade, the Grand Marshal represents a person whom has used their celebrity to be an outspoken supporter of the LGBT community.

“Demi Lovato is an amazing role model for today’s youth, both LGBT and non-LGBT, for her activism in the area of equality, positive messaging on body image, and level of openness with her struggles. As a community, we’re fortunate to have an ally like Demi,” said Patti DiLuigi, Co-President of Christopher Street West, producers of LA PRIDE.

Dance on the Pier is NYC Pride’s largest fundraising and community support initiative. The event’s production committee awards over $45,000 in grants to LGBT and LGBT-friendly nonprofits and community organizations each year. The event also supplies NYC Pride with critical operating revenue and pulls in countless visitors, driving attendance to NYC Pride’s other official events as well as various unofficial Pride events throughout the city. The historic event has played host to world-renowned performers, including Jennifer Hudson, Jennifer Lopez, Janet Jackson, Whitney Houston and most recently Cher.

“We are thrilled to welcome Demi to our stages for this historic celebration. Now in its 28th year, the Dance on the Pier continues a proud tradition of partnering with all-star talent to create a high-quality event that raises funds to support local LGBT non-profits and New York City’s annual Pride festivities,” says Chris Frederick, Managing Director of NYC Pride.

LA PRIDE runs June 6 to 8. Visit lapride.org for more information on LA PRIDE’s Parade and other annual events, including the thrilling Festival, featuring entertainment from Jennifer Hudson, Azealia Banks, The Bangles, Mary Lambert and Betty Who.

NYC Pride runs June 21 to 29. For tickets to Dance on the Pier, visit nycpride.showclix.com. For information on NYC Pride and their full roster of annual Pride events, visit nycpride.org/events.

###

About DEMI LOVATO

Demi Lovato is a singer, songwriter, and television star with a fan base that includes over 20 million die-hard Twitter followers and 30 million fans on Facebook. She is a platinum-selling recording artist whose latest album, Demi, hit #1 on iTunes in 50 countries. The lead single—”Heart Attack”— earned Platinum status just 10 weeks after launch. Demi is currently on the road for the NEON LIGHTS TOUR which was named after the third single and “Top 5” radio hit off of her album, Demi. In addition to her musical accomplishments, in 2014, her book, STAYING STRONG: 365 DAYS A YEAR became a New York Times best-seller, she returned to television as a judge and mentor on “The X-Factor” and starred in Fox’s hit series “Glee.” She is an outspoken advocate for young people everywhere. She has become a role model by talking openly about her personal experiences and speaking out against bullying among other issues. She serves as an official Ambassador for We Day and the organization Free the Children. She has recently launched The Lovato Treatment Scholarship Program, which helps people struggling with mental health and/or addiction issues cover the cost of treatment.

About LA PRIDE / CSW

In it’s 44th year, Christopher Street West (CSW) is proud to produce LA PRIDE, a series of events celebrating the accomplishments of the TLGB community and shedding light on its continued march for equality. A year after the modern Transgender, Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual liberation movement was launched by the mob-led rebellion at the Stonewall Inn on New York’s Christopher Street in June 1969, activists in Los Angeles’ community came together to honor the rebellion with the world’s first PRIDE Parade in Hollywood, CA. Today, the organization continues to promote equality and diversity amongst the TLGB community and its allies with a three-day event held in West Hollywood, CA. The non-profit organization is comprised of an all-volunteer board of directors and professional consultants committed to the goals of human rights, education and outreach.

About NYC PRIDE

NYC Pride strives to empower individuals, groups, and our community as a whole, through the commemoration of our history—in particular the Stonewall Riots of 1969. New York City’s Pride events provide an opportunity to join together to celebrate our lives, take joy in all that we have done, and honor all those who have helped make our progress possible. The events provide a safe and affirming space in New York City while educating those both inside and outside our own community. In creating these Pride events, we reaffirm the self-worth of all Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender people and all those who join in the ongoing struggle for our civil rights.

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PRESS RELEASE: HAL LINDEN HEADLINES CAFÉ CARLYLE MAY 20TH THROUGH MAY 24TH

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

ACTOR/PERFORMER HAL LINDEN HEADLINES CAFÉ CARLYLE
MAY 20TH THROUGH MAY 24TH

     Tony award-winning actor/performer Hal Linden returns to the New York stage for six performances with his “Hal Linden Live in Concert” cabaret style, big-band classics inspired live show at Manhattan’s Café Carlyle35 East 76th Street, NY, NY 10075 – from May 20th though May 24th.

   HAL_LINDEN color photo 1These much-anticipated performances will mark Linden’s first time back on the New York stage since appearing at Feinstein’s close to seven years ago. Linden, along with his seven piece band, will treat audiences to Big Band favorites, jazz numbers and a selection of Broadway hits, along with theatrical musings highlighting memorable moments from his life and career.

     He has been touring with this new show across the country and overseas, with dates continuing throughout 2014 and into next year. In 2011, Hal Linden released his first CD,  titled It’s Never Too Late, a mix of 14 tracks that range from classic pop to jazz standards. The Los Angeles Times wrote that It’s Never Too Late is not only the title of Hal Linden’s first CD of songs, it’s also his mantra!”

     Linden has enjoyed a career as an actor, singer and musician, spanning over 65 years. He may be most familiar to audiences through his many roles on television. He recently appeared on Fox Television’s The Mindy Project and Supernatural on the CW Television network, in late 2013, while he also guest-starred on the popular CBS sitcom 2 Broke Girls which aired this week.

     After starring as police precinct captain Barney Miller in the hit television series that aired on ABC from 1975-1982, earning multiple Golden Globe and Emmy nominations for his work, he went on to star in several more series for network television: Blacke’s Magic (1986), Jack’s Place (1992-93) in which he played a retired jazz musician, and The Boys Are Back (1994). He also made numerous guest appearances on some of television’s most popular shows including: Hot In Cleveland, Gilmore Girls, Will and Grace, The Drew Carey Show, The Nanny, The King of Queens, Touched By An Angel and Law & Order: Criminal Intent.

     As many New Yorkers and theater aficionados are aware, Linden made his Broadway debut in 1957 in the musical Bells Are Ringing opposite Judy Holliday. He later starred in the 1962 Off Broadway revival of Cole Porter’s 1930s hit Anything Goes and has performed in more than 20 Broadway and Off Broadway productions. His 1971 Tony Award for “Best Actor in a Musical” was for his performance in The Rothschilds.

     Along with a full theater and television career, he also appeared in films including Bells Are Ringing (1960), When You Comin’ Back, Red Ryder? (1979), Starflight One (1983), Out To Sea (1997) with Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon,  A New Life (1988) with Alan Alda and Time Changer in 2002.

     When not touring with his live concert show or making television and film appearances, Hal Linden has also served for many years as spokesman for the Jewish National Fund. This work continues as he will be making appearances in Israel in June of this year on behalf of the Jewish National Fund.

     Coming back to appear for his New York City fans and friends, where it really all started for Linden, makes these Café Carlyle shows all the more significant. Linden reflects that “All performers dream of playing The Café Carlyle, which has always been one of my very favorite rooms in Manhattan, and certainly the most elegant. I’m really looking forward to these upcoming shows in May and I hope everyone can come out to help me celebrate.”

     Originally opened in 1955, Café Carlyle is New York City’s bastion of classic cabaret entertainment, a place where audiences experience exceptional performers at close range in an exceedingly elegant setting. Since composer Richard Rodgers moved in as The Carlyle’s first tenant, music has been an essential part of The Carlyle experience. Other talents who have made the Café Carlyle their musical home include Woody Allen, who regularly appears to play with the Eddy Davis New Orleans jazz band, and, for three decades, Café Carlyle was synonymous with the legendary Bobby Short, who thrilled sell-out crowds for 36 years. His spirit lives on through the music at Café Carlyle.

Please join us for “Hal Linden Live in Concert” at the legendary Café Carlyle at 35 East 76th Street, NY, NY 10075 from Tuesday, May 20th through Saturday, May 24th.

**All shows are at 8:45pm with two shows on Saturday, May 24th at 8:45pm and 10:45pm

**For ticket info please visit: http://www.rosewoodhotels.com/en/the-carlyle-new-york/location/things-to-do/events-at-the-carlyle

**Also please visit www.hallinden.net


Hal Linden – I’m Old Fashioned from TAKEOUT MARKETING on Vimeo.

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