Liz Callaway, Mary Testa and More Set for BROADWAY CLOSE UP Series

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Liz Callaway, Mary Testa and More Set for BROADWAY CLOSE UP Series

For 12 years, Merkin Concert Hall's Broadway Close Up series has been taking audiences behind the scenes of classic musicals old and new with eye-opening interviews and inspiring performances. The annual Bound for Broadway show hosted by Liz Callaway gives theater lovers sneak peeks at some of the best new shows in production. This season's line-up includes: 

Mon, 9/24/12, 7:30 pm

Bound for Broadway XII

Liz Callaway, host

For more than a decade, Bound for Broadway has been letting audiences know about some of the best new shows currently in development. In past years we’ve given you sneak peeks at shows like Next to Normal, Avenue Q and The Drowsy Chaperone. This year Liz will interview the writers of five new shows, who will share selections from their work. Shows include two with unlikely subject matter: Watt?! a new musical about James Watt, U.S. Secretary of the Interior under Ronald Reagan, and The Dogs of Pripyat about dogs left behind after the Chernobyl meltdown. Also, in the program: The Great American Mousical, based on a book by Julie Andrews and her daughter, Emma Walton Hamilon; a 2-actor murder mystery performed by two pianists, Murder For Two; last but not least, Rocket Science based on a film about a high school student with a stutter that joins the debate team.

Mon, 10/22/12, 7:30 pm

And I Am Telling You: Henry Krieger

How did a nice Jewish boy come to write the most iconic “Motown” musical of all-time? Henry Krieger, composer of Dreamgirls and the cult-classic Side Show will share anecdotes and stories about working with director Michael Bennett and writing material for iconic performers like Jennifer Holiday and Alice Ripley. Music Director Andy Einhorn will lead a star-studded cast of performers on such songs as “And I Am Telling You,” “I Would Never Leave You” and “I Am Changing”. Plus, you’ll get a look at Krieger’s new show, being written especially for one of Broadway’s legendary leading ladies. With Sean Hartley, host. Featuring Aaron Lazar (Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, The Light in the Piazza), Elisabeth Withers-Mendes (The Color Purple, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof), Mary Testa (Tony nominee for On the Town and 42nd Street) and Curt Hansen (Next to Normal, Hairspray).

Monday, 11/5/12, 7:30 pm

Art Isn’t Easy: Andre Bishop & Ira Weiztman

Andre Bishop & Ira Weitzman, through their stewardship of Playwrights Horizons in the 1980’s and Lincoln Center Theater beginning in the 1990’s, have had an incalculable impact on musical theater as it is today. You’ll gain insight into the role of a producer in the non-profit theater and learn firsthand how a musical goes from the page to the stage by exploring such shows as Sunday in the Park With George, Once On This Island and Light In the Piazza, as well as Lincoln Center’s highly successful revivals of Carousel and South Pacific. Featuring Michael Winther (Mamma Mia!) and others TBA.

Monday, 12/3/12, 7:30 pm

Lyricists Who Changed the World…of Musical Theater

Ira, Oscar, Yip & Larry

Ira Gershwin, Oscar Hammerstein, E.Y. “Yip” Harburg and Lorenz Hart were born in New York City within two years of each other at the turning of the 20th century. Their careers and lives repeatedly intersected as each became one of America’s greatest lyricists. Their careers tell the story of the American musical, as it evolved from operetta to musical comedy to the serious musical play. Co-hosts Sean Hartley and Ted Chapin, Executive Director of the Rodgers and Hammerstein Organization, and Musical Director David Loud (Ragtime, Porgy And Bess) will lead a brilliant cast of some of Broadway’s best singers, including Matthew Scott (Jersey Boys, Sondheim on Sondheim) and Liz Callaway (Cats, Tony nominee for Baby).

SPECIAL EVENT:

Thursday, 10/11/12 at 7:30

New Music from The Johnny Mercer Foundation Songwriters Project

Celebrating the first seven years of the Johnny Mercer Foundation’s Songwriters Project at Northwestern University, this special evening will feature faculty members, Broadway composers and Tony nominees Craig Carnelia (Is There Life After High School?) and Andrew Lippa (The Addams Family), and Grammy-winning singer and songwriter Lari White. They will introduce alumni writers from the program, including Joe Kinosian & Kellen Blair, Chris Diamond and Michael Kooman, Phoebe Kreutz, Peter Lerman, Alina Smith and Benjamin Scheuer.

Photo Credit: Walter McBride / Retna Ltd.

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