Media Morsels 9.17.10
My dear readers,
I’m so sorry for the lack of Morsels last week. I was having technical difficulties. Please enjoy this week’s edition, with little bonuses left over from last week.
- American Idiot in the Media
The cast of American Idiot has been working overtime! Last Monday (on Labor Day), the talented bunch flew out to LA to tape a performance for the competition series America’s Got Talent, which aired on Wednesday. The Idiots were incredible, obviously. Playbill.com has the video of this cast that most definitely has talent. This was promptly followed a terrific performance on Monday Night Football. The Idiots performed with Green Day at Giants Stadium during the Ravens-Jets game. While ESPN didn’t show the entire performance, because apparently whatever Chris Berman has to say is much more important than thrilling musical performances, the full performance did air later that night on Jimmy Kimmel. To close out this week, the ladies of American Idiots (the Idiettes, if you will) visited Jimmy Fallon for an electric rendition of Letterbomb! And, none other than John Gallagher, Jr. and Michael Mayer were interviewed NY1 staple On Stage last week. The pair talked about crafting American Idiot. Watch the whole thing, but pay particular attention to Mayer at the beginning: I think he adores Johnny almost as much as I do!
While we had primaries in New York this week and the general election isn’t until November, the votes are in for Broadway Space’s Hottest Guy and Girl on Broadway and the voters (myself included) got it right. The 2010 winners are none other than John Gallagher, Jr. and Rebecca Naomi Jones! The two hotties make an incredible, compelling pair on stage and are excellent choices for this accolade. Congrats!
- Bloody Bloody Bits
Big Block of Cheese Day is coming to Broadway very soon - the first preview of Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson is this Monday, September 20! So, to prep for that, check out these photos of the cast meeting the press. And also be sure to watch this Broadway.com video of the meet-and-greet, and view their Bloody Bloody in-rehearsal photos. In addition, Playbill.com has several video clips you should check out: One is a highlights reel. The others are interview clips, one with writer and director Alex Timbers; one with composer Michael Friedman; one with cast member Lucas Near-Verbrugghe; and one with star Ben Walker, talking about how odd it is to be moving to Broadway. Populism, yea yea! (Bonus: A little piece of trivia, courtesy of the folks at BBAJ: Our current POTUS can thank Andrew Jackson for installing running water in the White House.)
And finally, to help close out Broadway week, like the Idiettes, the cast of Bloody Bloody stopped by Jimmy Fallon this week. Watch the video and then book your tickets for this must see of the 2010-2011 theatre season!
- Glee Scoop
Here’s a brand new promo video and behind the scenes photos from the New York Times to get your ready for season two of Glee. The hit show will return to Fox this Tuesday, September 21. And if that isn’t enough, check out this video from Entertainment Tonight of the Glee cast during their photo shoot for an upcoming all-Glee special edition People magazine. And if that isn’t enough, take a look at these red carpet photos of the Glee cast at the season two premiere party.
Want more of the sweet stylings of dreamboat Matthew Morrison? Well, you’re in luck. The triple-threat was hard at work on his solo album during Glee’s summer hiatus and hopes to release the completed album in February. Morrison says he’s collaborated with lots of great singers and songwriters and that the record even includes some songs that “you can shake your moneymaker to in the club”.
You’re never fully dressed without a smile, and while the lovely Lea Michele sometimes foregoes a smile for a smoldering smirk, she has made her way on to People’s annual Best Dressed list! This isn’t surprising, after some stunning red carpet moments. I’m particularly fond of the beautiful green number she wore to the SAG awards earlier this year and the stunning Oscar de la Renta gown she donned at this year’s Emmys. Way to go, Lea!
- Leap of Faith
As you may know, dear readers, I am incredibly fond of the incredibly talented Raul Esparza. Esparza is currently out in LA for the premiere of Leap of Faith, a musical adaptation of the Steve Martin movie. In this latest video sneak peek, Esparza treats us to a tune from the show. Brooke Shields and Bryce Ryness play along side Esparza in this musical, directed by Rob Ashford, that is currently playing at the Ahmanson Theatre in LA through October 17.
- City Ballet
Speaking of leaps, the New York City Ballet 2010-2011 season kicked off this week. (I was there on Thursday - review coming later this weekend.) To help welcome patrons back for the season, City Ballet had a whole slew of opening week festivities, including live music on the plaza and meet-and-greets with the dancers. Check out this article from the Wall Street Journal for the details.
Apparently, Benjamin Millepied is bringing his sexy to Club Monaco. The New York City Ballet principal dancer will be starring in a new ad campaign for the clothing company and City Ballet recently shared this video of the photo shoot with fans. Looking good, Benjamin!
- Kennedy Center Honors
It’s always award season, right? The class for the 33rd Annual Kennedy Center Honors is comprised of Merle Haggard, Jerry Herman, Bill T. Jones (the multiple Tony Award-winning choreographer of Spring Awakening and choreographer, director and writer of Fela!), Sir Paul McCartney (some guy from Liverpool) and Oprah. The dinner and gala will be held on December 5 and the gala part of that will be broadcast on CBS on December 28.
- New Group’s New Theatre
My Cousin Vinny fans pay attention: The always extraordinary Marisa Tomei will head back to the boards this spring, appearing in an off-Broadway New Group production of Wallace Shawn’s Marie and Bruce. That production is scheduled to run March 3-April 23, 2011. Ms. Tomei isn’t the only notable name nabbed by the New Group: Their first production, running December 13, 2010-February 19, 2011, is Blood from a Stone, and will feature Ethan Hawke, the original Mimi, Daphne Rubin-Vega and Freaks and Geeks alum Becky Ann Baker. And to close out the season, famed playwright Moises Kaufman will bring his new play, One-Arm, to New York, in association with his own theatre group, the Tectonic Theatre Company. (Kaufman and his company are most famous for conceiving The Laramie Project and, more recently, the Jane Fonda vehicle, 33 Variations.) You can visit thenewgroup.org for more information.
- Billy Back on Broadway?
Speaking of celebs treading the boards, EW.com is reporting that Billy Crudup (who was wonderfully sexy as Russell Hammond in Almost Famous and gave an expert performance in The Metal Children this past spring) will return to Broadway this February in a revival of Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia. Crudup originated the role of Septimus when the play opened on Broadway in 1995; this time, he’ll be playing the role originated by Victor Garber, Bernard Nightingale. In the same report, EW also says that Crudup will soon begin shooting the HBO movie Too Big to Fail, based on the book by Andrew Ross Sorkin. (This should come as no surprise, but I’d be more stoked if he worked on something with Aaron Sorkin.) Crudup will play Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner. I’ll keep you posted on any Arcadia updates, like where and exactly when it’ll be playing.
- Premiere Week
The fall season is heading into full swing. One of the most anticipated new shows, Boardwalk Empire, premieres this Sunday night on HBO. The series, about Atlantic City during prohibition, stars Steve Buscemi, Michael Pitt and Michael Shannon, and the pilot episode (the one airing on Sunday) was directed by Martin Scorsese. (E! Online is pretty excited for the show to air.) Also premiering this upcoming week: Glee (Tuesday), Modern Family (Wednesday) and Community, The Office and 30 Rock (Thursday). Next Sunday, the 26th, Bored to Death will return for a second season (such a stylized, non-pretentiously hip show shot in New York, which means it features lots of theatre rats in bit parts), and next Tuesday, the 28th, The Good Wife, with Julianna Margulies, Josh Charles and, in a recurring role – not just a guest role – Alan Cumming! Willkommen back, Alan!
- More Foo for You
A few weeks ago, I mentioned that Foo Fighters had headed back into the studio to record their seventh studio album. Well, the boys are hard at work, laying down vocals, layering instruments and mixing away. They are joined in the studio by old friends and long-time colleagues, including Krist Novoselic. Stay tuned for more details as they’re announced. In the meantime, visit foofighters.com for all things Foo.
- Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is
Do you love Broadway? Great! Do you want to produce a Broadway show? Well, now you may have a chance. After some false starts at finding funding the typical way for a Broadway revival of Godspell, producer Ken Davenport has announced that he is looking to make this revival crowd-funded. Now, instead of having to fork over $10,000 or as much as $100,000 for one producing unit, each unit will cost only $100 (though investors must purchase at least 10 units, costing $1,000). All producers’ names will appear on the website and posters adorning the theatre. I think this is an interesting idea, and one that I’ve seen work and have participated in in other media.
One of my favorite bands, The Spring Standards, was looking to record a full-length album. They knew they couldn’t do it alone so they turned to their incredibly fervent fan base and asked for donations. They created different levels of giving, so people on any budget could afford to give, with various incentives for each level. I love this trio and fully support their creativity so I was excited to have the chance to contribute to their record; as a result, my name now appears in the liner notes! But mostly I feel proud that I was able to help an unbelievably talented band put out the record they wanted to – and that I get to listen to it all the time! (By the way, The Spring Standards will be playing New York’s Rockwood Music Hall Stage 2 next Saturday – come join me and see for yourself what a rocking band they are!)
What do you think? Is there a band or show that you’re so totally in love with that you’d help finance their or its artistic efforts?
- Openings and Closings
This week we learned that the current Arthur Laurents-directed revival of West Side Story will close on January 2, 2011 after having played 27 previews and 748 regular performances. But, lest you worry that the Palace theatre (Story’s home) will feel all lonely and empty inside, I’m happy to report that Priscilla Queen of the Desert The Musical will take up residence in the theatre beginning February 28, 2011. This stage adaptation of the same-named film has been a hit across the pond and here in New York it will star Will Swenson! (Swenson was most recently in Hair here at the Hirschfeld and also in London.) Priscilla will enjoy its official opening night on March 20.
Also closing on January 2 is Promises, Promises. Current stars Kristen Chenoweth and Sean Hayes will stay with the show through the closing, rather than leaving in December, as originally planned.
- Sacha Baron Cohen Will Rock You
Chameleon comedian Sacha Baron Cohen is set to star as Freddie Mercury in an upcoming Queen biopic. (Can a film about a band be called a biopic?) According to the report from Empire Online, the film will “follow Queen’s formative years and chart the band’s rise to success, capped by their appearance at 1985’s Live Aid concert.” What do you think? Will Cohen be the champion, my friend?