You're the casting director now! In honor of the season finale, cast your vote on which singing stars should enter the Seven Kingdoms for a "dream" Broadway musical adaptation:[post_title] => Dream Casting Poll: Who Would Star In 'Game Of Thrones' The Musical? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => dream-casting-poll-who-would-star-in-game-of-thrones-the-musical [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-05-19 12:33:32 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-05-19 16:33:32 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?post_type=snax_poll&p=371539 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => snax_poll [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 372192 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2019-05-13 10:38:01 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-05-13 14:38:01 [post_content] =>
What do you get when you mix theatre and a bunch of cats? Well, probably the musical 'Cats', but also the mysterious and adorable underworld of theatre-themed kitty memes. Thank you, Internet. Cuddle up with your favorite fluffy feline and take a look at these purrr-fect memes right MEOW!
That mood when you’ve rehearsed the scene a thousand times.
The Scottish Play has all of us in scaredy-cat mode.
We’d see this production. Front row.
Are you team Phantom of the Opurrra? Or team Rawr-oul?
Because this list would not be complete without an actual ‘Cats’ musical cat meme!
This list would also not be complete without a “Grumpy Cat” meme. Grumpy Cat dreamed a dream and it was probably a nightmare...
Grumpy Cat has no time for glamour cats…
He also has no time for happy endings...
He’s basically just Javert in cat form...
We’d love any of these fluffy furballs to be our right-hand man!
Or should we say “Are you Aaron Burr, Purr?!”
This one is a purr-sonal favorite: the life of a theatre nerd in a nutshell!
Have a favorite theatre-inspired cat meme? Share it with us in the comments below![post_title] => Brighten Your Day With 12 Theatre-Inspired Cat Memes [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => brighten-your-day-with-12-theatre-inspired-cat-memes [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-05-13 10:38:30 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-05-13 14:38:30 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=372192 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 372478 [post_author] => 1294 [post_date] => 2019-05-06 12:17:42 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-05-06 16:17:42 [post_content] => It's that time of year again! When a bunch of theatre people vote on who were the best theatre people of this theatre season. This time around, 10 musicals and 15 plays have been nominated across the 26 catergories they could've been nominated. The wins won't be revealed to us until June, so take it upon yourselves to choose the winners, according to you! Also fun fact: To Kill a Mockingbird was snubbed for Best Play. [post_title] => Poll: Cast Your Vote For The 73rd Annual Tony Awards! [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => cast-vote-for-73rd-annual-tony-awards [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-05-06 12:24:19 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-05-06 16:24:19 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?post_type=snax_poll&p=372478 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => snax_poll [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 371062 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2019-05-04 10:26:54 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-05-04 14:26:54 [post_content] => Before ‘Hamilton’ or ‘Dear Evan Hansen’ swept the world by storm, another powerful musical transcended Broadway and found its place in mainstream culture. For decades, audiences across the globe have been filling theatres to witness the incomparable stage experience that is ‘Les Misérables’. This timeless musical, based on the acclaimed novel by Victor Hugo, is loved by many for its emotional tale of hope, forgiveness and humanity.
Here are 27 memorable lyrics from ‘Les Mis’:
“The color of the world is changing day by day.” - Enjolras (Red And Black)
“To love another person is to see the face of God.” - Fantine & Jean Valjean (Epilogue)
“Even the darkest night will end and the sun will rise.” - Chorus (Epilogue)
“At the end of the day you’re another day older, and that’s all you can say for the life of the poor.” - Chorus (At The End Of The Day)
“I dreamed a dream in time gone by, when hope was high and life worth living. I dreamed that love would never die. I dreamed that God would be forgiving.” - Fantine (I Dreamed A Dream)
“Red - the blood of angry men. Black - the dark of ages past. Red - a world about to dawn. Black - the night that ends at last!” - Enjolras (Red And Black)
“The day begins and now let’s see what this new world will do for me.” - Jean Valjean (Overture)
“I know a place where no one's lost. I know a place where no one cries. Crying at all is not allowed. Not in my castle on a cloud.” - Cosette (Castle On A Cloud)
“Bring him peace, bring him joy. He is young, he is only a boy. You can take, you can give. Let him be, let him live. If I die, let me die. Let him live. Bring him home.” - Jean Valjean (Bring Him Home)
“I love him but when the night is over he is gone, the river's just a river.” - Eponine (On My Own)
“'Ow do you do? My name's Gavroche. These are my people, here's my patch. Not much to look at, nothing posh. Nothing that you'd call up to scratch.” - Gavroche (Look Down)
“Nothing gets you nothing. Everything has got a little price!” - Thenardier (Master Of The House)
“Oh, my friends! My friends, don’t ask me what your sacrifice was for! Empty chairs at empty tables, where my friends shall sing no more.” - Marius (Empty Chairs At Empty Tables)
“Do you hear the people sing, singing the song of angry men? It is the music of a people who will not be slaves again. When the beating of your heart echoes the beating the beating of the drums, there is a life about to start when tomorrow comes!” - Enjolras & Company (Do You Hear The People Sing?)
“Take my love, for love is everlasting.” - Fantine (Epilogue)
“Who am I? 24601!” - Jean Valjean (Who Am I)
“There's a new world for the winning. There's a new world to be won.” - Company (One Day More)
“Yet why did I allow that man to touch my soul and teach me love? He treated me like any other, he gave me his trust, he called me brother.” - Jean Valjean (Valjean's Soliloquy)
“Stars - In your multitudes, scarce to be counted, filling the darkness with order and light…” - Javert (Stars)
“Beyond the barricade is there a world you long to see? Then join in the fight that will give you the right to be free!” - Company (Do You Hear The People Sing?)
“And I am Javert! Do not forget my name…” - Javert (Work Song/Look Down)
“Let the wine of friendship never run dry.” - Enjolras & Men (Drink With Me)
“Shall I join my brothers there? When our ranks begin to form. Do I stay and do I dare? Will you take your place with me? The time is now, the day is here... One day more.” - Enjolras & Marius (One Day More)
“A little fall of rain can hardly hurt me now. You're here, that's all I need to know. And you will keep me safe, and you will keep me close, and rain will make the flowers grow.” - Eponine (A Little Fall Of Rain)
“A heart full of love. No fear, no regret.” - Cosette (A Heart Full Of Love)
“On my own pretending he's beside me. All alone, I walk with him till morning.” - Eponine (On My Own)
“Jean Valjean is nothing now, another story must begin!” - Jean Valjean (Valjean’s Soliloquy)
Want to share another quotable lyric from ‘Les Misérables’? Comment below...[post_title] => 27 Memorable Lyrics From 'Les Misérables' [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 27-memorable-lyrics-from-les-miserables [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-05-04 10:27:57 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-05-04 14:27:57 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=371062 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 2 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 372780 [post_author] => 2182 [post_date] => 2019-04-22 10:47:30 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-04-22 14:47:30 [post_content] => Ready to feel all the feels? Want to sob uncontrollably for the next 10 minutes? Keep scrolling for the most feels-inducing theatre moments - both happy and sad!
10. ‘Electricity’ - ‘Billy Elliot’This song is Billy's answer to the question, "What does it feel like, when you are dancing?" He replies that dancing makes him feel like flying, like he’s lost himself and found himself in one motion, and like there are sparks inside him just beginning to burst him open. If you've ever had a deep passion for anything you love to do, especially performing arts-based, this song is sure to make you smile and feel all fuzzy inside. https://youtu.be/n1Q08xO7Zsg
9. ‘Far From the Home I Love’ - ‘Fiddler on the Roof’In this song, Tevya’s daughter, Hodel, sings him her struggle of loving Perchik and leaving her home. She loves her family, and once was perfectly happy to remain by them, but now that she is in love, she would go anywhere with Perchik, even Siberia. It’s a simple song, but one that especially hits hard if you’ve recently moved away from your own family. https://youtu.be/E3Pr-6Jfpvc
8. ‘She Used To Be Mine’ - ‘Waitress’In this stirring song, Jenna Hunterson laments losing her true self over the years. Her abusive husband Earl has just taken all the money she had hidden for her yet-to-be-born child, presumably to spend it on alcohol. She eventually concludes that her baby is reawakening a fire inside her, convincing her to fight for a better life for them both. It's a beautiful and sad tribute to our hero's past self and one that never fails to make me misty-eyed. https://youtu.be/DDDqIxGk9pg
7. ‘You Will Be Found’ - Dear Evan HansenAt the launch of The Connor Project, Evan Hansen gives a moving speech. Although this speech was based on Evan's made-up friendship with Connor, it still has a huge impact on people even outside of the show. With lines like, "Let that lonely feeling wash away; Maybe there's a reason to believe you'll be okay," and, "you'll reach up and you'll rise again," it's an emotional, uplifting piece about friends being there to help you through dark times. https://youtu.be/mSfH2AuhXfw
6. ‘Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tell Your Story’ - ‘Hamilton’After Alexander Hamilton's death, those who knew him gather in a finale to reminisce on their enemy, brother, and husband. They remind us of his genius, and that he didn't live long enough to tell his story. In the end, it's Eliza, his wife, who preserves his legacy. A notable emotional moment is when Eliza is talking about the children in her orphanage: "In their eyes I see you, Alexander." Tears. Every. Time. https://youtu.be/NrMkdZtqiVI
5. ‘For Good’ - ‘Wicked’The farewell scene between Elphaba and Glinda has always been a tear-jerker. The two witches sing about how each has changed the other for the better, and exchange apologies for their past disagreements. They then part ways, never to see each other again. Who knew one day I’d be crying over the “Wicked Witch of the West”? https://youtu.be/Y8YMfgu92hQ
4. All of ‘Les Miserables’“Les Miserables” is the perfect name for this sad novel-turned-musical. There is hardly a 15-minute span without death or other melancholy moment through the entire show. For example: "I Dreamed a Dream," "Fantine’s Death/Come to Me," "On My Own," "A Little Fall of Rain," "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables," ...you get it. If you're deep in your feels and craving a sung-through tragedy to cry/sing to, this is your show! https://youtu.be/Wtd4M5nEfsA
3. ‘Finale’ - ‘The Phantom of the Opera’In the finale of the longest-running Broadway musical, the Phantom realizes that he cannot force Christine to love him, so he sets her and Raoul free. Christine returns to give back a ring that the Phantom had placed on her finger. Overcome with emotion, the Phantom confesses his love for her as she rejoins Raoul. As he wails that the music of the night is over, he disappears, leaving only his mask. I may have listened to the cast album more times than I could count, but I break down every time at the finale! https://youtu.be/RHsKeYhwUwg
2. ‘A Part of Us’ - ‘Once On This Island’Mama Euralie, Tonton Julian, and Little Girl mourn Ti Moune, the little orphan girl from the tree. In the story told to the Little Girl, the gods rewarded Ti Moune for her love and perseverance by giving her a peaceful end and preserving her for all time as a boundary-breaking tree. Although I knew what to expect from this story, my heart broke and was healed in less than three minutes. https://youtu.be/wX8r--jpICU
1. ‘I’ll Cover You (Reprise)’ - ‘Rent’The musical "Rent" is laden with emotion, but this song especially gets me into tears. During Angel's funeral, Collins brings back the song "I'll Cover You" with heart-wrenching anguish, promising Angel that he will love him even in death, for "all my life." BRB, sobbing. https://youtu.be/W_5mhPxVfck
Did we make you cry? Did we miss a musical moment that gave you feels? Let us know which one in the comments below...
You May Also Like: Poll: Rank Your Favorite Broadway Heroines[post_title] => Top 10 Musical Theatre Moments That Give Us Feels [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => top-10-musical-theatre-moments-give-feels [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-04-23 14:09:43 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-04-23 18:09:43 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=372780 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 9 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 372356 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2019-04-17 09:42:33 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-04-17 13:42:33 [post_content] => [post_title] => Quiz: Which Broadway Musical Princess Are You? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => which-broadway-musical-princess-are-you [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-04-17 09:45:59 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-04-17 13:45:59 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?post_type=snax_quiz&p=372356 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => snax_quiz [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 3 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 372652 [post_author] => 2192 [post_date] => 2019-04-15 13:11:27 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-04-15 17:11:27 [post_content] => Did you ever have a day that didn’t turn out the way you’d expected? You’re all dressed up for your big night. For months now you’ve been the talk of the town. The critics love you; the audiences love you, the nominators love you. You already won the Drama Desk a few weeks back, and tonight your show is nominated for more Tony Awards than anything else in the season. Everyone your parents have ever talked to are watching. You deserve this. Truly, you do. And you look mah-velous! Finally, they get to your category. When the presenter says your name on the list of nominees, your date squeezes your hand -- one last vote of confidence, “You got this, babe! I believe in you.” The envelope is torn. And… … they call someone else’s name. I can tell you from personal experience: not winning is a miserable sensation. And it’s especially painful when everybody said you would. But, hey, that’s showbiz. Here are a couple of instances throughout Tony Awards history when people got robbed. They deserved better. Here are their stories...
1. Best Musical: “Dreamgirls” vs. “Nine”, 1982Of the four musicals nominated in 1982, only two actually deserved to win. Those were “Nine” and “Dreamgirls”. The also-rans that season were the cloyingly twee “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” and the obscure honkytonk longshot “Pump Boys and Dinettes.” For the majority of that season, however, “Dreamgirls” had dominated the landscape. The show was a big hit for its producers, The Shubert Organization. Jennifer Holliday’s bombastic turn as Effie White was not to be missed. The show’s director and choreographer Michael Bennett (“A Chorus Line”) had delivered a seamlessly slick production with an unrelenting drive. The show was dynamite. Then, on the very last day of Tony eligibility, a new competitor arrived. The Nederlander Organization (longstanding rivals of the Shuberts) had opened “Nine”, an intimate musical based on the Frederico Fellini film “8 ½.” The show had practically materialized from thin air. But, man, was it was captivating... and styled with artful restraint by director Tommy Tune. To be frank, “Nine” was downright sexy. Those assets earned the show 12 Tony nominations. “Dreamgirls” earned 13. On Tony night, the race was neck-and-neck going into the final lap. For Best Director, Tommy Tune (of “Nine”) beat Michael Bennett (of “Dreamgirls”). In an equitable turn, Bennett was consoled by beating Tune for Best Choreography. The presenter for the Best Musical category that year was Lena Horne. “I hope I can read this without my glasses,” she chuckled while tearing at the envelope. “The winner is… NINE!” The audience was SHOCKED. The next morning in The New York Times, columnist Carol Lawson said, “The producers of ‘'Nine’ were jubilant as their show beat out ‘Dreamgirls,’ the lavish musical unofficially based on the rise of the Supremes. For most of the season, which was a particularly weak one for musicals, ‘Dreamgirls’ had no strong competition for the year's awards. But all that changed when ‘Nine’ opened a month ago…” In the end, “Dreamgirls” won 6 Tony Awards -- including one for Jennifer Holliday -- while “Nine” won five. But one of those five was Best Musical, and that’s really the one that matters. PS: If you want to know more about this fascinating story, I highly recommend Michael Reidel’s book “Razzle Dazzle.” I couldn’t put it down!
2. Best Musical: “Two Gentlemen of Verona” vs. “Follies”, 1972Look, a lot of people like to crap all over “Two Gentlemen of Verona.” But I’m here to tell you: they’re wrong. Well, for the most part. No one can deny that the show has a catchy score; it’s tuneful and lively, full of sass and brass. The show’s composer Galt MacDermott (“HAIR”) said his inspiration for its sound was walking down Broadway on a nice day and hearing every kind of music pour out of open windows. The result was an eclecticism that warms like auditory sunshine. Now, originally that production started out at Shakespeare in the Park. Then after receiving positive notices, it picked up its duds and legitimized itself on a Broadway stage. A STELLAR review from the Times established it as the one to see in 1972. Clive Barnes declared, “Love is in bloom and back in style. It has a surge of youth to it, at times an almost carnal intimation of sexuality, and a boisterous sense of love. It is precisely this that the new musical catches and makes its own.” Meanwhile, it’s major competition wasn’t proving to be so accessible. Word around town pegged “Follies” as more of an accomplishment than an entertainment -- sort of like a worthy experiment that mostly paid off, even if it was a chore to read the scientist’s findings. Critic Walter Kerr didn’t seem to know what to make of it. The first paragraph of his review called it “exhausting,” and “tedious.” But then by paragraph five he said it was a “huge entertainment.” Still, despite his indecision, the Tony nominations favored “Follies” with 12 and “Two Gentlemen” with only 9. On the big night, “Follies” had nearly a clean sweep. It took home awards for direction, choreography, lighting, scenery, costumes, score, and for actress Alexis Smith. The only award “Two Gentlemen” won was for Best Book of a Musical (John Guare & Mel Shapiro). That’s why it was such a shock when “Two Gentlemen” took Best Musical. And what a night it must have been for its producer (and founder of the Public Theater), Joe Papp. Not only had Papp produced “Two Gentlemen” -- that year’s Best Musical -- but he had also produced that year’s Best Play -- “Sticks and Bones” by David Rabe. However, history seems to have revised this decision. Since losing the Tony, “Follies” has received two major revivals on Broadway. Meanwhile, any and all attempts at “Two Gentlemen” have fizzled in the rain. So, what were the factors that led to this upset? Well, for starters, the prior year “Company” had dominated the awards. “Follies” was another effort by the same collaborators as “Company”, Stephen Sondheim and Hal Prince. This year’s experiment yielded similar results and the voters wanted to support variety. Also, the other big Galt MacDermott show “HAIR” had been ahead of its time and, therefore, didn’t win in its respective year. So, it is possible that this award for “Two Gentlemen” was an act of self-validation by the voters. It was as if to say, “See, we’re with hip! We’re with it… now!” Personally, though, I think voters were blinded by “Two Gentlemen’s” pure sunshine of a score. Anyway, it sure beats a lot better than “Follies” callused and withered heart.
3. Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical: Idina Menzel vs. Tonya Pinkins, 2004It’s not easy being green. In fact, according to Ben Brantley of The New York Times, it’s a lot easier being pink. At least it is when you’re Kristin Chenoweth (read: popular). Mind you, Brantley always has been a worshipper of KC. But his review for “Wicked” officially lit the candle at her altar. He even went so far as to declare her the show’s one saving grace. “Be grateful,” he said, “very grateful, that Ms. Chenoweth, who spent a brief exile in the land of sitcoms, has returned to the stage. She provides the essential helium in a bloated production that might otherwise spend close to three hours flapping its oversized wings without taking off… Yet it's hard to avoid the impression that whenever Ms. Chenoweth leaves the stage, ‘Wicked’ loses its wit.” Needless to say, he didn’t find Idina Menzel to be nearly as appealing. He barely got around to mentioning her before circling back to Kristen. As he put it, “The talented Ms. Menzel will no doubt dazzle audience members whose musical tastes run to soft-rock stations. But for aficionados of the American musical, it's Ms. Chenoweth who's the real thing, melding decades of performing traditions into something shiny and new. 'Wicked' does not, alas, speak hopefully for the future of the Broadway musical. Ms. Chenoweth, on the other hand, definitely does.” To add insult to injury, it was ruled by the Tony nominating committee (who were likely solicited by the show’s producers) that both Idina and Kristen would be eligible to compete in the same category -- Leading Actress in a Musical. When they were both nominated in that category, it was impossible to think their onstage rivalry didn’t bleed into the wings. During the campaign, Menzel did have a slight advantage; Chenoweth had already won a Tony for “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” and, let’s face it, Elphaba does way more heavy lifting in “Wicked”. Anyway, most voters thought that the two “Wicked” actresses would split the vote and, therefore, neither would win. That made the front-runner Tonya Pinkins. She was nominated for her breathtaking performance in “Caroline, or Change.” Pinkins had won previously in 1992 for “Jelly’s Last Jam” and a lot of people were saying she deserved it again. She was MESMERIZING as Caroline, the put-upon maid to a Jewish family in a haunting little show about race relations in the 1960s. Mark Swed of the Los Angeles Times wrote of Pinkins, “If you needed no other reason to see [‘Caroline, or Change’], Tonya Pinkins' understated, nuanced performance would supply it. Hers will, I hope, one day be remembered as a Broadway classic for its ability to balance smoldering anger with radiance.” Alas, come Tony night, it was Menzel took home the trophy -- in which case Pinkins and Chenoweth were the ones turning green.
4. Best Musical: “Wicked” vs. “Avenue Q”, 2004If there was an award to be given for “Biggest Tony Award Upset in History,” this would easily win. By the time the Tonys finally rolled around in 2004, the statues had practically been engraved for “Wicked.” And, why not? The show was unstoppable. It was a critic-proof juggernaut. Its word-of-mouth was golden, as were its ticket sales (then and in the 15+ years since). When an informal poll was given among Tony voters by The New York Times, the consensus was that “Wicked” would definitely win. But then some naughty puppets got in the way. The producing office for “Avenue Q” waged an all-out war against its competition. They ran an ingenious campaign encouraging people to, “Vote Your Heart.” They took out full-page newspaper ads and held a pizza party for out-of-town voters. They even distributed CD’s with a new song titled “Rod’s Dilemma.” The song features the entire cast of the show all helping Rod determine how to cast his vote for the new Rotary Club president (“Why not vote for the person who deserves it?”). Promotional buttons for “Q” were distributed at the theater. They even decorated the box office like a campaign headquarters. In total, the effort cost producers around $300,000. And, believe it or not, it worked. Over the course of the evening, “Avenue Q” won 3 Tony Awards: Best Book/Lyrics, Best Original Score, and Best Musical. These 3 awards are the trifecta; they’re the most important for a new musical to win. “Wicked”, on the other hand, won for Idina Menzel, Best Scenic Design, and Best Costumes. Consequently, “Wicked” director Joe Mantello also won that night, but for his work on “Assassins.” Still, if I had the retrospective choice between investing in “Avenue Q” and investing in “Wicked,” my green would be on green -- Tonys be dammed. During its run at the Golden Theater before transferring Off-Broadway, “Avenue Q” took in a respectable cumulative gross of $121,918,918. Meanwhile, “Wicked” has earned $1,276,318,914 counting. Fly high, you wicked witches!
NOTE: Didn’t see your favorite listed here? Please stay tuned! This is a continuing series and more Tony Awards Upsets are on the way.[post_title] => And The Winner ISN'T: The Biggest Tony Awards Upsets In History (PART ONE) [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => and-the-winner-isnt-the-biggest-tony-awards-upsets-in-history-part-one [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-04-15 13:12:25 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-04-15 17:12:25 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=372652 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 372256 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2019-04-10 08:44:01 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-04-10 12:44:01 [post_content] => Cue those seventy-six trombones because ‘The Music Man’ has found its star-studded Broadway revival. Set to open officially on October 22, 2020, the production will star Hugh Jackman as the iconic Professor Harold Hill opposite Sutton Foster as Marion Paroo. Is there a better duo to take on the song, dance and witty banter of a con-man and rule-following librarian? We think not.
As we await the anticipated Broadway revival, we’re reminiscing over these six reasons to love ‘The Music Man’:
1. It was adapted into an iconic movie.Bringing Broadway to the big screen is hard and many movie musicals undergo brutal scrutiny. After debuting onstage in 1957, ‘The Music Man’ film was released in 1962 and received critical acclaim (we’re talking an Academy Award for Best Musical Score plus five nominations). The movie, starring Robert Preston and Shirley Jones, has since then become a classic.
2. The made-for-TV remake was even good.The 2003 television movie starring Matthew Broderick as Harold Hill and Kristin Chenoweth as Marion gave Broadway-loving theatre nerds life that year. Rather than taking too many liberties as many remakes often do, it stayed true to the heart of the original film. The TV remake also features Victor Garber and Molly Shannon as the town mayor and his eccentric wife.
3. It’s a feel-good story with something for everyone.Perhaps ‘The Music Man’ has made such waves in both musical theatre and Hollywood because of its simple, sweet and entertaining story. When Harold Hill, a traveling salesman with questionable credibility, arrives in River City, Iowa, chaos ensues. While it’s Hill’s mission to form a marching band that will allow him to sell instruments he does not possess (and flee before anyone catches on to his scam), his time in River City teaches him a thing or two. ‘The Music Man’ is a heartwarming story with something for everyone - life lessons, romance, comedy, and plenty of classic show tunes.
4. It’s got insanely catchy music.[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LI_Oe-jtgdI[/embed] You try listening to "Seventy-Six Trombones" without marching to the beat. Don’t even get us started on “Marian The Librarian”. All we’ve got to say is “Ya Got Trouble.”
5. It’s got some of Broadway’s most beautiful ballads.[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JLDsLeVxOaU[/embed] Decades later, tunes such as “Goodnight, My Someone" and “Till There Was You” still remain memorable and impactful in the world of musical theatre. Their soulful lyrics and soaring melodies have stood the test of time due to their relatable messages on love.
6. There’s a new Broadway revival in the works and we’re ALL about it.If the “Pick a Little, Talk a Little" ladies of River City could read up on current theatre news, they’d be chatting all about the latest Broadway revival announcement. Playbill reports that a new production of ‘The Music Man’, directed by Jerry Zaks (‘Little Shop Of Horrors’, ‘A Bronx Tale’, ‘Hello, Dolly!’) and starring Hugh Jackman and Sutton Foster in leading roles, will feature choreography by Tony Award-winner Warren Carlyle (‘Finian's Rainbow’, ‘Hello, Dolly!’). The revival is set to open for previews September 9, 2020 and officially open on Broadway October 22, 2020.
Why do you love ‘The Music Man’? Share with us in the comments below![post_title] => 6 Reasons To Love 'The Music Man' [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 6-reasons-to-love-the-music-man [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-04-10 08:45:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-04-10 12:45:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=372256 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 2 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370790 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2019-04-02 12:15:00 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-04-02 16:15:00 [post_content] => Which musical powerhouse will reign most popular? Vote now. [post_title] => Poll: Rank Your Favorite Broadway Heroines [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => poll-rank-your-favorite-broadway-heroines [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-04-02 12:16:52 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-04-02 16:16:52 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?post_type=snax_poll&p=370790 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => snax_poll [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 3 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 371485 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2019-03-29 11:32:13 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-03-29 15:32:13 [post_content] => What would Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore think of muggle theatre? We think he’d love it! It’s no secret that Hogwarts’ most beloved headmaster was fond of music (J. K. Rowling references this in the series many times) and we can totally picture this great wizard listening to some Andrew Lloyd Webber in his downtime.
Here are 10 magical Dumbledore gifs relatable to every theatre nerd...
1. When you find other people who get your theatre references...
2. Finally winning the ‘Hamilton’ lottery like...
3. Your friend's face when you finally win the ‘Hamilton’ lottery but they’ve also been entering every day…
4. When your school announces auditions for their musical and everyone already assumes you're there...
5. And the production requires you to act, sing AND dance…
6. That rehearsal when you’re required to be off-book be like...
7. The day before tech week:
8. Spotting your cast-member bestie backstage on opening night...
9. When your scene finally arrives and you step onstage:
10 .Remembering why you love theatre so:
Fortunately for you, we’re not throwing away our shot to present these life-giving ‘Hamilton’ memes for your viewing pleasure:
1.Because this is the most relatable thing we’ve ever seen.
2.If you aren’t head-banging and screaming “HERCULES MULLIGAN” at the top of your lungs every time you listen to “Yorktown” you aren’t doing it right.
3.Us after physical activity and John Jay after writing five of the federalist papers.
4.Happy Valentine’s Day from A. Ham.
5.Hugs and kisses from King George.
6.Can we have more supercalifragilisticexpialidocious ‘Hamilton’/’Mary Poppins Returns’ crossovers, please?
7.Da da da dat da dat da da da da ya da....
8.The child who wrote this list is our spirit animal.
9.Only the truest of ‘Hamilton’ fans will get this...
10.What can we say? We’re old souls.
11.Raise your hand if you’re a Lin-Manuel Carrie.
12.‘Hamilton’ in a nutshell.
13.It’s cards against humanity, but for Alexander Hamilton.
History has its eyes on this meme.
A purrr-fect representation of this song.
We are satisfied.
Have you ever seen anything more accurate?
Time to replenish your Gatorade stock, gang.
When the Patrick to your Spongebob ALWAYS gets your ‘Hamilton’ references.
Have a favorite ‘Hamilton’ meme? Share it with us in the comments below![post_title] => 21 'Hamilton' Memes That Continue To Give Us Life [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 21-hamilton-memes-continue-give-life [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-03-15 10:30:13 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-03-15 14:30:13 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=371154 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 371726 [post_author] => 391 [post_date] => 2019-03-12 11:42:05 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-03-12 15:42:05 [post_content] => Throughout the years, women have written intriguing, provocative works for the stage. Composers such as Jeanine Tesori and Lisa Lambert have won Tony Awards for their musicals, whereas singer-songwriters such as Sara Bareilles and Cyndi Lauper have achieved crossover success with their musicals. With the plethora of authors in more niche circles, here's a list of 30 more female playwrights we want you to know.
1. Annie Baker:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=90-M_pOkhEg Baker is best known for her 2013 Pulitzer-winning Off-Broadway play "The Flick." Aside from having written many other Off-Broadway plays, she was a MacArthur Fellow for 2017.
2. Lisa D'Amour:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qrY7mBfgLP0 D'Amour's Off-Broadway plays include "The Cataract" and "Nita and Zita," the latter of which won an Obie Award. Her play "Detroit" was a finalist for the 2011 Pulitzer Prize, and her Broadway play "Airline Highway" received four Tony nominations and three Drama Desk nominations.
3. Sarah DeLappe:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQWG5E3tyAw Her 2016 Off-Broadway play "The Wolves," which is about a high school girls' soccer team, was a finalist for the 2017 Pulitzer Prize. She has an MFA from Brooklyn College.
4. Margaret Edson:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_QolMf9engU Her play "Wit," which ran Off-Broadway from 1998-2000, earned her the Pulitzer Prize, an Emmy for Outstanding Made for Television Film, and a Tony nomination for Best Revival of a Play. The Broadway production starred Cynthia Nixon, who also received a Tony nomination.
5. Liz Flahive:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BT4NbfyGjwM A graduate from NYU Tisch, Flahive's play "From Up Here" received nominations from Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle. She has co-produced the shows "Nurse Jackie" and "GLOW."
6. Amy Freedhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G_Wd8SGgb4I Her Off-Broadway play "Freedomland" was a finalist for the 1998 Pulitzer Prize. Another Off-Broadway play of hers, the Shakespeare-themed "The Beard of Avon," played Off-Broadway in 2003. More recently, the San Francisco Public Library named her a Library Laureate.
7. Madeleine George:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ObYh_pZtuk Her 2013 Off-Broadway play "The (curious case of the) Watson Intelligence" was a Pulitzer Prize finalist. Along with Young Jean Lee, Anne Washburn, and Sarah Ruhl, George also co-founded the Obie-winning collective 13P. She is married to Lisa Kron, who co-wrote the musical "Fun Home."
8. Rebecca Gilmanhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=refS_yB9h8k Her best-known works are the Off-Broadway plays "Spinning Into Butter" and "Boy Gets Girl." The former play examines political correctness and racial identity, whereas the latter play examines power dynamics in gender relations. Another play, "A True Story of the Johnstown Flood," was inspired by Hurricane Katrina.
9. Gina Gionfriddo:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofYct6vDx00 Two of her Off-Broadway plays, "Becky Shaw" and "Rapture, Blister, Burn," were 2009 and 2013 finalists for the Pulitzer Prize. She has also written for "Law and Order" and "Cold Case."
10. DW GregoryHer plays are tragicomedic examinations of American life throughout history. One of her most famous works, "Radium Girls," is about a group of female factory workers who fall ill with radium poisoning. It is a popular choice among high schools and community theaters.
11. Danai Gurira:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oge6B-2ORQI You might know her as Michonne from "The Walking Dead" and as Okoye in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Gurira's play "Eclipsed" received six Tony nominations (winning one), and her play "Familiar" won her the Sam Norkin Award from Drama Desk.
12. Leslye Headland:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sot-NvEoX40 Headland is known for her "Seven Deadly Plays" cycle, in which each play covers one of the seven deadly sins in Christianity. She has directed multiple films, and her Netflix series "Russian Doll," which she created with Natasha Lyonne and Amy Poehler, premieres later this year.
13. Amy Herzog:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gB7-2crhrRA Her Off-Broadway play "4000 Miles" won a 2012 Obie Award and was a 2013 Pulitzer Prize finalist. Her other Off-Broadway plays, including "The Great God Plan," Mary Jane," and "Belleville," each received Drama Desk nominations.
14. Quiara Alegría Hudes:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aWlo4-yace0 Best known for writing the book for "In the Heights," Hudes' Off-Broadway play "Water by the Spoonful" won her the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Her most recent musical "Miss You Like Hell," which she wrote with Erin McKeown, played Off-Broadway last year.
15. Lucy Kirkwood:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2JF_H-LDfFA This British playwright has found success on West End and on Broadway. Her most famous play, "The Children," premiered in London in 2016, opened on Broadway a year later, and earned two Tony nominations.
16. Young Jean Leehttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3SX7oh1IiQ Lee has written and directed ten shows for her own non-profit theater company, of which she is the Artistic Director. Her most famous play, "Straight White Men," made her the first Asian-American woman to have a play produced on Broadway.
17. Jennifer Maisel:Her 2012 Off-Broadway play "The Last Seder" is about a Long Island family coming together during a difficult time. She is a lecturer at USC's School for Dramatic Arts, and has been a Playwright in Residence for The Jewish Women's Theatre Project.
18. Martyna Majok:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pgBUNbqXS_s
This Polish-American playwright won the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for her Off-Broadway play "Cost of Living." More recently, her play "Queens," which is about a group of immigrant women growing in the New York borough of the same name, premiered Off-Broadway last year.
19. Lynn Nottage:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YcReO9WfWeQ Nottage is the only woman to have won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama twice. Her most recent major play "Sweat" is about a group of factory worker friends who are pitted against each other when layoffs occur. The play received three Tony nominations in 2017.
20. Antoinette Nwandu:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XW_FHrzzq_c Nwandu is a member of the Ars Nova Play Group, and her play "Pass Over," which ran Off-Broadway last year, became a film for Amazon that Spike Lee directed.
21. Suzan-Lori Parks:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BC6ZqMKWEOY In 2002, her play "Topdog/Underdog" made her the first African-American woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. She then was a Pulitzer Prize finalist in 2015 for her Off-Broadway play "Father Comes Home from the War (Parts 1, 2, and 3)." Her upcoming Off-Broadway play "White Noise" will premiere at the Public Theater in March of this year.
22. Theresa Rebeck:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oENy0bGjIr8 Her Off-Broadway play "Omnium Gatherum," which she wrote with Alexandra Gersten-Vassilaros, was a 2004 Pulitzer Prize finalist. Rebeck has had other Broadway plays, including "Seminar" and "Dead Accounts." Her most recent Broadway play"Bernhardt/Hamlet" is about Sarah Bernhardt's groundbreaking performance as the iconic Shakespearean protagonist.
23. Yasmina Reza:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o9CMmo-PFM8 This French playwright has had two Broadway plays, "Art" and "God of Carnage," which both received Tony nominations. Last year, she published a novel "Elisabeth," which is about a woman whose curiosity and ambition turn her quaint life into a police thriller.
24. Sarah Ruhl:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=brr2sxSIooA Two of her plays, "The Clean House" and "In the Next Room (or The Vibrator Play)," were Pulitzer Prize finalists. The latter play received three Tony nominations. More recently, her Off-Broadway play "For Peter Pan on Her 70th Birthday" received its New York premiere in 2017.
25. Laura Shamas:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BVfuKQSFUwU Having earned a Ph. D. from Pacifica Graduate Institute, Shamas has written over 40 plays. She has also published "Pop Mythology," which is an essay collection about mythology and modern life. Shamas is part-Chickasaw, and her works are featured in the Native American Women Playwrights Archive at Miami University in Ohio.
26. Lisa B. Thompson:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bk9bi5bXS3A Thompson is a professor of African and African Diaspora Studies at UT-Austin, whose play "Single Black Female" ran Off-Broadway in 2006. She has had multiple plays receive productions throughout Texas.
27. Lucy Thurber:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VuysFYrBHqQ Thurber is a playwright and opera librettist who has taught at NYU and Sarah Lawrence College. Her plays "Bottom of the World," "Scarcity," and "Tranfers" all received Off-Broadway runs during this decade.
28. Joyce Van Dyke:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYd3X7HhCAM Van Dyke is a lecturer at Harvard Extension School. Her play "The Women Who Mapped the Stars," which tells of the discoveries made by five female Harvard astronomers, premiered last year in Cambridge. Her Off-Broadway play "Daybreak," originally called "Deported," is about the Armenian Genocide.
29. Paula Vogel:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYFtGX60doE Vogel is a playwright who was a Creative Writing Professor at Brown University for 24 years. She has written multiple Off-Broadway plays, including "How I Learned to Drive," which received the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Her Broadway play "Indecent" won two Tony Awards in 2017.
30. Anne Washburn:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dR01Ez6kFZw She is best known for her 2013 Off-Broadway dark comedy, "Mr. Burns, a Post-Electric Play." Despite a polarized reception, the play one Drama League nomination. Washburn's theatrical adaptation of "The Twilight Zone" is opening on West End in March.
Did we leave off your favorite female playwright? Let us know in the comments below...[post_title] => 30 Female Playwrights You Should Know [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 30-female-playwrights-you-should-know [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-03-12 11:43:29 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-03-12 15:43:29 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=371726 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 34 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 371432 [post_author] => 2192 [post_date] => 2019-03-07 10:55:56 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-03-07 15:55:56 [post_content] => As dutiful Theatre Nerds, not even the most cynical among us should root for a Broadway show to fail. I mean, what’s the point? First of all, there’s already enough negativity in this world... And, second of all, the closing of a show puts good people out of work -- not to mention all the money that it washes down the drain. Yes, sure -- buying a ticket entitles you to an opinion (how loud you decide to scream that opinion is totally up to you). But, frankly, when a show doesn’t work it’s just plain sad. Ye olde critic for the New York Times Brooks Atkinson shared a similarly sentimental sentiment. As he put it in his review for the doomed 1958 musical “Portofino,” -- “There is something pathetic about a musical show that is hopeless. For the hopeless ones require as much work as those that succeed. There are just as many carnival-colored costumes; there is just as much cheerful scenery. The light cues are just as intricate, and the orchestrations as ebullient. Just as many attractive young people dance their feet off and smile as pleasantly. Everybody has rehearsed just as loyally, as if he were bound to succeed. What makes a hopeless musical show pathetic is the fact that the medium is glamorous and gay.” From there, he went on to tear the show to shreds. Even though we can all agree it’s a bummer to watch a show tank, there is admittedly something gleeful about reading bad reviews. Blame it on the schadenfreude, I guess (wow, I spelled “schadenfreude” all by myself! Thanks, “Avenue Q.”). Most of the time, the more scathing the review, the juicier it reads -- as long as it wasn’t written about you… THIS TIME! Here’s a small sampling of some deliciously cringeworthy snark from theatrical reviews of seasons past. Enjoy -- but try not to gloat... these shows have had it hard enough already.
1. LEGS DIAMOND (1988), 64 PerformancesFrank Rich, The New York Times: Far from being a source of ridiculous slap-happiness, ''Legs Diamond'' is a sobering interlude of minimum-security imprisonment that may inspire you to pull out a pen and attend to long-neglected tasks, like finishing last Sunday's crossword puzzle or balancing a checkbook. The script is so confusing I lost its thread before the end of the first number. The unhelpful dialogue, which rarely falls trippingly from the company's highly amplified tongues, sounds as if it had been translated from foreign-language comic books. A typical punchline? ''My girls don't come cheap, and neither do sequins.'' (Actually, these sequins look as if they do.) If there's any mystery to ''Legs Diamond,'' it is the one attending [the show’s star Peter] Allen, not the gangster he purports to play. Here is a performer with a single expression - a pop-eyed, I-dare-you-not-to-love-me grin - and a harsh singing voice as taut as his face. He delivers jokes as if he were a ''Hollywood Squares'' second banana struggling with his cue cards, and his dancing amounts to a few Rockette-style high kicks and a lot of wiggling at the joints. As for Mr. Allen's songs, they are so derivative they make Andrew Lloyd Webber's scores sound idiosyncratic.
2. LENNON (2005), 49 PerformancesBen Brantley, The New York Times: In the immortal words of Yoko Ono, "Aieeeee!" A fierce primal scream -- of the kind Ms. Ono is famous for as a performance and recording artist -- is surely the healthiest response to the agony of "Lennon," the jerry-built musical shrine that opened last night at the Broadhurst Theater.
3. BRING BACK BIRDIE (1981), 4 PerformancesFrank Rich, The New York Times: If the first ''Birdie'' was invigorating, the new one is depressing right up until that curtain call. Although its creators have done plenty of fine work since their first success, you'd never guess it from this mess. ''Bring Back Birdie'' is not only far inferior to its predecessor, but it is also woefully tired - as if everyone involved had abandoned hope. Instead of doing ''Bring Back Birdie,'' these people should have brought back ''Bye Bye Birdie.'' Or maybe they should have left their and our fond memories in peace. Though ''Bring Back Birdie'' aspires to bring back everyone's happy youth, it has sent its creators and audience alike crashing into a gloomy middle age.
4. THE CIVIL WAR (1998), 61 PerformancesBen Brantley, The New York Times: In the wake of any war come questions, dazed, wondering questions. What, finally, did we gain from fighting? What did we learn? Why did this conflict have to happen in the first place? Perhaps, then, it is appropriate that the new musical called ''The Civil War,'' whose subject is nothing less than what its grand, stark title promises, should provoke a similar litany of questions. Why are we here at the St. James Theater? What is the point in remaining for more than two hours? Why would anyone stage a show that improbably drains the drama from what is still the most fraught and painful chapter in American history? The show arranges its archetypal elements into confoundingly static patterns, laying out all its cards in its opening minutes and then failing to combine them in ways that would build to revelation or strong emotional response. Though the musical covers the full span of the war, with the names, dates and casualty counts of major battles projected in supertitles, you eventually come to feel that you have been watching the same rotating diorama.
5. TABOO (2003), 100 PerformancesPeter Marks, The Washington Post: Experiencing the stultifying "Taboo," you feel as if you could be standing on a shaky pier on the edge of theaterland, waving the SS Broadway Musical goodbye. This sort of sensation comes on those dispiriting nights when big, new, expensive shows bearing all the telltale signs of actual entertainment -- starry names, busy choreography, lighting -- reveal how far the musical has strayed from traditional craftsmanship. During these peculiar events, you find yourself questioning the entire institution of Broadway, wondering whether anyone will ever again levitate an audience with imaginative songs painstakingly woven into a story of bona fide human consequence. The feeling will pass, of course, because the regenerative impulse in your psyche guides you to the memory of a recent success like "Avenue Q," a witty, melodious sendup of urban mores and post-graduation angst. But still, Broadway continues to shelter hokum like "Taboo," a production with such an acute case of meaning-deprivation that you almost forget what's happening as it's happening. The wasted actors -- as in misused -- include the estimable Raul Esparza, playing a cross-dressing London club promoter who narrates this musical-in-flashback. Esparza is so fired-up here you want the stagehands to keep him away from matches; he's a combustible presence, but if the performance were any more intense, it could embarrass even Mandy Patinkin.
6. THE STORY OF MY LIFE (2009), 5 PerformancesAdam Feldman, Time Out New York: “The Story of My Life” is a two-man musical with a dual personality. Half of Brian Hill and Neil Bartram’s well-meaning piece examines the tension between memory and fiction, as seen through the lives of two men with a knack for verbose self-reflection; the other half is a collage of cultural platitudes about butterflies, angels and snowflakes. The show can’t decide if it wants to be Stephen Sondheim or a gift shop in Topeka. “The Story of My Life” needs fewer stories and more life. It is hard to imagine that this snowflake of a show will survive in the Broadway drift: It has wings, but it doesn’t have a prayer. --- Ben Brantley, The New York Times: In addition to jettisoning the usual excesses of tourist-trapping extravaganzas, they have tossed away such niceties as originality, credibility, tension and excitement. I don't think it's spoiling anything to tell you that [Malcolm] Gets's character is dead when the show begins. So, for all practical purposes, is "The Story of My Life." And as directed by [Richard] Maltby, [actor Will] Chase (of "Lennon" and "High Fidelity") and Mr. Gets (a Tony nominee for "Amour") sing and act with winning (and, under the circumstances, merciful) restraint. It is to their infinite credit that even when they're extolling the precious glories of snow angels and a butterfly's wings, you don't feel like punching them in the face.
7. CRY BABY (2008), 68 PerformancesBen Brantley, The New York Times: There's no delicate way of putting this. Cry-Baby is ... tasteless. ... When I said "tasteless," I meant without flavor: sweet, sour, salty, putrid or otherwise. This show in search of an identity has all the saliva-stirring properties of week-old pre-chewed gum. --- Clive Barnes, New York Post: The music comes in two rocky flavors -- cheery and droopy. It's the kind of music that makes you wonder whether you've heard it before, just before you stop caring. --- Mary Carol McCauley, The Baltimore Sun: Opportunity knocked last night at the door of the Marquis Theatre, where Cry-Baby is making its Broadway debut. But nobody answered.
8. LEAP OF FAITH (2012), 19 PerformancesDavid Cote, Time Out New York: Want to make a ton of money? Peddle God to fools. Want to lose a ton of money? Invest in a Broadway turkey. You can’t have it both ways. It’s perfectly fine—even desirable—if your religion is crude and nonsensical, but a show as bland and confused as “Leap of Faith” is not going to make rich men of its producers (among whom are actual church leaders). The fake cash distributed by actors to audience members—so we may place it in the offertory baskets at Jonas Nightingale’s revivalist hoedowns—is all the green this wanly tacky production is likely to see.
9. LESTAT (2006), 39 PerformancesBen Brantley, The New York Times: A promising new contender has arrived in a crowded pharmaceutical field. Joining the ranks of Ambien, Lunesta, Sonata and other prescription lullaby drugs is “Lestat,” the musical sleeping pill that opened last night at the Palace Theater. Dare to look upon “Lestat” and keep your eyelids from growing heavier and heavier.
10. HURRY, HARRY (1972), 2 PerformancesClive Barnes, The New York Times: Muggings, massage parlors and disasters such as “Hurry, Harry” have all conspired to give Broadway a bad name. It is so feeble that even its opening is I suppose worthy of congratulation -- lesser men would have given up in the face of the inevitable. But the producer, Peter Grad, and the three people who wrote the book, the man who wrote the music, and the man who wrote the lyrics fought on in spite of everything. It is sad when this kind of thing happens-- sad for the backers, sad for the people who worked for it, sad for the critics forced to pan it. The critic in such circumstances is a particular innocent. Halfway through he is tempted in a paranoid fashion to wonder: “What did I ever do to you guys that you have to give me such a rotten night?’ Oh, well!”
11. GOOD VIBRATIONS (2005), 94 PerformancesBen Brantley, The New York Times: Even those who believe everything on this planet is here for a purpose may at first have trouble justifying the existence of "Good Vibrations," the singing headache that opened last night at the Eugene O'Neill Theater. But audience members strong enough to sit through this rickety jukebox of a show, which manages to purge all catchiness from the surpassingly catchy hits of the Beach Boys, will discover that the production does have a reason to be, and a noble one: "Good Vibrations" sacrifices itself, night after night and with considerable anguish, to make all other musicals on Broadway look good.
12. MARILYN: AN AMERICAN FABLE (1983), 17 PerformancesFrank Rich, The New York Times: If you read all the fine print in the Playbill for ''Marilyn: An American Fable,'' you'll discover that the new musical at the Minskoff has 16 producers and 10 songwriters. If you mistakenly look up from the Playbill to watch the show itself, you may wonder whether those 26 persons were ever in the same rehearsal room - or even the same city - at the same time. On top of its many other failings, ''Marilyn'' is incoherent to the point of being loony. I defy anyone to explain - just for starters - why 10 chorus boys dressed in pink plumbers' costumes sing a song about bubble baths at the climax of Act II. [post_title] => 12 Times The Critics Were Absolutely Savage (But Not Necessarily Wrong) [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 12-times-critics-were-absolutely-savage-not-necessarily-wrong [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-03-07 10:58:27 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-03-07 15:58:27 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=371432 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 2 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370978 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2019-03-05 09:26:17 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-03-05 14:26:17 [post_content] => Venturing into the happiest place on earth means ordering one too many Mickey pretzels, riding Space Mountain a dozen times, and coming face to face with The Mouse himself - but it can also mean a wide range of live entertainment. While Walt Disney World in Florida and Disneyland in California both offer plenty of fun just by being in their respective parks (themed attractions, parades, characters and fireworks galore!), the resorts are home to a number of exclusive live theatre shows.
If you’re looking to add a dash of theatre to your magical vacation, check out these eight stage shows:
1. Beauty And The Beast - Live On StageSet amidst the glitz and glamour of Disney’s Hollywood-themed park, “Beauty And The Beast - Live On Stage” is a 25-minute musical that brings the magic of the original film to the whole family. It’s the perfect quick theatre fix if you’re needing a break from long lines or simply need to recover after riding the park’s neighboring Tower Of Terror attraction. You won’t regret checking out this tale as old as time! Location: Hollywood Studios Times & Information: HERE
2. Festival Of The Lion KingIf “Hakuna Matata” is your vacation mantra, stop by the Animal Kingdom, Disney’s theme park celebrating the beauty of nature and wildlife. “Festival Of The Lion King” combines puppetry and a Broadway-style performance to pay tribute to one of Disney’s most classic films. Location: Animal Kingdom Times & Information: HERE
3. Finding Nemo - The MusicalChildren of all ages will adore “Finding Nemo - The Musical,” a colorful, visually-breathtaking stage musical tucked into Disney’s Animal Kingdom. It’s one of the resort’s longer live shows with a running time of approximately 40 minutes, and it’s the perfect entertainment if you’re looking to sit and enjoy some fun theatre. Location: Animal Kingdom Times & Information: HERE
4. For The First Time In Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along CelebrationSo you know the entire ‘Frozen’ soundtrack and just can’t let it go… If this is the case for you, Disney World’s adorable sing-along celebration is just your cup of hot cocoa. “For The First Time In Forever” is a fun live show (interspersed with visuals from the movie) that includes projected lyrics for your sing-along pleasure. In this audience, you’ll 100% find fans who do want to build a snowman. Location: Hollywood Studios Times & Information: HERE
5. Indiana Jones™ Epic Stunt Spectacular!Fans of the famous adventurer will be in awe of Disney World’s popular “Indiana Jones™ Epic Stunt Spectacular!” showcase. Filled with explosions, chaos, bad guys and audience participation, this production centers around recreating the epic stunts and tricks from “Raiders of the Lost Ark.” Location: Hollywood Studios Times & Information: HERE
6. Voyage Of The Little Mermaid
This brief 17-minute stage experience combines live performers and puppetry to uncover Ariel's tale. Belting the movie’s most popular tunes, “Voyage Of The Little Mermaid” is a nostalgic walk down memory lane for anyone who spent their childhood wishing to be under the sea. Location: Hollywood Studios Times & Information: HERE
7. Epcot International Festival of the Arts: Disney on Broadway Concert SeriesHERE
8. Frozen – Live at the HyperionImmerse yourself in the kingdom of Arendelle with Disneyland’s stage spectacular, “Frozen - Live At The Hyperion.” This one-hour musical retelling of the film takes place in the California Adventure Park at the regal Hyperion theatre. Location: California Adventure Times & Information: HERE
Have another magical show that you want to recommend? Share in the comments below![post_title] => 8 Live Performances You Can See At Disney World & Disneyland [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 8-live-performances-you-can-see-at-disney-world-disneyland [to_ping] => [pinged] => https://thekingdominsider.com/epcots-festival-arts-broadway-series-performances-announced/ [post_modified] => 2019-03-05 09:42:14 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-03-05 14:42:14 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=370978 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 1 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 371144 [post_author] => 2182 [post_date] => 2019-02-27 09:34:16 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-02-27 14:34:16 [post_content] => Listening to cast albums and watching Instagram Live stories are great and wonderful, but what happens when you just need to see Broadway stars in a binge-able way? Here are a few of our favorite stage stars and where you can see them!
1. Tituss Burgessvia GIPHY
“The Little Mermaid” on Broadway’s original Sebastian has his star turn as a wannabe Broadway actor on Netflix’s recently finished “The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.” Titus Andromedon came from the deep south, where boys who wanted to do musical theatre were considered… different. He finally makes it to New York, where he meets Kimmy and Lillian, who encourage him to follow his dreams. This Netflix original series released part two of its final season in January 2019, and is still available to stream.
2. Darren Crissvia GIPHY Our favorite StarKid has been very busy since his starring role as Blaine in “Glee.” He portrayed killer Andrew Cunanan in “American Crime Story: The Assassination of Gianni Versace” in the beginning of 2018. For his unnerving performance, Criss earned a Primetime Emmy, two Screen Actors Guild awards, a Golden Globe, a Gold Derby award, and a whole slew of nominations. You can watch this FX miniseries on Netflix.
3. Meryl Streepvia GIPHY Film’s greatest living actress and the Tony award-winning powerhouse that is Meryl Streep is coming to “Big Little Lies” season two this June. She will star as Mary Louise Wright, Perry Wright’s mother, who comes to Monterey looking for answers. “Big Little Lies” is based on the novel of the same name by author Liane Moriarty. The first season of the hit show is available on HBO, which leaves plenty of time for us to binge watch before the second season hits our screens!
4. Kristin Chenowethvia GIPHY On NBC’s “Trial and Error,” Chenoweth lets her bubbly persona shine as she plays the first lady of East Peck, Lavinia Peck-Foster, who is on trial for the murder of her husband. “Trial and Error” is a spoof of a true crime series; season one focused on another “trial,” the defendant being played by John Lithgow. This series isn’t currently available to stream (Netflix, we’re looking at you!), but if you’re dedicated, each episode is available for purchase on YouTube, Vudu, iTunes, and Google Play.
5. Viola Davisvia GIPHY The phenomenal Viola Davis from the ABC hit “How to Get Away with Murder” holds the distinction of being the first black person to have earned the “Triple Crown of Acting,” being the trifecta of a Tony, an Academy, and an Emmy award. Davis has garnered high praise for her work as Annalise Keating, a law professor who becomes dangerously ensnared in a murder plot with five of her students. “How to Get Away with Murder” is available on both Netflix and Hulu.
6. Josh Grobanvia GIPHY The Tony-winning “tenor in training” landed himself a Netflix original series with Tony Danza, titled “The Good Cop.” Groban is a pathologically “good cop,” whose father was also in the NYPD - but the opposite of good. This is a funny, easy-to-watch comedic crime series, especially if you’re a fan of the classic “good cop, bad cop” trope. Season one is available to stream on Netflix.
7. Nathan Lanevia GIPHY The three-time Tony award-winning superstar plays a recurring role as Pepper Saltzman on ABC’s “Modern Family.” This mockumentary follows a mixed family’s daily life in suburban Los Angeles. Pepper is a flamboyant friend of the married couple Cameron and Mitchell. “Modern Family” is ABC’s longest running comedy series, having been aired since its premiere in 2009. You can stream this sitcom on Hulu or for free on ABC’s website. Whatever you choose to binge, you can support your favorite stage stars along the way! Did we miss your favorite? Leave a comment below... [post_title] => Here's Where You Can Find Your Favorite Stage Stars On Television [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => heres-where-you-can-find-your-favorite-stage-stars-on-television [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-02-27 09:34:16 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-02-27 14:34:16 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=371144 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370776 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2019-02-26 10:28:39 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-02-26 15:28:39 [post_content] => New year, new you, new TV shows to marathon! Similar to theatre, television breathes life into stories that are important, progressive, tragic, funny, outrageous and joyful. Whether it be through a streamable platform or via a good-old-fashioned network, current TV offers plenty of picks that could translate well to the stage. From the quick-witted antics of Midge in ‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’ to the devious plots of Count Olaf in ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events,’ we’ve rounded up nine shows airing this year that we think deserve a theatrical adaptation:
1. ‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’Amazon Prime’s award-winning original has swept audiences by storm with its quirky slew of characters, its lovable leading lady, its smart dialogue and its empowering story. Enter Midge Maisel, a spunky housewife living on the Upper West Side of New York City during the 1950s. With a husband, two children, and a wardrobe fit for a queen, Midge’s charmed life seems picture perfect...until her husband unexpectedly leaves, and she stumbles into a whirlwind stand-up comedy career. With a cast of colorful characters and plenty of hilarious mishaps (plus actual comedy routines), ‘Maisel’ is a shoo-in for a fabulous theatrical makeover.
2. ‘You’The Broadway stage is no stranger to dark comedies and Netflix’s latest creepy series, ‘You’, has the potential to find its place in the theatre world. This psychological thriller quite literally follows Beck, an aspiring writer in New York City, through the eyes of her stalker, Joe Goldberg. While narrator Joe first comes across as your typical all-American guy in his twenties, an unsettling truth starts to unravel. ‘You’ is suspenseful, dramatic and could certainly make for musical material.
3. ‘The Good Place’Imagine arriving at the pearly white gates of heaven only to find there’s been a mix-up, and you’re not supposed to be there... That’s fate for Eleanor Shellstrop (Kristen Bell) in NBC’s ‘The Good Place’. This light-hearted comedy series is full of silly twists and turns and delivers some meaningful messages too. Give us a choir of singing angels, a dancing Janet, an ensemble number about all of The Good Place’s frozen yogurt joints, and Broadway is sure to be forkin’ blessed.
4. ‘A Series Of Unfortunate Events’A tap-dancing Count Olaf and some belting Baudelaires - we’re all about the concept of ‘A Series Of Unfortunate Events: The Musical’. This popular children’s book series- turned-Netflix-show has more than enough drama to keep audiences engaged as they watch Violet, Klaus, and Sunny narrowly escape the clutches of one ominous count. (Petition for Neil Patrick Harris to reprise Count Olaf in the Broadway musical?)
5. ‘The Chilling Adventures Of Sabrina’The life of Sabrina Spellman no longer requires a laugh track in Netflix’s new iteration exploring the highs and lows of being a teenage witch in the normal human world. Based on a comic series of the same name, ‘The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina’ is a revamped, mystical TV show centered around its beloved half-witch, half-mortal heroine. A pinch of music, a dust of magic and a healthy dose of high school drama seems like the perfect brew for a stage adaptation that will give us chills.
6. ‘Pose’Last year, ‘Glee’ creators Ryan Murphy and Bryan Falchuk reunited to bring the first season of ‘Pose’ to FX. This distinctive series acts as a commentary on life in New York City for a diverse ensemble of characters during the 1980s. The show includes plenty of music and dives deep into something as simple as someone's everyday life, which is why we think ‘Pose’ would make impactful theatre.
7. ‘The Handmaid's Tale’While we’re not so sure this Hulu masterpiece lends itself to song and dance, a live retelling of ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ saga would most certainly be a powerful production onstage. For centuries, theatre has embraced progressive storytelling - and this dystopian society in which women are forced into various roles such as child-bearers (otherwise known as “handmaids”) carries some pretty heavy albeit essential themes. The show does take audiences through different facets of the Gilead republic but focuses primarily on the hardships of one enslaved woman called June. Watching June’s journey unfold onstage is bound to make for a night of thought-provoking theatre.
8. ‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’If you’re a fan of Netflix’s wild series, ‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’, which culminated in January of 2019, you’ve probably watched those Titus Andromedon musical numbers on repeat. Throughout the comedy’s four seasons, Kimmy Schmidt’s best friend Titus (a theatre nerd if there ever was one) continuously makes musical theatre references and even breaks out into song. As for the show’s premise? In the very first episode, Kimmy is rescued from an underground bunker where she was held hostage by a crazy cult leader for the past 15 years, and must then cope with adjusting to modern-day city life.
9. ‘Game Of Thrones’Winter may be coming for the very last time in 2019, but our fingers are crossed for George R. R. Martin’s massive phenomenon to receive the theatre treatment somewhere down the road. While putting together a production of this scale would undoubtedly prove a challenge (there are dragons after all), experiencing the Seven Kingdoms onstage would be worth it. Though the journeys that take place in this fantasy realm are complex, HBO’s series shares tales of love, loss, family, and the battle between good versus evil. Kisha laz atthirarido… that’s “we can dream” in Dothraki.
Have another show you want to see adapted to theatre? Share in the comments below![post_title] => 9 TV Shows In 2019 That Are Made For The Stage [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 9-tv-shows-2019-made-for-stage [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-02-26 10:30:29 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-02-26 15:30:29 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=370776 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 1 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 366124 [post_author] => 1873 [post_date] => 2019-02-24 19:34:33 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-02-25 00:34:33 [post_content] => How well do you know the Book of Mormon? [post_title] => Book Of Mormon Trivia [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => book-of-mormon-trivia [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-02-24 19:34:33 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-02-25 00:34:33 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?post_type=snax_quiz&p=366124 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => snax_quiz [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370997 [post_author] => 2137 [post_date] => 2019-02-19 09:46:07 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-02-19 14:46:07 [post_content] =>
The best lesson that my theatre teachers in high school could have ever taught me was to keep going even when you think you can’t. Every time that cast list went up and my name wasn’t where I wanted it to be, I was devastated. But I kept showing up. I kept taking on responsibilities and did my best to help out wherever possible.We all have them. Those teachers who stick with you, even years after you have them in class. Every time you pull out the yearbook, you’re instantly flooded with memories once you come across their picture on the faculty page. These teachers didn’t just teach you what was in the syllabus. They taught you life lessons too. Lessons that stick with you for years after graduation. The very fact that you can recall these teachers shows the enormous impact that they had on you. If you were a theatre kid like I was (and still am), I’m willing to bet that this influential person was none other than your theatre teacher. They were most likely your favorite teacher (or if you had a bad experience, your least favorite). You most likely spent hours upon hours of rehearsals, tech nights, and performances with them. And most likely, they knew way too much about your personal life. If this is sounding a lot like your high school theatre experience, you’re not alone. My high school was huge. Over 2,000 students filled the hallways every day. When you already have a small circle of people you can call friends, those 2,000 classmates can feel like 2,000 strangers. By sophomore year, I was entirely out of options as for where to sit and eat lunch in the cafeteria. I remember one day very vividly. I had become so frustrated with finding a seat in the cafeteria. I had been bouncing around from table to table, trying to find a group of kids that I felt comfortable enough sitting with. Finally, I asked the cafeteria worker for a styrofoam tray and booked it to the orchestra room. I figured it would be better to eat alone in the orchestra room out of sight from the 800 kids sitting in the cafeteria than to put myself on public display as the kid who was sitting alone at lunch. That was when my orchestra teacher and high school musical director poked her head out of her office and asked me what I was doing. Me, thinking I was in trouble, tried to come up with an excuse as to why I was sitting alone in the orchestra room with my lunch. Instead of responding with anger (not that I expected her to), she invited me into her office where we launched ourselves into a discussion about the latest shows hitting Broadway that season. I finished my lunch and headed off to my next class, feeling much better about my day. That one day turned into a series of days eating lunch in my director’s office. Pretty soon, I was eating lunch there every day. I started helping out with things around her office, becoming the second pair of eyes when it came to looking over program revisions for the upcoming spring musical. I took over the responsibility of managing the costume closet that held the various costumes of musicals past. I learned so much about the business behind theatre because my theatre teacher allowed me the opportunity to do so. By the time senior year had rolled around, I took the title of “Student Business Manager.” But by then, it was truly just a formality. Over time, a few of my musical friends had started dropping in. We felt safe in the orchestra room with our musical director. She made us feel included and like we belonged. I know it’s a cliche of sorts to say that your students become your kids, but honestly my teacher was like a second mother to me. Her office was practically a second home for me and a few others. Some of us had pitched in together to buy a Keurig for the back room, further fueling my coffee addiction. At one point there was a panini maker, but once my teacher smelled bacon, she shut that down real quick. Seeing how passionate my teacher was about theatre made me passionate about theatre. She inspired me to pursue this as a career, but most importantly, always keep a love for theatre burning within me. Were there moments where I was frustrated? Sure. Every time a cast list was posted. I never got the part I wanted in the school musical. I was always the sidekick or a featured part. It took me until senior year to finally get even a supporting role. But did I let that stop my passion or the relationship that I had established with my director? No. The best lesson that my theatre teachers in high school could have ever taught me was to keep going even when you think you can’t. Every time that cast list went up and my name wasn’t where I wanted it to be, I was devastated. But I kept showing up. I kept taking on responsibilities and did my best to help out wherever possible. These were life lessons that my theatre teachers were teaching me. What matters more than how you accept victory is how you deal with defeat. I didn’t realize it at the time, but now almost a year following my high school graduation, I do. The remarkable thing is that even though I am graduated and off at college, they are still teaching me. Now and then I’ll find myself shooting off a text or e-mail to an old teacher asking for advice. And they’ll give it to me. Or vice-versa, they’ll check in and see how college is going. That is the sign of a teacher who cares. My high school orchestra teacher wasn’t the only important theatre teacher in my life. I’ve had many, many others. Each of them worthy of an entire article just for themselves. Maybe I’ll share those stories someday. But the fact of the matter is, I have been blessed to have so many significant role models in my life that have shared their love of theatre with me, therefore fostering an appreciation of the art form within myself. Whether you had a positive or negative experience with your high school theatre teacher (and whether you’ll admit it or not), they were fundamental in your development as an artist. Middle school and high school theatre are where we’re first exposed to this great art form. The educators that facilitate these programs in our schools have a tremendous task. They don’t just teach theatre. Theatre is not just acting out words on stage. Theatre is history. Theatre is music. Theatre is a science. Theatre is a math. Theatre is foreign language. Theatre is all of it wrapped in one. Our theatre teachers are tasked with teaching life. That is their importance.
Did you have an influential theatre teacher in your life? Tell us about them in the comments below![post_title] => The Importance Of Theatre Teachers [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => the-importance-of-theatre-teachers [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-02-20 10:40:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-02-20 15:40:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=370997 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 1 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370986 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2019-02-18 16:35:20 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-02-18 21:35:20 [post_content] => [adthrive-in-post-video-player video-id="UjeECiVZ" upload-date="2019-02-18T16:51:46.000Z" name="Amazing A Cappella Group Sings 37 Musicals In 7 Minutes" description="A Cappella group sings 37 musicals in 7 minutes."] We legit can't stop watching this... 37 musicals in 7 minutes courtesy of The Bluebelles [post_title] => Amazing A Cappella Group Sings 37 Musicals In 7 Minutes [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => amazing-a-cappella-group-sings-37-musicals-in-7-minutes [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-02-18 16:35:20 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-02-18 21:35:20 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=370986 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370961 [post_author] => 2192 [post_date] => 2019-02-15 08:40:16 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-02-15 13:40:16 [post_content] => It’s hard to imagine but, once upon a time, there was no such thing as a “director” -- at least not as we know them today. Back in Ancient Greece, staging a show was predominantly the responsibility of the playwright. In medieval times when the church presented large scale pageant plays, the role of the director more closely resembled that of a modern stage manager (coordinating how the scenery would function, making sure everyone was standing where they were supposed to be, etc.). During the Renaissance, another figure took prominence: the “actor-director.” This was a senior member of the troupe that served as master for staging and helped cultivate a performance from the cast. It wasn’t until after World War II that the modern director began to reign supreme. Today, the director has many responsibilities. Some are microscopic, and some are monumental. Chiefly, the director must guide the team in defining the artistic shape of the production. They must set the parameters of the world that is being created. This earns them the right to have an opinion on everything (whether or not that opinion is voiced and/or heeded). And while most people would jump at the chance to be in charge, it is important to remember that with great power comes great responsibility. To be a director, you have to prove yourself a leader worth following. Here’s how…
1. Do Your Researchvia GIPHY Are you allergic to homework? Do book reports make you drowsy? Would you rather be dead than go to the library? Then, buddy, this is NOT the job for you. Like the genre itself, directing starts on the page. Before your first rehearsal, you’ll need to have a general understanding of the show’s historical context, references and themes. Even looking up the reviews of the original production might influence your interpretation. Granted, this doesn’t mean you have to know EVERYTHING… but if you intend to be a leader worth following, being a smarty-pants surely doesn’t hurt.
2. Be Organized & Stay OrganizedThe quickest and easiest way to have people turn against you is to waste their time. So, make a schedule and STICK TO IT. After all, you can’t earn respect unless you offer it. Don’t run over in a session (“Oh, just another 10 minutes!”), don’t be late (“Sorry to keep you all waiting!”) and don’t skip breaks (“You can just push through, right?!”). And be realistic with your expectations; you know you’re not going to get a production number staged in 45 minutes. Also, know what pages you are staging in that session; be familiar with them and have them handy. No one wants to work with a fumbling doofus.
3. Don’t Over-PlanI know what you’re thinking: “Wait... didn’t you just tell me to research until my eyes bleed and schedule every time I’ll need to pee?” Well, yeah… BUT -- this is where you have to show a little restraint. Remember: you’re the director, not the dictator; if you have an answer for every question, you’re not only doing your job, you’re doing everyone else’s. And that’s ANNOYING. Giving actors line-readings (performing the role for them instead of coaching them to find a performance) invalidates their creative input. As much as you can, allow for happy accidents. Encourage people to make their own discoveries by answering questions with more questions. When they find the answer “independently”, there is a sense of ownership that will really show in the work.
4. Collaboratevia GIPHY The best idea in the room doesn’t have to be your own. You’ve assembled a room full of talented and creative people. So… LET THEM BE TALENTED AND CREATIVE! Learn to listen; listen to learn.
5. Study ArtStaging is HARD. Composition is one of the most difficult concepts for young directors to grasp. There are lots of little rules: actors should stand in triangles, people need to “cheat out” to see faces, asymmetry is your friend, etc. An easy way to develop your eye is to study the Old Masters (basically any painter working before 1800… or anyone with the same name as a Ninja Turtle). Find paintings of crowd scenes in particular. Take note of how the artist places his/her subjects to achieve peak visibility and drama. See how you can adapt their work. After all, the proscenium stage is modeled after the frame of a painting.
6. Steal CreativelyNobody likes a thief (especially not Javert…). It doesn’t matter that you saw the original production 50 times; as the director, it’s your job to figure out how the story will be told anew. Copying another production’s staging/choreography is THEFT. That work is/was someone else’s intellectual property. You can let their work influence you, sure -- there’s a reason the show was successful in the first place. But steal creatively. When you see a show, take note of elements you admire. But don’t be dumb about it. You’d be surprised how inconspicuously the end of the first act of “Sunday in the Park with George” fits into the chorale of “The Pirates of Penzance.” And the audience (and critics) will be none-the-wiser. And if they are? Well, just call it an homage...
7. Don’t Be a Jerkvia GIPHY This one sounds like a no-brainer, but… ugh, you’d be surprised. A lot of what a director does is to encourage other artists to deliver their best work. That’s not going to happen when people are scared of you. You can be tough and challenging, for sure. But don’t be a bully! Like, never ever. Behaving like a tyrant is sabotage to the creative process. And be brave enough to apologize when you have to; it doesn’t make you weak to say you’re sorry when it’s due. It’s like your mother always said: treat others the way you want to be treated.
8. Find the HumanityTheater is magic. To breathe the same air as artists while they create for you in real-time -- it’s an experience that is unparalleled. Simply put: there is no other form that can so closely replicate real life. Those are the moments to strive for, those moments of truth. One way to emphasize this is to ask yourself constantly while watching, “Does this feed my sense of truth?” If not, consider what changes can be made or notes can be given. But remember: the sense of truth shifts from show to show. The reality of “Mamma Mia!” is very different from that of “A Little Night Music.” Always aim for truth within the construct of the reality you are creating.
9. Know Your Audiencevia GIPHY Directing a show for kids? Then maybe your actors need to keep their pants on… The point is: always remain aware of the intended audience for your work. For example, the church-going crowd doesn’t like vulgarity. Even if you [BLEEP]-ing love swears, you may have to find ways to tone things down the product to meet the audience’s ethical standards without compromising your artistic integrity OR the integrity of the work as written (no one said this job was going to be easy…) After all, the audience is the reason you have a job in the first place. Respect them and they’ll respect you.
10. Honor the PlaywrightThe most important person in the rehearsal room is always the playwright; it doesn’t matter if they’ve been dead for 2,400 years (here’s looking at you, Aristophanes…). It was the playwright’s idea that brought everyone together. Therefore, it is your primary responsibility as director to tell the story as they intended. Have a crazy concept for a show? Cool. Before you try to cram it into your new-fangled box, ask yourself, “Does this idea serve the play as written?” If not, you’re editorializing. In the theater, the playwright is God. The director just gets to spread the blessed word. [post_title] => AGAIN, FROM THE TOP: 10 Tips For Young Directors [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 10-tips-for-young-directors [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-02-15 08:50:44 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-02-15 13:50:44 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=370961 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370265 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2019-02-12 09:20:10 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-02-12 14:20:10 [post_content] => [post_title] => Poll: Which 'Hamilton' Song Is The Best Jamilton? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => poll-which-hamilton-song-is-the-best-jamilton [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-02-12 09:20:10 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-02-12 14:20:10 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?post_type=snax_poll&p=370265 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => snax_poll [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370895 [post_author] => 2133 [post_date] => 2019-02-09 21:20:58 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-02-10 02:20:58 [post_content] => Since 2003, the musical adaption of Gregory Maguire's hit novel "Wicked: the Lives and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West" has mystified fans worldwide. The musical tells the story of Elphaba (future Wicked Witch) and how she became "wicked." G(a)linda has a prominent role as well as Elphaba's roommate and reluctant friend. The roles were originated by Idina Menzel (who won the Tony for Best Actress) and Kristin Chenoweth. The show is currently the sixth longest-running show on Broadway, grossing over $1.3 billion. For years, rumors have circulated that a film adaption is in the works. Back in 2015, Lea Michelle and Harry Styles were listed as Elphaba and Fiyero on the IMDB page for the movie. In 2017, former Pussycat Dolls lead singer, Nicole Scherzinger was rumored to be vying for the leading role of Elphaba. Also in 2017, the show writer Stephen Schwartz confirmed that a film adaption is in the works and gave fans a release date: December 20, 2019! However, after the announcement that Andrew Lloyd Webber's hit musical "Cats" is getting the feature film treatment, the "Wicked" movie once again fell by the wayside...until February 8th, 2019, when it was announced that at last (hopefully) the film will be released on December 22, 2021. Little is known about the film except that Stephen Daldry will direct, Winnie Holtzman (who wrote the book for the musical) will pen the script along with Stephen Schwartz, and Mark Platt is set to produce. I am so excited for this movie! "Wicked" is one of my all-time favorite musicals. Ideally, I would love for Idina and Kristin to reprise their roles, but I understand that they are both too old to play college-aged girls. However, the second act could be set 20 years down the road, and then the door could be open for them to come back. I have some ideas for the main cast as I would have it. Given my deep affection for the show, I am incredibly protective and critical of the unreleased casting. Some musicals can succeed with leads that act better than sing, but "Wicked" is not one of those shows. From Elphaba belting out "Defying Gravity" and "No Good Deed" and G(a)linda's operatic notes, powerhouse vocalists are required to do the show justice. First off, I definitely think the vocals should be live in the movie. With the success of other live musicals such as the 2012 "Les Miserables" film and "Across the Universe" in 2007, the idea of using live vocals as opposed to the traditional prerecorded tracks has become slightly more popular. Personally, I feel that using the actor's live vocals adds intimacy and rawness to a movie that can't be accomplished by lip-synching. That's why I'm hoping that real singers are cast instead of actresses.
Here are my top picks for the movie cast, as well as some honorable mentions.
1. Elphaba: Samantha BarksThis British songstress got her start on the musical reality series "I'd Do Anything" in 2008, where she competed for the role of Nancy in a new production of "Oliver." She performed "Defying Gravity" on the show, and came in third, but after playing the role of Eponine in the West End as well as the 25th Anniversary concert, she went on to play Nancy, before reprising her role of Eponine for the "Les Mis" movie. Currently starring as Vivian in the Broadway production of "Pretty Woman the Musical," Barks' other theatre credits include Velma Kelly in the Hollywood Bowl production of "Chicago," and Kathy" in the West End production of "The Last Five Years." She's an incredibly talented vocalist and actress and has proven more than once that she has the pipes to wear Elphaba's hat.
2. G(a)linda: Perrie EdwardsA 1/4 of British girl group Little Mix, Perrie Edwards is known for her stellar voice. Though she does not often get to showcase her operatic skills, Edwards is capable of hitting impressive high notes. I don't know how good of an actress she is, but I think with a dialect coach's help to mask her British accent, she could make a wonderful G(a)linda.
3. Fiyero: Brendon UrieThe Panic! at the Disco frontman is known for his versatile voice, impressive vocal range, love of dance, and dashing good looks. I think that if anyone could pull off Fiyero's swagger and bring his "Dancing Through Life" number to new levels of amazing, Urie is a perfect choice. At 31, he's a little old to play the role, but he looks a lot younger, and I'd love to see him play a bad boy. During his stint in "Kinky Boots" on Broadway, he impressed fans with his acting and vocals.
4. Madame Morrible: Meryl StreepMeryl Streep is undeniably the greatest actress in the business. While she is less known for singing ability, Streep did get her start on Broadway and had starred in three musical film adaptions: "Mamma Mia!," "Into the Woods," and "Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again" as well as singing in such films as "Postcards From the Edge" and "Ricki and the Flash." The role of Madame Morrible is not huge, but Meryl would definitely be able to steal the show in the role, channeling her character of Miranda from "The Devil Wears Prada" with Morrible's icy demeanor and caustic insults.
5. The Wizard: Hugh JackmanThe Aussie heartthrob is best known for his role as Wolverine in the "X-Men" franchise films, but he is also a song and dance man. He starred as Jean Valjean in the "Les Mis" film, as well as P. T. Barnum in "The Greatest Showman." His theatre credits include originating the role of Peter Allen in "The Boy From Oz" on Broadway as well as his one-man show, in which he sang pop tunes as well as old theatre favorites. It would be nice to see Jackman not play the hero for once, though the role of the Wizard is more an anti-hero than a traditional villain.
6. Nessarose: Barrett Wilbert WeedThis theatre actress is best known for originating the roles of Veronica in "Heathers: the Musical" off-Broadway and Janice in "Mean Girls" on Broadway. Possessing solid rock 'n roll vocal abilities, Weed would nail the minor role of Nessarose. I'd bet she could pull off vindictive spoiled brat very well, but convey a hint of Nessarose's inner fragility.
Honorable Mentions:Elphaba: Ciara Renée, Naya Rivera, Cynthia Erivo, Emili Sandé, Leona Lewis, Rita Ora, Anna Kendrick, Demi Lovato, Lea Michele, Jessie J. G(a)linda: Amanda Seyfried, Megan Hilty, Kristen Bell. Fiyero: Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, Jonathan Groff (only with Lea Michele,) Darren Criss, Shawn Mendes. Madame Morrible: Helena Bonham Carter, Jessica Lange, Michelle Pfeiffer. The Wizard: Joel Grey, Christopher Walken, Sir Patrick Stewart, Matthew Broderick, Nessarose: Lea Michele [post_title] => 'Wicked: The Movie' Dream Cast [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => wicked-movie-dream-cast [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-02-11 09:37:17 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-02-11 14:37:17 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=370895 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370783 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2019-02-07 10:40:31 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-02-07 15:40:31 [post_content] =>
Here are five acting exercises from my book 100 Acting exercises for 8–18-Year-Olds to help children and teenagers to improve their acting technique:
1. Packing a bag with given circumstancesAn acting exercise where students do a simple action and add dimension to it by applying given circumstances. Age: 8 plus. Skills: Creating a character, focus, improvisation, mime, and imagination. Participants: This can be practiced alone or in a group. Time: 10–20 minutes. You’ll need: A room large enough for students to spread out and find a quiet space. How to: The students find a space in the room and sit down on their own. The student imagines that they are packing a bag for an event; perhaps they are going on holiday, on a school trip, to school, to the gym, or traveling for a year, or even that they’ve been assigned to a spy mission. Explain that they can be any character they want, but they must know at least three of their given circumstances. For example, it’s your first day at high school, you’re in your tidy bedroom with everything neatly laid out on the sofa bed, and you have stomach cramps. Or you are leaving home, you are in a rush because you don’t want your parents to find out, you have a headache, and your stuff is spread all over the room because you threw it all over the place in a rage. Give the students a few minutes to mime packing their bags under a particular set of given circumstances and then ask them to try again with a brand-new set of circumstances. This can be done three or four times. Variation: This exercise can also be done with a real bag and real objects. However, this can be distracting and too leading. If practiced this way, explain the exercise the week before to students and ask them to bring in a bag and some objects. It can be good for students to swap their bags and objects with others so that the items they are using don’t hold too many set connotations. Tip: Students shouldn’t rush this exercise or feel that they have to talk or perform. Subtle actions and reactions can be very intriguing, and these should come naturally if the student is playing the given circumstances.
2. Changing the tempoA fun warm-up game where students explore the different speeds people operate at. Age: 8 plus. Skills: Creating a character, imagination, and movement. Participants: This exercise can be done alone or in a group. Time: 5–15 minutes. You’ll need: A room big enough for students to walk around in. How to: Students find a space in the room, and the teacher explains how different People move at different speeds. Ask the students to think of someone they know who moves around at top pace and someone they know who moves around very slowly. Now explain that they are going to move around the room at different speeds, which will vary depending on what number the teacher calls out. If the teacher calls out number one, students will move at a very slow speed, and if the number ten is called out, they will move at a fast pace. Students then add a character inspired by the speed. If number two is called out, for example, a suitable character might be a person who is at ease on holiday at the beach or a person who isn’t very enthusiastic about going somewhere. Then, if the number eight is called, the actor might walk around the room fast as if they are late for a meeting or excited on their way to the gates at Disney. Running isn’t allowed in this exercise, even when the number ten is called; a fast walk is the maximum speed allowed. The teacher calls out all the different numbers, asking students to come up with characters and situations for each number. Ask the students to choose their favorite character and speed from the ones they just experimented with. Some students may choose a slow character, number one or two, and others may choose a fast one, nine or ten. Ask the students to walk around the room as their chosen character. Instantly, the diversity of speeds will create an interesting scene and annoyances, and conflicts emerge as people get in each other’s way. Variation: Ask the students to get into pairs; within the pair, one will play a low-speed person and the other a high-speed person, but despite this, they both have the same objective. Perhaps they are looking for a lost dog, trying to complete a school assessment or trying to tidy a room. Conflict will arise in this scene because they are playing opposite tempos, and it’s quite likely some comedy will spring from this. Tip: Explain to students not just to focus on the speed of which a character walks but also to consider the speed of their body language. Someone at a number ten, for example, might have very rapid and frequent body language.
3. Favorite featureAn acting exercise to encourage the actor to move in new ways. Age: 8 plus. Skills: Creating a character, movement, and mime. Participants: This exercise can be done alone or in a group. Time: 10–15 minutes. You’ll need: A room students can move around in. How to: Start by asking students to walk around the room. Explain that when you call out a body part, the student is to imagine this is their favorite feature about themselves. Let’s say the teacher calls out ‘eyes’; the students will then walk around imagining that their eyes are their favorite feature. Now ask the students to all shake hands with another student and introduce themselves, still with their eyes as their favorite feature. People’s movements are often influenced by what they like and dislike about themselves. If your favorite feature about yourself is your eyes, you may open them wide, make them expressive while you talk and be keen to make eye contact. Ask the students to move around the room introducing themselves to as many different people as possible with their eyes as their favorite feature. Then after a few minutes, change the body part so that now the hands are their favorite feature. Carry on like this, changing the favorite feature every so often. Other body parts may include the feet, waist, collarbone, lips, and hair. When working with under 18s, it is essential to avoid the more genital areas of the body in this exercise. Variation one: What you don’t like about yourself can also influence movement. A fun variation of the above exercise is to call out a body part that the student can imagine they don’t like about themselves. So if you called ‘lips’, for example, the actor would imagine they don’t like their lips; they might keep touching and covering their lips when introducing themselves, or they might bite their lips or turn their head down slightly to draw attention away from their lips. Variation two: Another variation is to do one favorite feature and one feature you don’t like about yourself at the same time. For example, ‘you like your hair, but you dislike your nose’. Tip: Ask students to think about their own movement in everyday life and how their favorite and least favorite features about themselves affect their movement. However, don’t ask them to share this information with the class as it’s private.
4. Creating given circumstances for fairy-tale charactersAn academic and imaginative exercise to encourage students to create backstories for characters. Age: 8 plus. Skills: Spontaneity, creating a character, imagination and character building. Participants: This exercise can be done alone or in a group. Time: 10–20 minutes. You’ll need: A pen and paper for each student. How to: Ask the students to think of one character from a fairy tale and a scene from the fairy tale featuring this character – for example, when Jack sells his cow Daisy, or when Snow White takes an apple from the disguised queen, or when the wolf talks to Little Red Riding Hood in the woods. Now ask the students to take that character and scene and to answer the questions below:
- What’s the character’s name?
- What are their hobbies?
- What don’t they like?
- What are their favorite things?
- Do they have any enemies?
- How old are they?
- Where do they live?
- Who makes up their family?
- Do they have any friends?
- How have they found themselves in the situation they are in?
- What are their surroundings like at the moment?
- Are they cold, hot, hungry, in a rush or in any pain?
5. I’m sorry I ...A fast-paced improvisation exercise perfect for a group warm-up. Age: 8 plus. Skills: Listening, spontaneity, imagination, and improvisation. Participants: This needs to be done in a group of five or more. Time: 10–15 minutes. You’ll need: A room big enough to sit in a circle. How to: The group sits in a circle, and one person – let’s call her Rania – starts by standing up. Rania approaches a person sitting in the circle, and she apologizes for something. Let’s say she approaches Maya. Rania might be very sorry because she has lost Maya’s pet dog, she’s smashed Maya’s phone or she’s cast an irreversible spell on Maya’s brother. Maya can react in any way she likes. She could be sad, cross or maybe even pleased about the accident. What’s vital here is that whatever Rania is apologizing for, Maya goes along with it. Once the short improvisation comes to an end, Maya will then pick someone else in the circle and approach them to apologize for something. Maya might go over to Vadim, for example, and apologize for getting mud on his coat. But if Vadim asks to pass, that’s okay; Maya can pick someone else. Improvisation must never be forced onto anyone as that could put them off for life. Chances are if Vadim is given a few weeks in class just to watch, in a few weeks’ time, he will join in with an improvisation exercise on his own accord once he’s ready. Tip: It can be fun when students play this game in character. Explain to students that they can be any character they like – a school teacher, princess or astronaut. Once they think of a character, it is likely to give them inspiration for something to be sorry for. About 100 Acting Exercises for 8 - 18 Year Olds SEE ON AMAZON Theories and techniques of some of the greatest theatre practitioners including Sanford Meisner, Constantin Stanislavski, Lee Strasberg, and Uta Hagen provide a basis for Samantha Marsden's original exercises. The exercises have been tried and tested in the author's own classroom. Focus points used in leading drama schools such as voice, movement, relaxation, character development, and understanding text are recreated for a younger student. The book features a foreword by Paul Roseby, CEO and Artistic Director of the National Youth Theatre. “Here is the book that every drama teacher should have on their shelf” – Sylvia Young, OBE “An excellent resource. In it, acting coaches and their young students will find daily inspiration.” – Robert McKee, author, lecturer and story consultant “Every young actor that wants a working instrument should do these great, fun and practical exercises” – Michelle Danner, Artistic Director of the Michelle Danner Acting Studio About the Author Samantha Marsden studied method acting at The Method Studio in London. She went on to study Drama, Applied Theatre and Education at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. She worked as a freelance drama teacher for eleven years at theatre companies, youth theatres, private schools, state schools, special schools and weekend theatre schools. In 2012 she set up her own youth theatre, which quickly grew into one of the largest regional youth theatres in the country. [post_title] => Five Acting Exercises for 8–18-Year-Olds [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => five-acting-exercises-for-8-18-year-olds [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-02-07 11:58:32 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-02-07 16:58:32 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=370783 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370678 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2019-02-05 10:28:42 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-02-05 15:28:42 [post_content] => Finally, a quiz acknowledging the fact you named your hamster Patti LuPone. [post_title] => Quiz: Tell Us About Your Pet And We'll Tell You What % Drama Queen You Are [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => quiz-tell-us-about-your-pet-and-well-tell-you-what-drama-queen-you-are [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-02-05 10:29:39 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-02-05 15:29:39 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?post_type=snax_quiz&p=370678 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => snax_quiz [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 1 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370661 [post_author] => 2133 [post_date] => 2019-02-01 10:08:59 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-02-01 15:08:59 [post_content] => Brendon Urie is best known as the lead singer and only remaining original member of rock group Panic! at the Disco. In an industry where artists are chosen more for their looks and marketability than talent, and auto-tune is every talentless singer's best friend, Brendon is one of the rare true talents. Not only does he write the majority of the music, but he's also an insanely talented vocalist who continues to wow fans with his pipes. He possesses a tenor voice, which encompasses four octaves (D2 to C7.) Urie made his debut on Broadway in "Kinky Boots," a musical by Cyndi Lauper. He played the lead role of Charlie Price from May 26, 2017, through August 6, 2017. His run with the show was met with stellar reviews and extensive press coverage. I have not seen Kinky Boots, nor have I seen a bootleg version of Brendon's time in the show, but being a huge P!ATD fan, I can't help but think about what roles I'd love to see him play in some of my favorite Broadway shows. For these choices, I have taken into consideration his vocal skills, charisma, and sex appeal.
1: P.T. Barnum in "The Greatest Showman."The film, starring Hugh Jackman was hugely popular at the time of its release toward the tail end of 2017. Though Hugh Jackman has said that he'd happily don the top hat again in a sequel, a Broadway adaption would be the next logical step rather than another movie. In order to successfully transition from stage to screen, the hypothetical show would need the right star. Hugh Jackman is a terrific actor and talented singer, and although he has performed on Broadway before in his one man show and in the OBC of "The Boy From Oz," I feel that a great successor would be Brendon Urie. He already covers the films title song "This is the Greatest Show" for the "The Greatest Showman: Reimagined soundtrack," and knocked it out of the park, and fans of P!ATD will know just how well he can pull off a top hat and red jacket. This one is written in the stars!
2. The Phantom in "The Phantom of the Opera"The Phantom of the Opera is beloved by many and revered to be the greatest musical of all time; it's certainly the longest running! The title character of the Phantom is supposed to be dark, mysterious, and sexy despite his facial disfigurations; charming beyond belief and possessing top-notch vocal skills. This role screams Brendon Urie! The role calls for a tenor or a high baritone singer, and Mr. Urie would rock the hell out of the half mask. I'd kill to hear him belt out "It's over now, the music of the night!" To be fair, I do think that he'd be a great Raoul, too, but true "phans" know what a terrible character Raoul is, so I won't even go there.
3. John in "Miss Saigon"In the tragic musical about the fall of Vietnam, John is an ancillary character; as Chris's friend and comrade, he plays a key role in several scenes and opens the second act with the soulful "Bui Doi" number. I do not doubt in my mind that Urie could take the song to levels that no one has before.
4. Christian in "Moulin Rouge!"The film was wildly successful in 2001 when it was released. For years, a stage adaption was rumored to be in the works with the film's stars Ewan McGregor and Nicole Kidman, though nothing came of it for years. On July 10, 2018, a new version of the musical premiered in Boston at the Colonial Theatre. The cast included Aaron Tveit and Karen Olivo. With an opening date on Broadway set for July 26, 2019, the previews will begin on June 22 at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre. The jukebox musical has incorporated more modern songs into the new production, so if Brendon were to play romantic writer Christian, who's to say maybe a Panic! song couldn't be included as well?
5. Fiyero in "Wicked."After 16 years on the Great White Way, the musical is still going strong, with a film adaption allegedly in the works. The male lead, Fiyero has been played by rock singer and American Idol alum Adam Lambert; a rich bad boy with a soft side he keeps hidden from the world, the character goes from an airheaded playboy to a hero in his own right. Given his affinity for dancing and his ability to hit higher notes, I could easily see Beebo courting everyone's favorite witches.
6. Jude in "Across the Universe."The jukebox musical comprised of Beatles songs was released in 2007 to mixed reviews. A stage adaption has never surfaced, but, if it ever were to happen, I couldn't think of a better actor to step into Jim Sturgess' shoes than Brendon Urie. Although the role of Jude calls for a British accent (the character hails from Liverpool,) I'm sure with the right dialect coach, Urie could easily pull it off.
7. Buddy Holly in "Buddy - the Buddy Holly Musical."This musical uses the music of Buddy Holly to tell the story of the beloved musician's rise to fame and his tragic end. In the music video for "Ready to Go (Get Me Out of My Mind) one of the characters that Urie impersonates is a Buddy Holly-esque singer. He had the look and moves down pat.
8. Stacee Jax in "Rock of Ages"The fictitious rock god seen in the 80s rock jukebox musical has been played by the likes of Tom Cruise in the film adaption. He's portrayed as a washed-up alcoholic, blowing gigs and burying his sorrows in alcohol, drugs, and pretty girls. If the show were to ever reopen on Broadway, or get the "Live" treatment on TV, I think Brendon would be an interesting Stacee Jax, if for no other reason than to hear him belt out iconic rock anthems.
9. Melchior in "Spring Awakening."I am well aware that this one is a bit of a stretch as Melchior is supposed to be a teenager and Brendon Urie is 31, but he could pull off the character's broody personality and would kill songs like: "Totally Fucked," "All That's Known," "The Bitch of Living," and "Left Behind." If late 2000s Brendon Urie had done a musical, this is the one he'd have done.
10. Roger in "Rent."I don't know why I keep mentally casting Brendon in these broody roles, but we already know that he pulls off guyliner in a way that few can and his rendition of "One Song Glory" would literally explode all of the ovaries everywhere.
11. Hedwig in "Hedwig and the Angry Inch."If anyone could follow in John Cameron Mitchell and Neil Patrick Harris' immortal footsteps in the role of the transgendered rock star Hedwig, Brendon Urie is your man! He can wear the heck out of heels and he would slay "The Origin of Love."
12. Frank N. Furter in "The Rocky Horror Show."This one follows much the same line of reasoning as my previous suggestion. Frank N Furter is a pansexual alien from Transexual who likes to dress like a woman and create men in a lab, and he still has the time and energy to seduce both Brad AND Janet. This role has Brendon Urie written all over it. With his trademark dirty sense of humor, he could ad lib his way through the show, and it would be genius. I will be severely disappointed if this one never comes to be. So, there you have it, my dream roles for Brendon Urie to play either on Broadway or in some incarnation of said shows. I am in no way affiliated with Brendon or with Panic! at the Disco, I'm just a huge fan of the band, the man, and awesome musical theater. [post_title] => Top Broadway Roles That Brendon Urie Would Slay [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => top-broadway-roles-that-brendon-urie-would-slay [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-02-04 17:55:37 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-02-04 22:55:37 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=370661 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370557 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2019-01-31 10:39:45 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-01-31 15:39:45 [post_content] => From woeful Shakespearean sonnets to the wartime laments of ‘Les Mis’, theatre brings a plethora of dramatic monologues to the table. Kickstart your next audition by browsing this diverse selection of snippets from some of the most dynamic male characters onstage.
Here are 17 dramatic monologues for men:
1. “We can't strike.” - Marius from ‘Les Misérables’Spark a revolution with this one-minute monologue spoken by Victor Hugo’s Marius. Monologue Length: 1:00 - 1:15 “We can't strike. Why not? Because it's against the law to strike! The king has declared that everything is a crime. Writing is a crime. Two weeks ago, the police destroyed the Galaty, the worker's newspaper. They smashed the press. They burned over two thousand newspapers but that didn't satisfy the king. Three days ago at a student meeting, a peaceful meeting, soldiers broke it up and arrested two of my friends. Writing, talking, going to class, speaking out is a crime. Being poor is a crime. Being poor is the worst crime of all. And if you commit these crimes, you are condemned for life. Our government has no mercy, no pity, no forgiveness. And there's no work for us. And because there's no work, our children are starving. Tell me: why are we powerless to save the people we love? All of you know. Tell me - why? The king betrayed us. We were promised the vote, do we have it? Do we have the vote? Where is the republic our fathers died for? It's here my brothers. It lives here in our heads. But most of all, best of all, it's here in our hearts. In our hearts - WE ARE THE REPUBLIC!”
2. “You wouldn’t understand yet, son…” - Walter Lee Younger from ‘A Raisin In The Sun’From one of the most acclaimed plays to date comes Walter Lee Younger’s iconic monologue. Walter is an ambitious dreamer who wants a better life for his family, untouched by poverty. Monologue Length: 1:25 - 1:40 “You wouldn’t understand yet, son, but your daddy’s gonna make a transaction...a business transaction that’s going to change our lives...That’s how come one day when you ‘bout seventeen years old I’ll come home and I’ll be pretty tired, you know what I mean, after a day of conferences and secretaries getting things wrong the way they do...’cause an executive’s life is hell, man--And I’ll pull the car up on the driveway...just a plain black Chrysler, I think, with white walls--no--black tires. More elegant. Rich people don’t have to be flashy...though I’ll have to get something a little sportier for Ruth--maybe a Cadillac convertible to do her shopping in...And I’ll come up the steps to the house and the gardener will be clipping away at the hedges and he’ll say, “Good evening, Mr. Younger.” And I’ll say, “Hello, Jefferson, how are you this evening?” And I’ll go inside and Ruth will come downstairs and meet me at the door and we’ll kiss each other and she’ll take my are and we’ll go up to your room to see you sitting on the floor with the catalogues of all the great schools in America around you...All the great schools in the world! And--and I’ll say, all right son--it’s your seventeenth birthday, what is it you’ve decided?...just tell me where you want to go to school and you’ll go. Just tell me, what it is you want to be==Yessir! You just name it, son...and I hand you the world!”
3. “Well, as you guessed, Hope took over her father's business…” - Officer Lockstock from ‘Urinetown’We think “urine” luck with Officer Lockstock’s animated ‘Urinetown’ monologue. Monologue Length: 1:15 - 1:30 “Well, as you guessed, Hope took over her father's business, instituting a series of reforms which opened the public bathrooms to all the people, to pee for free whenever they liked, as much as they liked, for as long as they liked, with whomever they liked. The UGC was renamed, "The Bobby Strong Memorial Toilet Authority" and was operated as a public trust for the benefit of the people. Of course, it wasn't long before the water turned silty, brackish and then disappeared altogether. As cruel as Caldwell B. Cladwell was, his measures effectively regulated water consumption, sparing the town the same fate as the phantom Urinetown. Hope chose to ignore the warning signs, however, preferring to bask in the people's love for as long as it lasted. If there is a next time I'm sure we can. Well, that's our story. Hope eventually joined her father in a manner not quite so gentle. As for the people of this town? They did as best they could. But they were prepared for the world they inherited, weaned as they were on the legend born of their founding father's scare tactics. For when the water dried up, they recognized their town for the first time for what it really was. What it was always waiting to be."
4. “I’m just living in Berkeley.” - Benjamin Braddock from ‘The Graduate’Full of angst and self-confliction, the popular story of Benjamin Braddock follows his affair with the older Mrs. Robinson and his romance with her daughter, Elaine. Monologue Length: 0:45 - 1:00 “I’m just living in Berkeley. Having grown somewhat weary of family life, I’ve been meaning to stop by and pay my respects but have not been entirely certain how you felt about me after the incident with your mother which was certainly a serious mistake on my part but not serious enough I hope to permanently alter your feelings about me. I love you. I love you and I can’t help myself and I’m begging you to forgive me for what I did. I love you so much I’m terrified of seeing you every time I step outside the door. I feel helpless and hopeless and lost and miserable, please forget what I did please Elaine O God Elaine I love you please forget what I did? Please forget what I did Elaine, I love you.”
5. “All the world’s a stage…” - Jacques from ‘As You Like It’Perhaps one of the most memorable speeches in theatre history, Shakespeare’s “All the world’s a stage” stands the test of time. Bring your own unique voice to the role of Jacques with this monologue. Monologue Length: 1:15 - 1:30 “All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players: They have their exits and their entrances; And one man in his time plays many parts, His acts being seven ages. At first the infant, Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms. And then the whining school-boy, with his satchel, And shining morning face, creeping like snail Unwillingly to school. And then the lover, Sighing like furnace, with a woful ballad Made to his mistress' eyebrow. Then a soldier, Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard, Jealous in honour, sudden and quick in quarrel, Seeking the bubble reputation Even in the cannon's mouth. And then the justice, In fair round belly with good capon lin'd, With eyes severe, and beard of formal cut, Full of wise saws and modern instances; And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts Into the lean and slipper'd pantaloon, With spectacles on nose and pouch on side, His youthful hose well sav'd, a world too wide For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice, Turning again toward childish treble, pipes And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all, That ends this strange eventful history, Is second childishness and mere oblivion, Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.”
6. “A heavier task could not have been imposed…” - Egeon from ‘The Comedy Of Errors’In the opening of this play by The Bard, Egeon wears his heart on his sleeve and tells the audience of his tragic past. Monologue Length: Up to 2:50 “A heavier task could not have been imposed Than I to speak my griefs unspeakable: Yet, that the world may witness that my end Was wrought by nature, not by vile offence, I'll utter what my sorrows give me leave. In Syracusa was I born, and wed Unto a woman, happy but for me, And by me, had not our hap been bad. With her I lived in joy; our wealth increased By prosperous voyages I often made To Epidamnum; till my factor's death And the great care of goods at random left Drew me from kind embracements of my spouse: From whom my absence was not six months old Before herself, almost at fainting under The pleasing punishment that women bear, Had made provision for her following me And soon and safe arrived where I was.” [Full Monologue HERE]
7. “To be, or not to be--that is the question…” - Hamlet in ‘Hamlet’Hamlet’s infamous speech is sure to prove a worthwhile challenge for actors looking to take on a classic piece by Shakespeare. Monologue Length: 1:30 - 1:45 “To be, or not to be--that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune Or to take arms against a sea of troubles And by opposing end them. To die, to sleep-- No more--and by a sleep to say we end The heartache, and the thousand natural shocks That flesh is heir to. 'Tis a consummation Devoutly to be wished. To die, to sleep-- To sleep--perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub, For in that sleep of death what dreams may come When we have shuffled off this mortal coil, Must give us pause. There's the respect That makes calamity of so long life. For who would bear the whips and scorns of time, Th' oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely The pangs of despised love, the law's delay, The insolence of office, and the spurns That patient merit of th' unworthy takes, When he himself might his quietus make With a bare bodkin? Who would fardels bear, To grunt and sweat under a weary life, But that the dread of something after death, The undiscovered country, from whose bourn No traveller returns, puzzles the will, And makes us rather bear those ills we have Than fly to others that we know not of? Thus conscience does make cowards of us all, And thus the native hue of resolution Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought, And enterprise of great pitch and moment With this regard their currents turn awry And lose the name of action. -- Soft you now, The fair Ophelia! -- Nymph, in thy orisons Be all my sins remembered.”
8. “Is this a dagger which I see before me…” Macbeth in ‘Macbeth’Enter The Scottish Play - a story filled with intensity and anguish. Step into the shoes of this acclaimed role and slay your next dramatic monologue. Monologue Length: 1:30 - 1:45 "Is this a dagger which I see before me, The handle toward my hand? Come, let me clutch thee. I have thee not, and yet I see thee still. Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible To feeling as to sight? or art thou but A dagger of the mind, a false creation, Proceeding from the heat-oppressed brain? I see thee yet, in form as palpable As this which now I draw. Thou marshall'st me the way that I was going; And such an instrument I was to use. Mine eyes are made the fools o' the other senses, Or else worth all the rest; I see thee still, And on thy blade and dudgeon gouts of blood, Which was not so before. There's no such thing: It is the bloody business which informs Thus to mine eyes. Now o'er the one halfworld Nature seems dead, and wicked dreams abuse The curtain'd sleep; witchcraft celebrates Pale Hecate's offerings, and wither'd murder, Alarum'd by his sentinel, the wolf, Whose howl's his watch, thus with his stealthy pace. With Tarquin's ravishing strides, towards his design Moves like a ghost. Thou sure and firm-set earth, Hear not my steps, which way they walk, for fear Thy very stones prate of my whereabout, And take the present horror from the time, Which now suits with it. Whiles I threat, he lives: Words to the heat of deeds too cold breath gives. [A bell rings] I go, and it is done; the bell invites me. Hear it not, Duncan; for it is a knell That summons thee to heaven or to hell."
9. “But soft! What light through yonder window breaks?” - Romeo from ‘Romeo And Juliet’If it’s a declaration of love that strikes your fancy, choose this monologue from the one of the most romantic (and tragic) love stories of all time. Monologue Length: 1:00 - 1:10 "But soft! What light through yonder window breaks? It is the East, and Juliet is the sun! Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon, Who is already sick and pale with grief That thou her maid art far more fair than she. Be not her maid, since she is envious. Her vestal livery is but sick and green, And none but fools do wear it. Cast it off. It is my lady; O, it is my love! O that she knew she were! She speaks, yet she says nothing. What of that? Her eye discourses; I will answer it. I am too bold; 'tis not to me she speaks. Two of the fairest stars in all the heaven, Having some business, do entreat her eyes To twinkle in their spheres till they return. What if her eyes were there, they in her head? The brightness of her cheek would shame those stars As daylight doth a lamp; her eyes in heaven Would through the airy region stream so bright That birds would sing and think it were not night. See how she leans her cheek upon her hand! O that I were a glove upon that hand, That I might touch that cheek!"
10. “Under the cool shade of a sycamore…” - Boyet from ‘Love’s Labour’s Lost’This eloquent speech brings to life the role of Boyet, assistant to the princess in ‘Love’s Labour’s Lost’. Monologue Length: 1:20 - 1:35 "Under the cool shade of a sycamore I thought to close mine eyes some half an hour; When, lo! to interrupt my purposed rest, Toward that shade I might behold addrest The king and his companions: warily I stole into a neighbour thicket by, And overheard what you shall overhear, That, by and by, disguised they will be here. Their herald is a pretty knavish page, That well by heart hath conn'd his embassage: Action and accent did they teach him there; ‘Thus must thou speak,' and 'thus thy body bear:' And ever and anon they made a doubt Presence majestical would put him out, 'For,' quoth the king, 'an angel shalt thou see; Yet fear not thou, but speak audaciously.' The boy replied, 'An angel is not evil; I should have fear'd her had she been a devil.' With that, all laugh'd and clapp'd him on the shoulder, Making the bold wag by their praises bolder: One rubb'd his elbow thus, and fleer'd and swore A better speech was never spoke before; Another, with his finger and his thumb, Cried, 'Via! we will do't, come what will come;' The third he caper'd, and cried, 'All goes well;' The fourth turn'd on the toe, and down he fell. With that, they all did tumble on the ground, With such a zealous laughter, so profound, That in this spleen ridiculous appears, To cheque their folly, passion's solemn tears."
11. “Mankind marches on…” - Peter Trofimov from ‘The Cherry Orchard’Peter, an intellectual with an often pretentious nature, sheds light on his views with “Mankind marches on…” Monologue Length: 1:30 - 1:45 “Mankind marches on, going from strength to strength. All that now eludes us will one day be well within our grasp, but, as I say, we must work and we must do all we can for those who are trying to find the truth. Here in Russia very few people do work at present. The kind of Russian intellectuals I know, far and away the greater part of them anyway, aren’t looking for anything. They don’t do anything. They still don’t know the meaning of hard work. They call themselves an intelligensia, but they speak to their servants as inferiors and treat the peasants like animals. They don’t study properly, they never read anything serious, in fact they don’t do anything at all. Science is something they just talk about and they know precious little about art. Oh, they’re all very earnest. They all go round looking extremely solemn. They talk of nothing but weighty issues and they discuss abstract problems, while all the time everyone knows the workers are abominably fed and sleep without proper bedding, thirty or forty to a room--with bed-bugs everywhere, to say nothing of the stench, the damp, the moral degradation. And clearly all our fine talk is just meant to pull wool over our own eyes and other people’s too. Tell me, where are those children’s creches that there’s all this talk about? Where are the libraries? They’re just things people write novels about, we haven’t actually got any of them. What we have got it dirt, vulgarity and squalor. I loathe all those earnest faces. They scare me, and so do earnest conversations. Why can’t we keep quiet for a change?”
12. “Yes, I have tricks in my pocket, I have things up my sleeve.” - Tom Wingfield from ‘The Glass Menagerie’‘The Glass Menagerie’ opens with this monologue by Tom Wingfield, the narrator of the story. Monologue Length: Up to 2:00 “Yes, I have tricks in my pocket, I have things up my sleeve. But I am the opposite of a stage magician. He gives you illusion that has the appearance of truth. I give you truth in the pleasant disguise of illusion. To begin with, I turn bark time. I reverse it to that quaint period, the thirties, when the huge middle class of America was matriculating in a school for the blind. Their eyes had failed them or they had failed their eyes, and so they were having their fingers pressed forcibly down on the fiery Braille alphabet of a dissolving economy. In Spain there was revolution. Here there was only shouting and confusion. In Spain there was Guernica. Here there were disturbances of labour, sometimes pretty violent, in otherwise peaceful cities such as Chicago, Cleveland, Saint Louis. . . . This is the social background of the play. The play is memory. Being a memory play, it is dimly lighted, it is sentimental, it is not realistic. In memory everything seems to happen to music. That explains the fiddle in the wings. I am the narrator of the play, and also a character in it. The other characters are my mother Amanda, my sister Laura and a gentleman caller who appears in the final scenes. He is the most realistic character in the play, being an emissary from a world of reality that we were somehow set apart from. But since I have a poet's weakness for symbols, I am using this character also as a symbol; he is the long-delayed but always expected something that we live for. There is a fifth character in the play who doesn't appear except in this larger-than-life-size photograph over the mantel. This is our father who left us a long time ago.He was a telephone man who fell in love with long distances; he gave up his job with the telephone company and skipped the light fantastic out of town. . . .The last we heard of him was a picture postcard from Mazatlan, on the Pacific coast of Mexico, containing a message of two words - 'Hello - Good-bye!' and no address. I think the rest of the play will explain itself …”
13. “Try and calm yourself, and make your mind easy again…” - Torvald Helmer from ‘A Doll’s House’Torvald comforts his wife, Nora, in this snippet from Henrik Ibsen’s play, ‘A Doll’s House.’ Monologue Length: 1:20 - 1:45 “Try and calm yourself, and make your mind easy again, my frightened little singing-bird. Be at rest, and feel secure; I have broad wings to shelter you under. [Walks up and down by the door.] How warm and cosy our home is, Nora. Here is shelter for you; here I will protect you like a hunted dove that I have saved from a hawk's claws; I will bring peace to your poor beating heart. It will come, little by little, Nora, believe me. Tomorrow morning you will look upon it all quite differently; soon everything will be just as it was before. Very soon you won't need me to assure you that I have forgiven you; you will yourself feel the certainty that I have done so. Can you suppose I should ever think of such a thing as repudiating you, or even reproaching you? You have no idea what a true man's heart is like, Nora. There is something so indescribably sweet and satisfying, to a man, in the knowledge that he has forgiven his wife--forgiven her freely, and with all his heart. It seems as if that had made her, as it were, doubly his own; he has given her a new life, so to speak; and she has in a way become both wife and child to him. So you shall be for me after this, my little scared, helpless darling. Have no anxiety about anything, Nora; only be frank and open with me, and I will serve as will and conscience both to you--. What is this? Not gone to bed? Have you changed your things?”
14. “Oh, Miss Julie, a dog may lie on the couch of a Countess…” - Jean from ‘Miss Julie’Jean’s complex character first appears one way to Miss Julie, the play’s protagonist, before showing his true colors. Monologue Length: 1:15 - 1:25 “Oh, Miss Julie, a dog may lie on the couch of a Countess, a horse may be caressed by a lady's hand, but a servant—yes, yes, sometimes there is stuff enough in a man, whatever he be, to swing himself up in the world, but how often does that happen! But to return to the story, do you know what I did? I ran down to the mill dam and threw myself in with my clothes on—and was pulled out and got a thrashing. But the following Sunday when all the family went to visit my grandmother I contrived to stay at home; I scrubbed myself well, put on my best clothes, such as they were, and went to church so that I might see you. I saw you. Then I went home with my mind made up to put an end to myself. But I wanted to do it beautifully and without pain. Then I happened to remember that elderberry blossoms are poisonous. I knew where there was a big elderberry bush in full bloom and I stripped it of its riches and made a bed of it in the oat-bin. Have you ever noticed how smooth and glossy oats are? As soft as a woman's arm.—Well, I got in and let down the cover, fell asleep, and when I awoke I was very ill, but didn't die—as you see. What I wanted—I don't know. You were unattainable, but through the vision of you I was made to realize how hopeless it was to rise above the conditions of my birth.”
15. “I’m celebrating because I’ve got a friend who tells me all the things that ought to be told me.” - George Gibbs from ‘Our Town’Thornton Wilder’s beloved ‘Our Town’ chronicles the story of one town, Grover’s Corner, and the families that encompass the community. George Gibbs is an all-American boy navigating family, school, love for Emily, and growing up. Monologue Length: 0:45 - 1:00 “I’m celebrating because I’ve got a friend who tells me all the things that ought to be told me. I’m glad you spoke to me like you did. But you’ll see. I’m going to change. And Emily, I want to ask you a favor. Emily, if I go away to State Agricultural College next year, will you write me a letter? The day wouldn’t come when I wouldn’t want to know everything about our town. Y’ know, Emily, whenever I meet a farmer I ask him if he thinks it’s important to go to Agricultural School to be a good farmer. And some of them say it’s even a waste of time. And like you say, being gone all that time – in other places, and meeting other people. I guess new people probably aren’t any better than old ones. Emily – I feel that you’re as good a friend as I’ve got. I don’t need to go and meet the people in other towns. Emily, I’m going to make up my mind right now – I won’t go. I’ll tell Pa about it tonight.”
16. “Why do you got to get killed?” - Lennie Small from ‘Of Mice And Men’Known for his kind heart and loyalty, Lennie struggles with accepting that he has accidentally killed a puppy given to him by his friend, George. Monologue Length: 1:00 - 1:15 “Why do you got to get killed? You ain't so little as mice. I didn't bounce you so hard. (bends pup's head up and looks in its face) Now may be George ain't gonna let me tend no rabbits if he finds out you got killed. (Scoops a little hollow and lays puppy in it out of sight and covers it over with hay. He stares at the mound he has made.) I'll tell George I found it dead. (unburies pup and inspects it. Twists its ears and works his fingers in its fur, sorrowfully) But he'll know. George always knows. He'll say: "You done it. Don't try to put nothin' over on me." And he'll say: "Now just for that you don't get to tend no ‐‐‐ you know whats." (his anger rises. Addresses pup) Damn you. Why do you got to get killed? You ain't so little as mice. (picks up pup and hurls it from him, turns his back on it. Sits bent over his knees, moaning to himself.) Now he won't let me...Now he won't let me. You wasn't big enough. They tole me and tole me you wasn't. I didn't know you'd get killed so easy. Maybe George won't care. This here pup wasn't nothin' to George.”
17. “What can I do? I'm a patsy, what can a patsy do?” - Eddie Carbone from ‘A View From The Bridge’Though well intentioned, Eddie Carbone struggles to stay afloat in the real world as he lets himself slowly fall into a delusional state of mind in 'A View From The Bridge.' Monologue Length: 0:45 - 1:00 “What can I do? I'm a patsy, what can a patsy do? I worked like a dog twenty years so a punk could have her, so that's what I done. I mean, in the worst times, in the worst, when there wasn't a ship comin' in the harbor, I didn't stand around lookin' for relief—I hustled. When there was empty piers in Brooklyn, I went to Hoboken, Staten Island, the West Side, Jersey all over—because I made a promise. I took out of my own mouth to give to her. I took out of my wife's mouth. I walked hungry plenty days in this city! (It begins to break through.) And now I gotta sit in my own house and look at a son-of-a-bitch punk like that—which he came out of nowhere! I give him my house to sleep! I take the blankets off my bed for him, and he takes and puts his dirty filthy hands on her like a goddam thief!”
Have a great dramatic monologue to share with other thespians? Comment below…[post_title] => 17 Dramatic Monologues For Men [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 17-dramatic-monologues-for-men [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-01-31 11:09:11 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-01-31 16:09:11 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theatrenerds.com/?p=370557 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 370631 [post_author] => 391 [post_date] => 2019-01-30 11:57:40 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-01-30 16:57:40 [post_content] =>
How do you measure a year in the life? How about...love?FOX's "RENT: Live" finally premiered on January 27th after months of hype and anxious expectations from fans of the musical. With the hit-or-miss nature of live televised musicals, I pass no judgment until each premiere. That being said, as a longtime fan of "RENT," I found the "live" televised production to be somewhat of a mixed bag. On top of showing mostly pre-recorded footage due to a foot injury from Brennin Hunt (the cast's Roger), the entire broadcast was flawed, but not entirely hopeless. With contemporary musicals that have fanbases as large as "RENT," any post-Original Broadway Cast roster will be unfairly compared. The cast for this production is by no means untalented, but as a whole is unfortunately inconsistent. The roster seems better imagined than implemented. Some cast members such as Tinashe (as the club dancer Mimi Marquez) and Valentina (as the street percussionist and fashionista Angel Dumott Schunard) have commendable stage presence. They both look fierce in their respective solo numbers of “Out Tonight” and “Today 4 U, Tomorrow 4 Me.” Their vocals, on the other hand, are generally a poor fit for this show. While I don't see a future for Valentina in singing, Tinashe’s vocals are best heard in her signature R&B style and not rock musicals. Luckily, Tinashe's singing improves in the second act, as heard in “Without You” and the end of “Goodbye Love.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tUYLR6ACe60 The saviors of this cast are unsurprisingly the ones with more musical theater experience. Brandon Victor Dixon, who stole the show as Judas in last year’s “Jesus Christ Superstar Live” for NBC, gives an impressive, tenor-voiced Tom Collins. It is a welcome change from the usual baritones tackling the role. Dixon’s riffs and spectacularly sustained high notes make the heartbreaking “I’ll Cover You (Reprise)” only more thrilling, and the lower notes never sound forced or gravelly. Elsewhere, Vanessa Hudgens shines as the performance artist Maureen Johnson. Although best known for doing the “High School Musical” series, her stints playing Gigi on Broadway and Rizzo in “Grease: Live” three years ago have clearly paid off. Hudgens nails the vocal prowess needed for “Take Me or Leave Me,” as well as the over-the-top exuberance for “Over the Moon.” Another Disney Channel alum, Jordan Fisher, has just the right blend of charm and quirk to make him one of my favorite Mark Cohens that I have seen. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_Fctk9jSh8 Further adequate performances come from Kiersey Clemons as the lawyer Joanne Jefferson and R&B singer Mario as the yuppie landlord Benny Coffin III. Clemons immerses herself in the "classy, yet sassy" dry humor that makes her character so memorable. She does not always have solid high notes, but Clemons carries herself with dignity and comedic flair. These traits are especially present in the dialogue throughout "Tango: Maureen." Similarly, Mario gives a surprisingly convincing landlord and is careful not to overwhelm with too many vocal gymnastics. Finally, we have former X Factor contestant Brennin Hunt as Roger Davis. His performance as the singer-songwriter is a slow burn. In spite of his foot injury and pitchy vocals through the first act, he redeems himself in his heartrending rendition of “Your Eyes” towards the finale. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JjN0oYKGGRA Despite shortcomings from certain lead cast members, I have to give the ensemble their props. I love the background dancers' aggressive choreography in numbers such as "Rent" and sensual energy in "Tango: Maureen." Songs such as "Will I?," which is about fear of dying a so-called undignified death from AIDS, rarely leave a dry eye in the audience. The ensemble seriously delivered the emotion not just in "Will I?", but also in the musical's most famous number, the Act II opener "Seasons of Love." I always love a great featured soloist for this song, and who better to tackle those ending riffs than "Waitress" and "The Greatest Showman" star Keala Settle! Settle gracefully handles the soul and stamina needed for this song, and is a total gem in her brief appearances onstage. The ensemble’s closing rendition of "Seasons of Love" featured the Original Broadway Cast, and was a fitting, surreal finish to the broadcast. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6EObjUNvxu0 From a technical standpoint, the warehouse-like set for the live production is absolutely remarkable. Complete with brick walls and metal bars, it perfectly resembles the rough, Bohemian vibe of Manhattan's Alphabet City. I loved seeing the audience become involved towards the end of the broadcast. Crowd-surfing during "What You Own" and the full-house camera angles during "Finale B" helped keep momentum high. While the novelty of a live televised musical intrigues me, there are of course aspects that are bound to go wrong. Like NBC's "Hairspray Live!" from 2016, "RENT: Live" was not immune to issues with volume and sound mixing. Some performers' microphone feeds dropped out and made some scenes super distracting, particularly for Tinashe in "Out Tonight" and "La Vie Boheme." Another questionable aspect for me is which words get censored. I understand that network television is obviously going to change a few obscenities. That being said, why are some words and phrases such as "kink club," "goddamn," and "dildo" censored, but not "S&M," "masturbation," or "dyke"? It just does not add up. Without a doubt, this production has obstacles and imperfections. However, it does not diminish the cultural significance that Jonathan Larson’s work continues to have. Regardless of how even the purest "RENT" fans feel about the FOX broadcast, this presentation is not totally in vain. "RENT" is still relevant in the movement for LGBT+ rights and finding a cure for HIV/AIDS. Furthermore, it was a great choice of a show to do: contemporary, well-known, and containing the inspiring message of “no day but today.” NBC and FOX take serious risks by putting on live musicals, and I hope they continue to happen so that younger people see musical theatre’s broadening appeal. I hope that Larson's influence in telling realistic musical stories inspires future generations of thespians to discover their creative voices.