John Waters, Beth Leavel, Marissa Perry and More Set for Symphonic Premiere of HAIRSPRAY: IN CONCERT!, Jan 2013
Marking the 25th anniversary of the John Waters' original film, Principal Pops Conductor Jack Everly brings together an all-star cast of Broadway, film and TV stars for the full symphonic production of the Broadway musical, Hairspray. Hairspray: In Concert! will premiere with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra tonight, Jan. 11-13, 2013, and with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Jan. 24-27, 2013.
Hairspray: In Concert! stars noted filmmaker, writer and artist John Waters (Narrator), who created and directed Hairspray, the popular cult comedy hit film in 1988, which was adapted into an Tony Award-winning Broadway musical in 2002; Micky Dolenz (Wilbur Turnblad), best known as the drummer and lead vocalist of the 1960s made-for-television band The Monkees; Broadway star Beth Leavel (Velma Von Tussle), who earned a Tony Award for The Drowsy Chaperone and a nomination for her role in Baby, It's You; and Paul Vogt (Edna Turnblad), who played the role of Edna in Hairspray on Broadway and whose television and film credits include MADtv, Grey's Anatomy, Glee and The Rerun Show.
Also starring in Hairspray: In Concert! are Nick Adams (Link Larkin), who recently appeared on Broadway in A Chorus Line and Chicago and was the winner of two Broadway.com Audience Choice Awards for his role in Priscilla, Queen of the Desert; Marissa Perry (Tracy Turnblad), currently of Broadway's Sister Act and previously the role of Tracy in Hairspray on Broadway; NaTasha Yvette Williams (Motormouth Maybelle), who starred on Broadway in Gershwins' Porgy and Bess; Alix Korey (Prudy Pingleton), whose Broadway credits include Hello, Dolly! and The Pirates of Penzance; Julie Kavanagh (Penny Pingleton), who recently appeared in the national tour of La Cage Aux Folles; Rhiannon Hansen (Amber Von Tussle), a finalist for MTV's reality series, Legally Blonde The Musical: The Search for Elle Woods; Bret Shuford (Corny Collins); whose Broadway credits include Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Disney's Beauty and the Beast and The Little Mermaid; Marcus Terell (Seaweed J. Stubbs) from FOX's American Idol (finalist, seasons three and four) and from NBC's America's Got Talent (semi-finalist, season three); John Phillips (Mr. Pinky), a popular actor with extensive credits within central Indiana's theater community; and the Divas of Song (Dynamites), led by Natalie Perkins, who appeared in the national Broadway tour of Hairspray.
"If there's ever a time to do a concert production of this classic story and musical, it's now," said Jack Everly, who serves as Principal Pops Conductor for the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. "All of the stars are aligned: We have the original filmmaker John Waters, a superior cast of actors, singers and Broadway stars, many of whom have performed in previous Hairspray productions, the epitome of 1960s pop culture with musician Micky Dolenz, and two major orchestras collaborating in this significant full symphonic production," he added.
Set in the 1960s in his hometown of Baltimore, John Waters wrote Hairspray, the story of the misadventures of "pleasantly plump" Tracy Turnblad, whose aspirations of fame lead her to find celebrity on a locally-produced dance program. Her dreams for stardom are quickly traded for more important dreams: integrating the show in the racially divided city of Baltimore. The Broadway adaptation of the film won eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical in 2003.
The ISO's performance of Hairspray: In Concert! will take place tonight, Jan. 11 and 12 at its home in the historic Hilbert Circle Theatre in downtown Indianapolis and in the Palladium at the Center for the Performing Arts in Carmel, Ind., on Jan. 13. The BSO's performance of Hairspray: In Concert! will take place at the Music Center at Strathmore on Jan. 24 and at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, Jan. 25-27. For information on tickets and show times in Indianapolis, contact the ISO at (317) 639-4300 or www.IndianapolisSymphony.org, and in Baltimore, contact the BSO at (410) 783-8000 or www.bsomusic.org.
Hairspray: In Concert! is produced by Ty Johnson, Senior Pops Producer at the ISO, and Matthew Spivey, Vice President of Artistic Operations at the BSO, and is directed by David Levy. Staging and choreography is directed by Jennifer Ladner and costuming is by Clare Henkel.
Jack Everly has served as Principal Pops Conductor of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra since 2002 and also serves in similar posts with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Naples Philharmonic Orchestra and the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa, and Music Director of the National Memorial Day Concert and A Capitol Fourth on PBS, which has a viewership of millions and a live audience of more than half a million on the lawn of our nation's Capitol. This season, he returns to The Cleveland Orchestra and appears as guest conductor in Pittsburgh, Phoenix, Fort Worth, Detroit, Edmonton, Toronto, Carnegie Hall and many others. This past summer marked Jack Everly's Hollywood Bowl debut. Everly is the Music Director of Duke Energy Yuletide Celebration, now a 26-year tradition. Originally appointed by Mikhail Baryshnikov, Mr. Everly was conductor of the American Ballet Theatre for 14 years, where he served as Music Director. In addition to his ABT tenure, he has teamed with Marvin Hamlisch in Broadway shows that Mr. Hamlisch scored, including The Goodbye Girl, They're Playing Our Song and A Chorus Line. He conducted Carol Channing hundreds of times in Hello, Dolly! in two separate Broadway productions. In addition to conducting the Memorial Day and Capital Fourth Concerts, Jack Everly has appeared on In Performance at the White House on PBS and conducted the songs for the Disney soundtrack, The Hunchback of Notre Dame. In 1998, Jack Everly created the Symphonic Pops Consortium, serving as Music Director. The Consortium, based in Indianapolis, produces a new theatrical pops program each season. In the past 12 years, more than 300 performances of SPC programs have taken place across the U.S. and Canada.
John Waters has written and directed sixteen movies including Pink Flamingos, Polyester, Hairspray, Cry Baby, Serial Mom and A Dirty Shame. He is a photographer whose work has been shown in galleries all over the world and the author of six books: Shock Value, Crackpot, Pink Flamingos and Other Trash, Hairspray, Female Trouble and Multiple Maniacs, and Art: A Sex Book (co-written with Bruce Hainley). His most recent book, Role Models, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux in May, 2010 appeared on best-seller lists for the New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle and the Boston Globe. Waters is a member of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and is on The Wexner Center International Arts Advisory Council. Additionally, he is a past member of the boards of The Andy Warhol Foundation and Printed Matter and was selected as a juror for the 2011 Venice Biennale.
Micky Dolenz was born in Los Angeles on March 8, 1945. He first established himself as a performer at age 10 when, under the stage name of "Micky Braddock," he starred in his first TV series, Circus Boy, which aired from 1956 to 1958. In autumn 1965, Micky was one of 400 applicants who responded to a trade ad announcing auditions for a new TV show about a rock band. Micky auditioned for The Monkees TV show playing Chuck Berry's "Johnny B. Goode" and was chosen along with three other actors - Davy Jones, Michael Nesmith, and Peter Tork. The Monkees' debut single, "Last Train to Clarksville," featuring Micky on lead vocals, hit the charts September 10, 1966, and rocketed to number one. Two days later, the television show debuted on NBC to great success. The TV ratings remained high for two seasons and Micky and the band starred in their own feature film, Head, a 1968 psychedelic romp co-written by a young Jack Nicholson. The movie is now considered a cult classic. The show also won an Emmy for Best Comedy Series. Ultimately, The Monkees achieved their greatest success as recording artists selling in excess of 65 million units and achieving worldwide success.
In 1977, Micky flew to London to star in Harry Nilsson's West End Musical, The Point! He planned to stay three months but remained for 12 years writing, producing and directing films, TV and theater, including a stage version of Alan Parker's Bugsy Malone, starring a very young Catherine Zeta Jones. In 1986, MTV broadcast episodes of The Monkees show and exposed a whole new generation to "Monkeemania." Micky, Peter and Davy Jones subsequently reunited for a 1986 summer tour that was so successful it sparked the reissue of all The Monkees' classic LPs.
When Micky returned to the United States, he went out on the road with the National Touring Company of Grease. Micky enjoyed musical theater so much that he accepted the lead role in a Canadian production of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum in 1993, and in 2004 he starred in Elton John/Tim Rice's Broadway musical Aida, as "Zoser." He also appeared in the revival of Pippin' at the Goodspeed Opera House as well as the national tour.
Micky began 2010 with a run in the London West End production of Hairspray; playing the character of "Wilbur Turnblad." He also followed this run up with a U.K.-national tour of the play. Micky began the summer of 2012 as the special guest on this year's Happy Together tour.
Beth Leavel received Tony, Drama Desk, NY Outer Critics Circle and L.A. Drama Critics Awards for her performance as the title character in The Drowsy Chaperone. Beth also received a Tony, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle nomination for her role as Florence Greenberg in Baby It's You. She recently performed the roles of Sally Adams in Call Me Madam at Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma, M'Lynn in Steel Magnolias at the North Carolina Theatre and the much put upon maid, Berthe, in Boeing-Boeing at the Paper Mill Playhouse. Other Broadway roles include Emily in Elf, Donna in Mamma Mia!, Frau Blucher in Young Frankenstein, Dorothy Brock in the revival of 42nd Street, Tess in the original company of Crazy For You, Mrs. Bixby in The Civil War, Ellie in Hal Prince's Showboat and Anytime Annie (her Broadway debut) in 42nd Street. Ms. Leavel was also seen in New York City Center Encores! production of No, No, Nanette as Lucille. Numerous Off-Broadway, regional theatre, commercials, and TV, including the final episode of ER.
Paul Vogt made his Broadway debut as Edna in Hairspray and replaced Harvey Fierstein in the Las Vegas production. He can be seen in Garry Marshall's Valentine's Day. Audiences know Paul from MADtv. He was one of the stars of NBC's The Rerun Show, in which he played Mrs. Edna Garrett from The Facts of Life. Paul's voice work can be heard in the film Igor and the animated short Kung Fu Panda: Secrets of the Masters. Paul also has the distinction of being the only male to play "Ursula" in The Little Mermaid (at the MUNY). Other regional credits: Laurel and Hardy (Falcon Theater-West Coast premiere), Idaho (Forestburgh Playhouse-world premiere), A Funny Thing...Forum (Paper Mill), Hairspray (NSMT, Sacramento Music Circus, The MUNY, PCLO, and TUTs), Disney's Aladdin (Tuacahn), Minsky's (Ahmanson-world premiere). Select films include: Blonde Ambition, Princess Diaries 2, Good Boy, Lilo and Stitch 2, Raising Helen. TV: Pack of Wolves, Glee, Grey's Anatomy, Johnny and the Sprites, Hannah Montana, Arrested Development, Reno 911, Maximum Bob, and Chicago Hope.
Nick Adams has been onstage from the age of nine and began his professional career at 16. He earned a BFA in Musical Theatre with a minor in Dance at the prestigious Boston Conservatory of Music. Since his graduation in 2005, he has appeared with the international tour of Chicago the Musical and the Broadway company of Chicago. Adams moved on to become part of the original Broadway cast of The Pirate Queen, where his voice can be heard on the cast recording with Sony Records. In 2007, Adams starred as Larry, alongside co-star Mario Lopez, in the hit Broadway revival of A Chorus Line. Recent Broadway credits include The Pirate Queen, Guys and Dolls, La Cage Aux Folles and Priscilla Queen of the Desert. Adams' television appearances include Dancing With The Stars, The View, The Today Show and The Early Show.
Alix Korey made her Broadway debut as Minnie Fay in the 1978 revival of Hello, Dolly!, starring Carol Channing. She later appeared in The Pirates of Penzance and Show Boat, All Shook Up and 45 Seconds From Broadway. Her Off-Broadway performances include Listen to My Heart and The Wild Party, for which she received two Drama Desk nominations. Her recordings include Gifts of Love and Songs You Might Have Missed.
Marissa Perry made her Broadway debut as Tracy Turnblad in Hairspray and was recently seen as the shortest nun on Broadway as part of the elite group of fierce, high belting women of the original cast of Sister Act. Marissa is an IRNE Award and JEFF Award-nominated actress. Other credits include Kit in David Zipple's Princesses (World Premiere and Pre-Broadway), Maria in My Big, Gay, Italian Wedding (Off Broadway), Suzy in The Marvelous Wonderettes, Annabel Glick in Lucky Stiff, Toby in Romy and Michele's High School Reunion and Trudy in Empire.
NaTasha Yvette Williams played Sofia in The Color Purple and appeared in Dessa Rose at Lincoln Center. She was Mammy in Trevor Nunn's West End production of Gone With the Wind in London. National Tours include The Drowsy Chaperone (Trix the Aviatrix), All Shook Up (Sylvia), Seussical the Musical (Sour Kangaroo), Cinderella (Grace), Parade (Featured), The Goodbye Girl (Mrs. Crosby) and Mahalia in Mahalia. NaTasha's regional credits include Mahalia in Mahalia at the Cleveland Playhouse, Crowns at Arkansas Rep, Abyssinia at the Goodspeed and North Shore Music Theater and Ain't Misbehavin' at Papermill Playhouse.
Rhiannon Hansen is one of the finalists of MTV's Legally Blonde The Musical: The Search for Elle Woods, a reality series searching for the next actress for the lead role in Legally Blonde: The Musical. She is currently a student at The American Musical and Dramatic Academy in Los Angeles.
Julie Kavanagh is a St. Louis native and a graduate of the University of Cincinnati-College Conservatory of Music (CCM) with a BFA in Musical Theatre. Her performances include the national tour of La Cage Aux Folles and regional productions of Avenue Q (Kate Monster/Lucy, Theatre Aspen), 42nd Street (Peggy Sawyer, Merry Go Round Playhouse), Chicago (Go-To-Hell Kitty, Northern Stage), Joseph...Dreamcoat (Wife, Maltz Jupiter Theatre), A Chorus Line (Lois, Stages St. Louis), Footloose, High School Musical, The Music Man and Les Miserables (MUNY).
John Phillips has been a part of the Indianapolis theater community since 1980 and has worked at most of the theaters in central Indiana including The Phoenix, the Edyvean, the Civic, Buck Creek Players, Theatre on the Square, Madame Walker, American Cabaret Theatre and Footlite Musicals. He is a 14-time Encore Award Winner and was named "Best Actor In A Musical" by the Indianapolis Star for his portrayal of Ko-Ko in The Mikado at the Edyvean.
Bret Shuford made his Broadway debut in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and has performed for Disney on Broadway in Beauty And The Beast, and in The Little Mermaid. Other credits include The Radio City Christmas Spectacular, Actorsfund Benefit performances of A Wonderful Life, Best Little Whorehouse In Texas, On The Twentieth Century, the National tour of Lincoln Center's South Pacific, and Off-Broadway was recently seen in Make Mine Manhattan. Regionally Bret has performed with the Adirondack Theatre Festival, Papermill Playhouse, Music Theatre Of Wichita, Theatre Under The Stars, North Carolina Theatre, Casa Manana, Maine State Music Theatre, Maltz Jupiter Theatre, and Rio in Las Vegas. Film credits include the upcoming Scorcese's The Wolf Of Wall Street, Uncle Melvin's Apartment and Bedfellows.
Marcus Terrell's television credits include America's Got Talent (Top 40 semi-finalist), two seasons of American Idol (finalist), Making the Band 4 (finalist) and PopStars (semi-finalist). Regional theater credits include Hairspray (Seaweed J. Stubbs and Thad), Joseph ... Dreamcoat, Cabaret, Welcome to Broadway and Totally New York.
The Divas of Song - Natalie Perkins received her BME from Indiana University's School of Music, where she co-founded and directed IU's first women's a cappella group. Under her direction, Ladies First recorded two CD's. She has received numerous awards for her a cappella arrangements. She has been seen in Aida as "Aida," Ragtime as "Sarah," the regional premiere of The Wedding Singer (Gateway Playhouse) as "Crystal/Tina Turner" and played major roles in shows such as Hair and Big River. She completed national and international tours with both Hairspray (Dynamite) and Rent (Mrs. J/Seasons of Love soloist). Nikki Stephenson has played Off-Broadway in Black Nativity, which received a Drama Desk Nomination. She has appeared in both the national tours of Fame-The Musical (Ms. Sherman) and Hairspray (Dynamite/us Motormouth). Regionally, she has been seen in Dreamgirls, Caroline, Or Change, Swing, Beehive, Angels In America, and Antigone. Recently, Nikki played Ronette in Little Shop Of Horrors. Melissa vanpelt made her Broadway debut as "Inez" in the Tony award-winning musical Hairspray with George Wendt, Harvey Fierstein and Marissa Jaret Winokur. Other theatre credits include the national tour of Hairspray (Inez/Dynamites), Ain't Misbehavin', Once On This Island, Fame, Dreamgirls and Purlie for which she was nominated for an Ostrander award for best leading actress in a musical.
Photo Credit: Walter McBride / Retna Ltd.