BWW Interviews: Broadway¬'s Little Tramp Rob McClure as Charlie Chaplin
The new Broadway musical Chaplin will star Rob McClure who originated the role in the 210 La Jolla production entitled “Limelight” where he won a Craig Noel Award for his portrayal of the little genius in baggy pants.
The new musical about the international star has music and lyrics by Christopher Curtis and book by three-time Tony Award winner Thomas Meehan (Annie, The Producers, and Hairspray) and Curtis. It will open on Broadway on Sept. 10 at the Barrymore Theatre following previews from Aug. 21.
Warren Carlyle (Finian's Rainbow, Hugh Jackman Back on Broadway) directs and choreographs the production. According to the producers of the biographical musical: "From the slums of London to the heights of Hollywood, Chaplin is the showbiz Broadway musical about the silent film legend the world couldn't stop talking about — Charlie Chaplin. The brand new 22-person musical reveals the man behind the legend, the undeniable genius that forever changed the way America went to the movies."
McClure is a two-time Barrymore Award winner who starred as Princeton/Rod in the Tony Award-winning musical Avenue Q. He made his Broadway debut in the 2002 Broadway revival of I'm Not Rappaport, working with Judd Hirsch and Ben Vereen Among his credits are Amadeus (Mozart at Walnut Street Theatre), Little Shop of Horrors (Seymour, The MUNY), The Game's Afoot (world premiere of Ken Ludwig's play at Cleveland Playhouse), The Producers (Carmen Ghia at Walnut Street Theatre), The Flea and the Professor (world premiere at Arden Theatre) and Johnny Baseball (world premiere at American Repertory Theater).
Joining the previously announced Rob McClure in the title role will be principals Jim Borstelmann as Alf Reeves, Jenn Colella as Hedda Hopper, Erin Mackey as Oona O'Neill, Michael McCormick as Sennett/ McGranery/Emcee, Christiane Noll as Hannah Chaplin, Zachary Unger as Young Charlie/Jackie and Wayne Alan Wilcox as Sydney Chaplin.
Sir Charles Spencer "Charlie" Chaplin became the most famous film star in the world before the end of World War I. By the age of 27, Chaplin was prroducing, writing,directing and even composing music and continued entertaining the world for over 75 years of the nearly 88 years of his life.
Martin Sieff, in a review of the book Chaplin: A Life, wrote: "Chaplin was not just 'big', he was gigantic. In 1915, he burst onto a war-torn world bringing it the gift of comedy, laughter and relief while it was tearing itself apart through World War I. Over the next 25 years, through the Great Depression and the rise of Adolf Hitler, he stayed on the job. ... It is doubtful any individual has ever given more entertainment, pleasure and relief to so many human beings when they needed it the most". George Bernard Shaw called Chaplin "the only genius to come out of the movie industry".
Pati Buehler: Just how exciting is it to play one of the most iconic and recognizable characters in American entertainment history?