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Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!

A long-standing opening night tradition on the Great White Way, the fabled Gypsy Robe is bestowed upon a veteran Broadway chorus member for each opening production. In what has now become a theatrical ritual, originating on Broadway 60 years ago, the latest receipient was Hugh Jackman, BACK ON BROADWAY cast member Kearran Giovanni at the Broadhurst Theatre in New York City.

At the song and dance ceremony, cast members who were making their Broadway debuts were acknowledged at the center of the stage, and then Kobak proceeded to circle the room in the robe in celebration with the entire cast.

The Gypsy Robe began in 1950, when Bill Bradley, in the chorus of GENTLEMEN PREFER BLONDES, borrowed a dressing gown from Chorus member Florence Baum and sent it to a friend in CALL ME MADAM on opening night Oct 12, 1950 saying it was worn by all the Ziegfeld beauties and would "bless" the show. A cabbage rose from Ethel Merman's gown was added and the robe was passed along to next Broadway musical on opening night. The tradition evolved so that the robe is now presented to the "gypsy" who has performed the most Broadway musicals on a chorus contract. Along the way, the robe is decorated, painted, patched, stitched, and signed by everyone in the show, becoming a fanciful patchwork for an entire Broadway season.

Tony Award-winner Hugh Jackman has returned to the New York stage for a 10-week engagement in Hugh Jackman, Back on Broadway at the Broadhurst Theatre (235 West 44th Street). The production runs through January 1, 2012. Accompanied by an 18-piece orchestra, he performs a personal selection of his favorite musical numbers that reflect on the stage and film star's remarkable life and career, from The Boy from Oz to Hollywood.

Photo Credit: Walter McBride

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Hugh Jackman

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Grasan Kingsberry (Recipient-ON A CLEAR DAY) with David Westphal (Actors Equity)

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Grasan Kingsberry (Recipient-ON A CLEAR DAY)

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Tad Wilson (Recipient-BONNIE & CLYDE), Grasan Kingsberry (Recipient-ON A CLEAR DAY) with Kendal Hartse, Patrick O'Neill & Christianne Tisdale

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Grasan Kingsberry (Recipient-ON A CLEAR DAY) with Kendal Hartse, Patrick O'Neill & Christianne Tisdale attending the 'Hugh Jackman - Back On Broadway' Post Opening Night Gypsy Robe Ceremony for recipient Kearran Giovanni

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Hilary Michael Thompson, Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient), Lara Seibert, Anne Otto

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Hilary Michael Thompson, Anne Otto, Robin Campbell & Emily Tyra

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Grasan Kingsberry (Recipient-ON A CLEAR DAY) with Hugh Jackman

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Hilary Michael Thompson, Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient), Lara Seibert, Anne Otto, Robin Campbell

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Hilary Michael Thompson, Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient), Lara Seibert

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Hilary Michael Thompson, Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient), Lara Seibert, Anne Otto, Robin Campbell

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Hilary Michael Thompson, Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient), Lara Seibert

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Hilary Michael Thompson, Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient), Lara Seibert

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient) with Grasan Kingsberry (Recipient-ON A CLEAR DAY) & David Westphal (Actors Equity)

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient) with David Westphal

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient) with Grasan Kingsberry (Recipient-ON A CLEAR DAY) & David Westphal

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient)

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient) with Hilary Michael Thompson, Anne Otto, Robin Campbell & Emily Tyra

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient) & Hugh Jackman

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient) with Hugh Jackman, Bill Noble & Tad Wilson ('Bonnie & Clyde' Recepient)

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient) with Hugh Jackman, Bill Noble & Tad Wilson ('Bonnie & Clyde' Recepient)

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Hugh Jackman attending the 'Hugh Jackman - Back On Broadway' Post Opening Night Gypsy Robe Ceremony for recipient Kearran Giovanni

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient) attending the 'Hugh Jackman - Back On Broadway' Post Opening Night Gypsy Robe Ceremony for recipient Kearran Giovanni

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient)

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient)

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient) with Hugh Jackman & Company

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient) & Company

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient)

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient)

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Hugh Jackman & Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient)

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient) with Emily Tyra, Hugh Jackman, Hilary Michael Thompson, Robin Campbell & Lara Seibert

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient)

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!
Anne Otto, Emily Tyra, Hugh Jackman, Kearran Giovanni (Gypsy Robe Recipient), Hilary Michael Thompson, Robin Campbell & Lara Seibert

Photo Coverage: Inside HUGH JACKMAN, BACK ON BROADWAY's Gypsy Robe Ceremony!

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Walter McBride As a 14 year old youth, Walter was transfixed by his first Broadway Show, the original production of 'GREASE'. His Journey to celebrity photojournalism began that fateful night. Meeting, photographing and getting to know the cast inspired him to spend his professional life doing what he loved. Walter moved to Manhattan and for a leading role as a Photographer & Photo Researcher. Currently headlining in New Jersey with his partner Richard and family members Dali (Jack Russell) & Gala (Schnoodle). Recently he made his Broadway debut sharing the stage with Hugh Jackman in 'Hugh Jackman on Broadway' as well as receiving the Actors' Equity Association Gypsy Spirit Award. Walter McBride Photography is syndicated worldwide by Corbis/AP.