Media Morsels 4.16.10

  • American Idiot
    Opening night is just around the corner! Here are a few bits to tide you over until the day of jubilee:
    • John Gallagher, Jr., was profiled by his hometown (Wilmington, DE) newspaper. There are some great bits of info, like the fact that Johnny recorded (for the American Idiot cast recording) “When It’s Time” using one of Billie Joe’s guitars, but there are also some spoilers, so read with caution.
    • Video clips, from MTV.com, of Green Day talking about bringing their album to the stage
    • Photos of audience members and director Michael Mayer signing the wall at the St James. (This is a fun little ritual brought over from the Berkeley production.)
    • The cast album will be released digitally on April 19 and in tangible form on April 20. Amazon has some samples you can listen to now.
    • Lea Michele took in American Idiot last week, supporting her former Spring Awakening co-stars John Gallagher, Jr., Brian Charles Johnson and Gerard Canonico. Also at the performance was fellow Spring Awakening alum (and Hamlet 2 star!) Phoebe Strole. Broadway.com has photos.
    • Check out these sneak peek production stills from the show, plus a flashback look at stills from the Berkeley production, all from Broadwayworld.com.
    • Playbill.com spoke to cast member Stark Sands about auditioning for the show (he replaces Matt Caplan, who played Tunny in Berkeley) and meeting and working with Green Day.
    • Metro Mix NY caught up with Tony Vincent, who plays St Jimmy. Vincent talks about Green Day’s long-held plans to bring this story to the stage.
    • Vanity Fair talks about American Idiot solidifying rock’s place on Broadway. I believe director Michael Mayer explained it best when he said that he and his contemporaries – and those younger than him – are really the first generation to grow up, wholly, on rock and roll, so it makes sense that the musicals they’re creating reflect that. (Hence American Idiot, Spring Awakening, Next to Normal…) Rock on!

  • Glee Scoop
    Tuesday was a beautiful day. Check out these Glee-related items from around the web.
    • Here’s a little treat from the LA Times in which Matthew Morrison says of Bruce Springsteen, “You’re The Boss! You can ask me to do anything you want!”
    • Lea Michele spoke to Broadway.com about adjusting to Glee fame and life in LA
    • Broadwayworld.com has tons of photos from the spring premiere party, photos which include a very tan looking Jonathan Groff, a very bohemian looking Lea Michele (I want her dress!) and a very beautiful look Idina Menzel (I want her husband!)
    • E! Online has tons of Glee spoilers – check it out at your own risk!

  • Go West [End], Young Man
    In related Glee news, Glee guest star and Spring Awakening alum Jonathan Groff will make his West End debut at the end of this summer in a revival of the play Deathtrap. This production will be directed by the brilliant Matthew Warchus. I’m not a betting lady, but with Groff starring and Warchus leading the creative team, I just might put money on this coming stateside next season.

  • TBS is on Team Coco
    The Wrap reported that TBS signed a deal with Conan O’Brien. The pompadour topped funny man will return to late night in a new, four-nights-a-week show that will air from 11-12 on the cable network. For a while it looked like Conan would be headed to Fox but apparently Fox didn’t move fast enough or offer as sweet a deal as TBS did. In the TBS deal, Coco will get to own his show and will be receiving his biggest paycheck to date. Look for the new late night show in November.

  • 2010 Pulitzer Prize Winners
    Next to Normal won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama! This makes Next to Normal only the eighth musical ever to win the Pulitzer and the first since Rent. Oodles and oodles of congratulations to Brian Yorkey and Tom Kitt (the latter of whom wrote the orchestrations for American Idiot!), who wrote the electrifying, eloquent and emotional dramatic musical. Other musicals that have won the Pulitzer: Rent, Sunday in the Park with George, A Chorus Line, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Fiorello!, South Pacific and Of Thee I Sing. (Some fun facts about these shows: How to Succeed was the last show I performed in while in high school – I was a pirate dancer; I’ve seen Rent, on Broadway and off, 11 times in a total of three different states and I’ve had drinks with the star of Fiorello!, Tom Bosley, aka Mr. Cunningham.) Playbill.com has Yorkey and Kitt’s reaction to the win while the NY Times has complete coverage of all this year’s Pulitzer honorees. PBS also spoke with Yorkey and Kitt; visit PBS.org to read or listen to their reactions to the honor.

  • Award Season Update
    In other award news, this week The Wall Street Journal reported that Fela! and American Idiot may be ineligible for Tony award nominations in the Original Score category. Tony rules state that more than 50% of a show’s score must be original – that is, written for the show – making both shows ineligible. (Fela! uses Fela Kuti’s music, while American Idiot uses Green Day’s.) Producers can petition the Tony nominating committee; Fela’s producers did this but were denied because of a statute of limitations. American Idiot’s producers have not made the same petition – yet. In both cases though, and this is just my speculation, both shows could be eligible in the Best Orchestrations category. Certainly for America Idiot, Tom Kitt greatly enhanced the show by adding lush orchestrations – and these were written specifically for the show. The committee will meet once more at the end of the month before nominations are announced on May 4. Stay tuned for all the details!

  • Hold the Salami
    A yummy morsel comes to us this week courtesy of the NY Times. The paper ran an article called, “Can the Jewish Deli Be Reformed?” In it, reported Julia Moskin explores the growing business of creating local, sustainable and otherwise eco-friendly delis that serve tasty deli favorites to rival grandma’s. Having recently made the switch to grass-fed, hormone and antibiotic free (and local, if available) meats myself, and loving a good corned beef sandwich, I found this to be particularly interesting. The article highlights a leader in the burgeoning industry, Saul’s Restaurant in Berkeley. (Naturally – Berkeley’s a hippie town and has been home base for Alice Waters for years.) But, it also mentions a new deli in Brooklyn, Mile End. I just might have to make the trek to the neighboring borough and check it out for myself!

  • Manchester, England, England
    Hair celebrated its official West End opening this week. To celebrate, Playbill.com shared these photos of the Tribe making their way overseas, Broadwayworld.com shared these opening night production stills and Broadway.com shared these opening night revelry photos.

  • Inception
    The summer blockbusters will start infiltrating multiplexes next month, but the one I’m most looking forward to is Inception, the new thriller from Christopher Nolan (Memento, The Dark Knight) starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Joseph Gordon-Levitt. This week, the LA Times ran an article exploring the themes of Inception. Take a read and let it whet your appetite for the July release.

  • Put the Can Down
    New York Magazine recently expressed their opposition to the pending sugary-beverage tax (on New York’s docket) on the grounds that it effectually taxed consumers twice. They point out, rightfully so, that our tax dollars already contribute to the farm subsidies that pay for the glut of corn that is the catalyst for the use of toxic [my word] high fructose corn syrup in almost all processed food. However, only people who drink such concoctions are taxed twice. The best way to combat this isn’t to oppose the beverage tax – it’s to oppose the farm subsidies; make it cost-prohibitive to buy these thoroughly unhealthy – and ultimately harmful – food options and make it cost-effective to buy fresh, local ingredients, or at least packaged food made with sugar, which is a healthier alternative to high fructose corn syrup.

  • Are You Ready for Some Football…on Broadway?
    A new play called Lombardi, based on famed Packers coach Vince Lombardi and namesake of the Super Bowl trophy, will come to Broadway’s Circle in the Square theatre this fall. Playbill.com is reporting that In the Heights director Thomas Kail will direct this iteration of the play that previously ran in Madison, Wisconsin. This production will star The Wonder Years dad, Dan Lauria.

  • Harry Potter Succeeds in Business
    Daniel Radcliffe, who made his Broadway debut last season in a warmly received revival of Equus (which, when it first debuted on Broadway, starred American Idiot and Spring Awakening producer, Tom Hulce,) will make his Broadway musical debut in a revival of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. This revival, which as of now does not have a home, will open on Broadway in 2011 under the direction and expert choreography of Rob Ashford.




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