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InDepth InterView Exclusive: Bernadette Peters Talks COMING UP ROSES, SMASH Season Two, Sondheim & MoreInDepth InterView Exclusive: Bernadette Peters Talks COMING UP ROSES, SMASH Season Two, Sondheim & More
by Pat Cerasaro - November 6, 2012

Today BroadwayWorld is particularly proud to present an exceptionally exciting exclusive byway of this career-spanning chat with two-time Tony Award-winning Broadway legend Bernadette Peters. In this all-encompassing conversation we discuss many aspects of her storied career, with a special focus on her upcoming feature film, COMING UP ROSES, which opens this Friday in NYC - a gritty and uncompromising independent feature offering Peters a searing central role as a struggling actress with a teenage daughter (Rachel Brosnahan) and their shared experiences cohabitating in 1980s era New York City. In what very well could be her finest dramatic performance of the new millennium, Peters does it all in COMING UP ROSES; she even gets to sing in it - the soundtrack features a familiar FIDDLER ON THE ROOF tune, a Kander & Ebb gem and even a stirring original song. Additionally, Miss Peters also sheds some light on her role in Season 2 of NBC's hit musical drama series SMASH. Over the course of the discussion we also look back at her exceptional career on stages and screens large and small, touching upon her theatre work with Stephen Sondheim and Andrew Lloyd Webber and what roles of theirs she would consider in the future, as well as her experiences sharing the small screen with stars like Megan Hilty, Anjelica Huston and Carol Burnett and acting on the big screen for Woody Allen in ALICE. Plus, Bernadette gives us a tantalizing glimpse of what we can expect from her role in an upcoming animated feature film co-starring SMASH's Hilty and GLEE's Lea Michele, the highly anticipated DOROTHY OF OZ, and shares her satisfaction with her original, Bryan Adams-penned musical material for the forthcoming film. Yes, indeed, everything is definitely coming up roses today on BroadwayWorld and it's all thanks to the one and only Bernadette! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Sherie Rene Scott On New 54 Below Show, PIECE OF MEAT, Plus A Career Retrospective & Much MoreInDepth InterView: Sherie Rene Scott On New 54 Below Show, PIECE OF MEAT, Plus A Career Retrospective & Much More
by Pat Cerasaro - October 18, 2012

Today we are talking to one of Broadway's biggest homegrown stars who has appeared in the original New York productions of many memorable modern-day classics, among them THE WHO'S TOMMY, AIDA, THE LAST FIVE YEARS and DIRTY ROTTEN SCOUNDRELS, in additions to highly-regarded turns in the first replacement cast of RENT, the Tommy Tune/Jeff Calhoun revival of GREASE, the Off-Broadway curiosity DEBBIE DOES DALLAS, the first (and only) LA mounting of Randy Newman's FAUST, as well as her starring role in the recent Lincoln Center Theater's production of WOMEN ON THE VERGE OF A NERVOUS BREAKDOWN, and, of course, her own rapturously-received, award-winning solo showpiece, EVERYDAY RAPTURE - the convivially mesmerizing, one-of-a-kind Sherie Rene Scott. Discussing the major transitions in her life, including her transformation from ingenue to leading lady to solo performer, Scott illustrates a unique and varied career as well as opens up about the themes, songs, stories, experiences and encounters that formed the basis for her new solo piece premiering at 54 Below this week, PIECE OF MEAT. Additionally, Scott touches upon her work as the co-owner of the revolutionary Sh-K-Boom Records with her husband, Kurt Deutsch, as well as her own album work over the years, in addition to stories related to the recording of many of their most celebrated titles and the composers whose work is prominently featured on their releases - Tom Kitt, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Michael John LaChiusa and many more included. All of that, plus Mennonites, music and meat - and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Joshua Henry Discusses New Musical AMIGO DUENDE, Plus COTTON CLUB PARADE, PORGY & MoreInDepth InterView: Joshua Henry Discusses New Musical AMIGO DUENDE, Plus COTTON CLUB PARADE, PORGY & More
by Pat Cerasaro - October 4, 2012

Today we are talking to a charismatic leading man who has made quite a mark on Broadway over the last few seasons, having participated in the original Broadways casts of Kander & Ebb's THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS (for which he received a Tony nomination for Best Actor), Green Day's AMERICAN IDIOT (as Favorite Son) and, most recently, the rapturously-received revival of THE GERSHWINS' PORGY & BESS (as Jake), which won the 2012 Tony Award for Best Revival - the multi-talented Joshua Henry. Discussing the creation, casting, rehearsal and reception of each of the aforementioned musicals, as well as working with his collaborators on said projects - John Kander, Susan Stroman, Billie Joe Armstrong, Tom Kitt, Michael Mayer, Audra McDonald, Norm Lewis, Diane Paulus and more included - Henry illustrates the process of bringing the three wildly different entities to the stage and how he shaped his disparate characters within them. Additionally, Henry also discusses his role in the original production of Lin-Manuel Miranda's IN THE HEIGHTS and that Tony-winning Best Musical's inception and legacy. Plus, Henry expounds on his new self-composed family-friendly musical, AMIGO DUENDE, directed by Luis Salgado, which begins performances October 5 at El Musio Del Barrio and also shares the inspiration behind it. All of that, first news on his starring role in COTTON CLUB PARADE at City Center (co-starring GLEE's Amber Riley), sharing the screen with Oscar-winner Jennifer Hudson and the Fab Four in SEX & THE CITY: THE MOVIE, his role in the recent MOTOWN workshop (as Marvin Gaye), future plans and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Anita Gillette Talks Birdland Solo Show, THE FITZGERALD FAMILY CHRISTMAS, Broadway, Hollywood & MoreInDepth InterView: Anita Gillette Talks Birdland Solo Show, THE FITZGERALD FAMILY CHRISTMAS, Broadway, Hollywood & More
by Pat Cerasaro - September 23, 2012

Sometimes once is just not enough, so, today, we have a super-special encore conversation with a recent InDepth InterView participant who shares even more candid tales from her impossibly colorful, genre-spanning career on Broadway and in Hollywood - star of properties as diverse as the Broadway musicals MR. PRESIDENT, KELLY and THEY'RE PLAYING OUR SONG, to movies like MOONSTRUCK and SHALL WE DANCE to her numerous TV appearances on everything from MATCH GAME to QUINCY to 30 ROCK - chameleon-like comedienne and actress Anita Gillette. Discussing some of the more ribald and hilarious stories from her idiosyncratic showbiz career - such as the riotous backstage goings-on out of town at the tryout of one of Broadway biggest bombs, KELLY - as well as spine-tingling "you had to be there"-type memories of the Golden Age - like Irving Berlin stopping by the Winter Garden every Wednesday just to see her Act One showstopper in ALL AMERICAN - Gillette paints a vivid picture of an era gone by, and, also, looks ahead to exciting future endeavors - especially the upcoming Ed Burns-directed feature film, THE FITZGERALD FAMILY CHRISTMAS, opening wide later this year. Of course, Gillette returns to the NYC stage the next two Mondays - September 24 and October 1 - with her new Birdland show, AFTER ALL, so in this all-encompassing conversation we also discuss the themes, style, songs and stories we can anticipate from that intimate solo piece, as well, and she generously shares her recollections of working with some of the men who penned many of the sensational songs she will be performing and figure in to some of the tales she will tell - Charles Strouse, Marvin Hamlisch, Jule Styne, Neil Simon, Woody Allen, Mel Brooks and the aforementioned Irving Berlin included. All of that and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Woody Harrelson On BULLET FOR ADOLF, THE HUNGER GAMES, New HBO Series, Broadway, Hollywood & MoreInDepth InterView: Woody Harrelson On BULLET FOR ADOLF, THE HUNGER GAMES, New HBO Series, Broadway, Hollywood & More
by Pat Cerasaro - September 21, 2012

Today we have the honor of talking to an actor equally skilled in comedy and drama who is now a playwright and director in his own right, with his new play, BULLET FOR ADOLF, being a New York stage hit - the one and only Woody Harrelson. A huge Hollywood star who has appeared in countless recognizable and beloved film properties over the last twenty-five years - from Oliver Stone's NATURAL BORN KILLERS, Milos Foreman's THE PEOPLE VS. LARRY FLYNT, Robert Altman's A PRAIRIE HOME COMPANION and many more notables (not to mention his many comedies, ranging from WHITE MEN CAN'T JUMP to ZOMBIELAND), all the way up to his most recent screen appearances in THE MESSENGER, RAMPART and the international smash hit franchise-kick-off THE HUNGER GAMES - with a special focus on his new Broadway play which he co-wrote and directed, A BULLET FOR ADOLF - in this chat, Woody and I cover the bases. Covering his career from understudying in Neil Simon's BILOXI BLUES on Broadway and his subsequent big break on CHEERS to his string of iconic film portrayals, Harrelson and I shine a light on his theatrical side while he also elucidates the process that finally brought the story of BULLET FOR ADOLF to the theatrical stage, sharing the true life tale behind its characters, location, plot and themes along the way and opening up about possibilities for the play's future - West End, perhaps? Maybe a film? Plus, Harrelson also looks ahead to the many exciting projects coming up in the next several weeks and months now that A BULLET FOR ADOLF has settled in to an extended run at New World Stages, now on sale through October 21 - such as working with fellow InDepth InterView participant Philip Seymour Hoffman and the rest of the starry assortment of players on the highly anticipated THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE and its subsequent sequels (which begin shooting this week in Atlanta, GA); sharing the small screen with Matthew McConaughey on a new HBO thriller/serial-killer-themed anthology series titled TRUE DETECTIVES; starring in SEVEN PSYCHOPATHS, written and directed by celebrated playwright and filmmaker Martin McDonagh; even sharing his candid impressions and adoration of his favorite state of the union, Hawaii - all of that and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Treat Williams Talks WHITE COLLAR, Broadway, Hollywood, Upcoming Projects & MoreInDepth InterView: Treat Williams Talks WHITE COLLAR, Broadway, Hollywood, Upcoming Projects & More
by Pat Cerasaro - September 11, 2012

Today we are talking to a terrifically talented stage and screen performer who has appeared in dozens of film, TV and stage projects over the course of his forty-year career, the thoughtful and charming Treat Williams. In this all-encompassing conversation, Williams and I discuss the many stages of his career thus far, from his early roots co-starring alongside the likes of John Travolta and Marilu Henner in GREASE and OVER HERE! on Broadway in the 1970s, to leading the film adaptation of Terrence McNally's THE RITZ to headlining Milos Foreman's stirring film version of HAIR to starring in handful of other iconic films from his heydey at the top of the Hollywood heap - Steven Spielberg's 1941, Sergio Leone's ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA and Sidney Lumet's PRINCE OF THE CITY included - and even working with Woody Allen on the caustic HOLLYWOOD ENDING. In addition to sharing candid and observant behind-the-scenes stories from the sets of those landmark properties, Williams also reveals his role in the STAR WARS sequel THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK and reflects on his brief time in London with Carrie Fisher, George Lucas and company. Plus, Williams shares his recollections of working with many of his most memorable theatrical collaborators, with some especially intriguing anecdotes surrounding his time spent playing Buddy in the 2001 Roundabout revival of Stephen Sondheim & James Goldman's FOLLIES - with some tales involving the man behind the musical, as well as the ghost of David Belasco - and his insights into his work with David Mamet on OLEANNA, BOBBY GOULD IN HELL, TEXAN and others. As if all of that were not enough - most pertinent of all - Williams gives us the 411 on his season-long arc on USA's hit nighttime drama WHITE COLLAR and imparts his enthusiasm for working with similarly multi-talented many-format star Matt Bomer and the rest of cast and crew while also revealing some details on where his dastardly character is headed in tonight's episode and all the way into 2013 when the show picks up after the hiatus coming up. Also, Williams sheds some light on his spate of upcoming projects. All of that and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Rob Morrow & Robert D. Wachs Discuss New Paul Jabara Disco Musical LAST DANCE & MoreInDepth InterView: Rob Morrow & Robert D. Wachs Discuss New Paul Jabara Disco Musical LAST DANCE & More
by Pat Cerasaro - September 1, 2012

Today we are focusing a super-special spotlight on one of the Fall's most intriguing musical entries trying out in New York, the York Theatre Company's lab mounting of the new Paul Jabara jukebox musical LAST DANCE, by talking to the show's lead, recognizable TV and film star Rob Morrow, and the show's lead producer, noted comedic shepherd and filmmaker Robert D. Wachs, whom filled me in on all aspects of the show in a comprehensive chat late last week just prior to this week's start of rehearsals. In this all-encompassing conversation, Morrow, Wachs and I discuss the genesis of the new disco-themed musical celebrating the life and career of Jabara, the accomplished Emmy, Grammy and Academy Award-winning composer of Broadway shows (RACHAEL LILY ROSENBLOOMÂ… AND DON'T YOU EVER FORGET IT), movie songs ("Last Dance" from THANK GOD IT'S FRIDAY; the titular "The Main Event") and numerous pop/rock/disco hits, such as "It's Raining Men" by The Weather Girls, Barbra Streisand and Donna Summer's epic disco duet "Enough Is Enough (No More Tears)" and his many solo hits, as well as the finer points of the story, concept, casting and the ultimate goals of the new Philip William McKinley-directed production, which features a book by Shaun McKenna. Additionally, Morrow and Wachs each generously share showbiz tales from their storied careers involving such big names as Eddie Murphy, Michael Bennett, Jonathan Larson, Tony Scott and many more and both copiously convey their infectious enthusiasm for the forthcoming fully-produced lab presentation of the new musical that will play for five performances beginning September 20 as they prepare for its first viewing before a paying audience. All of that and much, much more awaits! (more...)
Exclusive InDepth InterView: Tonya Pinkins Talks Broadway, Hollywood, 54 Below, Upcoming Projects & MoreExclusive InDepth InterView: Tonya Pinkins Talks Broadway, Hollywood, 54 Below, Upcoming Projects & More
by Pat Cerasaro - August 24, 2012

Today we are talking to a Tony Award-winning star known for her many impressive appearances on Broadway in JELLY'S LAST JAM, PLAY ON!, THE WILD PARTY and her tremendous title turn in the towering CAROLINE, OR CHANGE - the one and only Tonya Pinkins. Opening up about her career and many of her most memorable roles, Pinkins lets us in to her world and shares experiences of working with some of the most noted names in theatre - George C. Wolfe, Harold Prince, August Wilson, Stephen Sondheim, Lloyd Richards, Daniel Sullivan, David Esbjornson and many more among them - on everything from MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG, her Broadway debut, to her many musical roles to August Wilson's THE PIANO LESSON and RADIO GOLF all the way to last season's Shakespeare In The Park double-header of THE MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR and MEASURE FOR MEASURE. Most importantly, Pinkins fills us in on all the details about her upcoming Ethel Waters tribute at 54 Below and what we can expect from one of musical theatre's most dynamic divas taking on the song catalog of an entertainment pioneer in this New York premiere of the in-development new musical solo spotlight showcase. Additionally, Pinkins shares some candid reminiscences about some of her most fondly remembered film and television roles - such as ABOVE THE RIM, BEAT STREET, ROMANCE & CIGARETTES, ENCHANTED and others - as well as offers her thoughts on the ever-changing world of soaps, having appeared in major roles on both AS THE WORLD TURNS and ALL MY CHILDREN. All of that, comments on her two upcoming feature films - HOME and NEWLYWEEDS - and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Carla Gugino On POLITICAL ANIMALS, Arthur Miller, Sondheim Musicals, Roundabout & More!InDepth InterView: Carla Gugino On POLITICAL ANIMALS, Arthur Miller, Sondheim Musicals, Roundabout & More!
by Pat Cerasaro - August 18, 2012

Today we are talking to a spectacularly talented stage and screen star who has appeared in countless film and TV properties over the years as well as in many remarkable theatrical productions all about her major role on the USA special miniseries event POLITICAL ANIMALS, which concludes this Sunday at 9 PM - Carla Gugino. In her many film roles - including SON IN LAW, MICHAEL, SNAKE EYES, the SPY KIDS trilogy, SIN CITY, NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM, WATCHMEN, SUCKER PUNCH, MR. POPPER'S PENGUINS and NEW YEAR'S EVE, to name but a few - as well as in her string of stage successes - Arthur Miller's AFTER THE FALL, Tennessee Williams's SUDDENLY, LAST SUMMER, Eugene O'Neill's DESIRE UNDER THE ELMS, and, most recently, treading the boards with Rosemary Harris and Jim Dale in THE ROAD TO MECCA - Gugino has displayed a considerable commitment to her craft and a striking sensitivity for the medium she is inhabiting. (more...)
2010 Flashback - InDepth InterView: Marvin Hamlisch2010 Flashback - InDepth InterView: Marvin Hamlisch
by Pat Cerasaro - August 7, 2012

According to a family spokesperson, composer Marvin Hamlisch passed away Monday evening at 68 years old following a brief illness. Here's an interview with the legendary man from 2010. (more...)
InDepth InterView: Beth Leavel Talks CALL ME MADAM, ELF, MINSKY'S & More!InDepth InterView: Beth Leavel Talks CALL ME MADAM, ELF, MINSKY'S & More!
by Pat Cerasaro - July 24, 2012

Today we are talking to a terrifically talented triple-threat who has made appearances on Broadway in entities as diverse as David Merrick's original Gower Champion-directed production of 42nd STREET, her debut, to roles in Susan Stroman's CRAZY FOR YOU, Hal Prince's landmark revival of SHOW BOAT and the Mark Bramble revival of 42nd STREET to THE CIVIL WAR, MAMMA MIA!, YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN, ELF, and, most recently, as the star of BABY, IT'S YOU! - to say nothing of her Tony Award-winning turn in THE DROWSY CHAPERONE - the thoroughly delightful and dynamic dame herself, Beth Leavel. Discussing some of her career highlights thus far - such as the night of her Tony Award win - while generously sharing her caustic wit and giving us a glimpse into the life of a modern-day leading lady, Leavel also offers us some insights into her newest role - one originally essayed by no less than Broadway icon Ethel Merman - that of Irving Berlin's heroine, Mrs. Sally Adams, in the politically-themed musical comedy CALL ME MADAM, playing at the Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma, July 24-28. In addition to all about CALL ME MADAM, Leavel also imparts her affection for past co-stars and collaborators - Sutton Foster, Christine Ebersole, Andrea Martin, Millicent Martin, Dolores Grey, Burt Bacharach and more included - and looks ahead to some parts that she would potentially consider pursuing in the future (MINSKY'S perhaps?). All of that and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Patricia Kelly Discusses GENE KELLY @ 100, Lincoln Center Shows, SINGIN' IN THE RAIN HD & MoreInDepth InterView: Patricia Kelly Discusses GENE KELLY @ 100, Lincoln Center Shows, SINGIN' IN THE RAIN HD & More
by Pat Cerasaro - July 20, 2012

Today we are talking to Patricia Kelly, the widow of one of the most iconic and influential performers in entertainment history, Gene Kelly, all about her husband's incomparable career on Broadway and in Hollywood, in honor of his centennial. Tracing Gene Kelly's journey from his theatre roots starring in Cole Porter's LEAVE IT TO ME!, Rodgers & Hart's PAL JOEY and William Saroyan's Pulitzer Prize-winning THE TIME OF YOUR LIFE on Broadway to his unforgettable screen appearances in many of the greatest movie musicals ever made - COVER GIRL, SINGIN' IN THE RAIN, THE PIRATE, AN AMERICAN IN PARIS and many more included - Mrs. Kelly gives us a look into the life of one of the most important artists of the twentieth century. In addition to behind-the-scenes stories involving Kelly's frequent collaborators - such as esteemed director Vincente Minnelli, songwriter and producer Arthur Freed, arranger Saul Chaplin and others - Mrs. Kelly also shares candid anecdotes involving her husband's involvement with directing Rodgers & Hammerstein's FLOWER DRUM SONG on Broadway, helming the feature film adaptation of HELLO, DOLLY! starring Barbra Streisand, as well as his appearing in two idiosyncratic movie musicals later in his life, LES DEMOISELLES DE ROCHEFORT (THE YOUNG GIRLS OF ROCHEFORT) for Jacques Demy, as well as his au revoir to movie musicals in form of the Olivia Newton-John roller disco starrer XANADU. Additionally, Mrs. Kelly fills us in on all the details about this weekend's two-night Gene Kelly retrospective celebration, which she leads and narrates, as part of GENE KELLY @ 100 and her future plans for the multimedia presentation - each evening titled AN EVENING OF GENE KELLY and CHANGING THE LOOK OF DANCE ON FILM, respective - as she begins to tour the show across the country. Plus, reflections on SINGIN' IN THE RAIN's 60th anniversary and the recent Fathom HD premiere presentation in theaters, the impact of Kelly's work behind the camera, his choreographic legacy, what a legend is like at home, memories of attending the opening night of THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA (starring HELLO, DOLLY! lead Michael Crawford), what the master would say about GLEE, SMASH, BUNHEADS and today's movie musical renaissance, as well as much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Cheyenne Jackson Talks New Singles, New EP, MOCKINGBIRD LANE, Liberace Biopic, 30 ROCK, LUCKY STIFF & MoreInDepth InterView: Cheyenne Jackson Talks New Singles, New EP, MOCKINGBIRD LANE, Liberace Biopic, 30 ROCK, LUCKY STIFF & More
by Pat Cerasaro - July 18, 2012

Today we are talking to one of Broadway's most recent stars to make a big impression in Hollywood with his many recent TV and film appearances - from GLEE, 30 ROCK and CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM to the forthcoming HBO Liberace biopic BEHIND THE CANDELABRA as well as the new NBC series MOCKINGBIRD LANE - following his stints on the Great White Way in the lead roles of musicals such as ALL SHOOK UP, XANADU and FINIAN'S RAINBOW - the convivial, exceedingly talented Cheyenne Jackson. Giving us an all-access pass to his new role as songwriter, crafting two pop gems - "Drive" and "Before You" - and creating accompanying music videos for them as a preview of his forthcoming EP, which will also include collaborations with Sia and more. In addition to his recording career and songwriting responsibilities, Jackson also has a number of high profile film and TV projects coming up and he gives us the 411 on his role opposite Michael Douglas in the new Steven Soderbergh HBO film BEHIND THE CANDELABRA, as well as shares his experiences filming the new Bryan Fuller-created NBC reboot of THE MUNSTERS titled MOCKINGBIRD LANE. Also, will he be returning to 30 ROCK for its final season? What about a GLEE reprise? Plus, Jackson fills us in on the newest member of his family, as well as recollections of working on Dustin Lance Black's remarkable landmark PROP 8 live multi-media presentation, his involvement with Neil LaBute's THE HEART OF THE MATTER, his new film MUTUAL FRIENDS, participating in BARACK ON BROADWAY duetting with SMASH star Megan Hilty and what we can expect from his appearance in the new Christopher Ashley-directed movie musical adaptation of Ahrens & Flaherty's LUCKY STIFF. All of that and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Anita Gillette Talks BYE BYE BIRDIE, 30 ROCK, Birdland, Golden Age & A Career RetrospectiveInDepth InterView: Anita Gillette Talks BYE BYE BIRDIE, 30 ROCK, Birdland, Golden Age & A Career Retrospective
by Pat Cerasaro - July 12, 2012

Today we are talking to a celebrated comedienne and actress known for her decades-spanning career on screens and stages large and small - from making her Broadway debut in the original Jerome Robbins production of GYPSY on Broadway in 1960 to her many musical roles throughout the 60s to her countless game show and variety show appearances following that all the way to creating an unforgettable character in MOONSTRUCK in the 1980s, as well as her subsequent oft-Neil Simon stage work; now, playing Tina Fey's sweet and daffy mom on NBC's 30 ROCK and, most recently, appearing in Nora & Celia Ephron's LOVE, LOSS AND WHAT I WORE and the Playwright's Horizons premiere production of THE BIG MEAL in the new millennium - the one of a kind Anita Gillette. Analyzing her nearly sixty-year career and sharing candid stories of her brushes with some of Broadway and Hollywood's brightest talents - Jule Styne to Ethel Merman to Irving Berlin to Burt Lancaster and beyond - Gillette paints a vivid portrait of the tail end of the Golden Age of Broadway and the heady game show days of TV in the 1960s and 70s to her lauded stage work with Neil Simon and many of the great comedy and musical writers in the years since. Additionally, Gillette and I discuss her current essaying of the role of Mae Peterson in the new Regal Music Theatre production of Charles Strouse and Lee Adams's BYE BYE BIRDIE in Massachusetts as she looks towards opening night tomorrow and relates her joy in participating in a production that has some behind-the-scenes help by her loving granddaughter (while another attends their summer camp). Plus, Gillette's observations on sharing a soundstage with Alec Baldwin, Tina Fey, Elaine Stritch and Buck Henry for a recent 30 ROCK shoot, reflections on her fondest and most celebrated comedy roles, hilarious memories of appearing in some short-running flops (JIMMY, SKYSKRAPER) as well as in some big hits (GYPSY), her upcoming series of master classes titled "Life In The Business", her return to Birdland with her concert show, AFTER ALL, her role in an upcoming Ed Burns film and maybe even a role in a new Alexander Payne film - all of that, all about attending the Diamond Jubilee celebration in the United Kingdom and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Paul Becker Talks TWILIGHT: BREAKING DAWN, Ben Vereen Documentary, Upcoming Films & MoreInDepth InterView: Paul Becker Talks TWILIGHT: BREAKING DAWN, Ben Vereen Documentary, Upcoming Films & More
by Pat Cerasaro - July 9, 2012

Today we are talking to a terrifically talented triple-threat who has graced the silver screen in CHICAGO, as well as in the TV productions of THE MUSIC MAN, ONCE UPON A MATTRESS and in many stunt and dance double roles in his career thus far who has since become the protegee of dance extraordinaire Kenny Ortega and broken out on his own with a string of striking and memorable sequences in entities as diverse as TV's HELLCATS and the recent feature films THE CABIN IN THE WOODS, SUCKER PUNCH, MIRROR, MIRROR and TWILIGHT: BREAKING DAWN PART 1 - gifted dancer/choreographer/director Paul Becker. Talking about many of his most memorable past projects and filling us in on his many current and future ones - TWILIGHT: BREAKING DAWN PART 2, a Ben Vereen documentary, an original movie musical titled STAGE FRIGHT, a James Gray film featuring Jeremy Renner and Marion Cotillard, a Lifetime movie musical with Karen Olivo and even more - Becker brings us into his unique and idiosyncratic world and gives us a glimpse into how he achieves consistent excellence in all of his many endeavors as he attempts to define his anomalous career for us. Additionally, Becker takes a look back at acting onscreen in the Oscar-winning Best Picture CHICAGO, choreographing the ultimate vampire wedding, judging SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE? Canada, producing CANADA'S GOT TALENT, giving two hundred dancers movement for a Michael Buble music video and he also shares some hopes and wishes for what he would like to take on in his blindingly bright future in show business - directing a feature film, perhaps? What about a Broadway show when time permits? The possibilities are multitude and seemingly endless and Becker is one of the most brightly shining behind-the-scenes talents on the rise, as is clear to qualify by all of the exquisitely exciting entities he is involved with on the horizon, both near and far. Plus, Becker shares his experiences choreographing various THE MUPPETS movies, working with Ortega on the Jonas Brothers and Miley Cyrus concert tours, directing the first YouTube feature film, dancing with death in MASTERS OF HORROR, giving moves to monsters in THE CABIN IN THE WOODS, staging the spectacular finale of MIRROR, MIRROR showcasing Julia Roberts, choreographing the fairy tale characters of ONCE UPON A TIME, and he also offers opinions on GLEE and SMASH, reveals his early influences, favorite stars, formative films - and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Ben Vereen Talks Solo Show, 54 Below, New Projects & A Career RetrospectiveInDepth InterView: Ben Vereen Talks Solo Show, 54 Below, New Projects & A Career Retrospective
by Pat Cerasaro - June 27, 2012

Today we are talking to a Tony Award-winning legend famous for his performances starring in the original Broadway productions of PIPPIN and JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, as well as his celebrated turns in stage and screen projects as diverse as ALL THAT JAZZ, SWEET CHARITY, CHICAGO, FOSSE, WICKED, GRIND, ROOTS, I'M NOT RAPPAPORT, GOLDEN BOY, IDLEWILD, FUNNY LADY, HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER and many more - the simply incredible Ben Vereen. Discussing many of his most fondly remembered roles and recounting his experiences working with many legendary directors and collaborators - Bob Fosse, Hal Prince, Tom O'Horgan, Herbert Ross, Ann Reinking, Dan Sullivan, Sammy Davis, Jr., Barbra Streisand, Liza Minnelli and many more among them - Vereen paints a vivid picture of a bygone Broadway and reminisces about many of the most significant theatrical creators of the past fifty years and his roles in their stage and film projects. Additionally, Vereen fills us in on what we can expect from his upcoming solo spotlight show - a career retrospective - that will be kicking off at 54 Below on July 10 for a two-week engagement before an even larger, Broadway-bound mounting later this year at Princeton. Also, Vereen elaborates on the causes closest to his heart, shares thoughts on GLEE and SMASH, future plans and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Jeremy Kushnier Talks JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, Birdland Concert, Solo Album & MoreInDepth InterView: Jeremy Kushnier Talks JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, Birdland Concert, Solo Album & More
by Pat Cerasaro - June 18, 2012

Today we are talking to a supremely gifted performer who can be seen eight times a week on Broadway in the currently running Des McAnuff revival of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice's JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, Jeremy Kushnier. Tracing his Broadway trajectory from his memorable debut in FOOTLOOSE back in the late 1990s to his impressive regional theatre and concert work - CHESS to The Dream Engine to BRIGHT LIGHTS, BIG CITY and beyond - to his success touring in AIDA, RENT and others, up to his most recent gig in JERSEY BOYS, Kushnier opens up about his diverse career thus far and what we can expect from him in the future, near and far. Plus, Kushnier analyzes the five roles he has essayed in the current production of SUPERSTAR so far, since he was first brought into the production as a standby and understudy, after all - Jesus, Judas, Pilate and two different priests - and shares his enthusiasm for the dazzling, Tony Award-nominated production - all of this as he prepares for his long-awaited upcoming solo spotlight concert at Birdland on June 18! Additionally, Kushnier shares plans and wishes for a forthcoming solo album, as well as offers his thoughts on GLEE, SMASH and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Matthew Modine Talks Steve Jobs Biopic, THE DARK KNIGHT RISES, Stage, Screen & MoreInDepth InterView: Matthew Modine Talks Steve Jobs Biopic, THE DARK KNIGHT RISES, Stage, Screen & More
by Pat Cerasaro - June 15, 2012

Today we are talking to an actor who has appeared in over fifty feature films and starred in plays on Broadway and in the West End all about his career thus far, looking ahead to his new role as John Sculley in the forthcoming jOBS, co-starring Ashton Kutcher as Steve Jobs and Josh Gad as Steve Wozniak, directed by Joshua Michael Stewart - the one and only Matthew Modine. In this all-encompassing chat tracing the past to the present, Modine also manages to give us the scoop on his featured role in the final part of Christopher Nolan's BATMAN trilogy, THE DARK KNIGHT RISES, and shares his candid impressions of working with Anne Hathaway, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and the rest of the starry cast of the sure-to-be blockbuster of the summer. Additionally, Modine illustrates his experiences working with director Robert Altman on screen and stage projects as diverse as SHORT CUTS and STREAMERS on film, Arthur Miller's FINISHING THE PICTURE in Chicago and RESURRECTION BLUES at the Old Vic in the West End and Modine expresses his overall general enthusiasm for acting and reveals deeply probing insight into many of his most memorable and famous roles to date - ranging from roles in Stanley Kubrick's FULL METAL JACKET to Alan Parker's BIRDY to his work with Oliver Stone, Tony Richardson, Jonathan Demme, John Sayles, Mike Figgis, John Schlesinger and others. All of that, a thorough discussion of his recent roles in the theatrical productions of TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD and THE MIRACLE WORKER, as well as recollections of working on many of his most beloved projects to date, such as AND THE BAND PLAYED ON, THE REAL BLONDE, ORPHANS, CUTTHROAT ISLAND, BYE BYE LOVE, THE HOTEL NEW HAMPSHIRE, WEEDS - and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView Tony Awards Edition: Josh Young On JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, EVITA & MoreInDepth InterView Tony Awards Edition: Josh Young On JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, EVITA & More
by Pat Cerasaro - June 5, 2012

Today we are talking to the Tony Award-nominated Best Featured Actor In A Musical who has set Broadway ablaze with his much-talked-about portrayal of Judas in Des McAnuff's spectacular revival of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice's seminal rock opera, JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR - the electric and charismatic Josh Young. Tracing his journey with the Biblically-themed musical from the hallowed grounds of the Stratford Shakespeare Festival in Canada - where he first made his mark on the theatre world with his acting of another iconic Lloyd Webber/Rice anti-hero, Che in EVITA; as well as THE GRAPES OF WRATH - all the way to La Jolla in California, and, now, to eight performances a week on the Great White Way, Young shares his overflowing enthusiasm for the theatrical form and details his life as a performer; a veritable dream come true for the self-proclaimed Broadway baby. In addition to all about his perspective on Judas and his thoughts on the daring and innovative SUPERSTAR, Young also describes working with Tony-winning director Des McAnuff and how his training at the Royal Shakespeare Festival has prepared him for the rigors of a Broadway hit. Plus, Young looks back on past performances and his favorite roles to date as well as shines a light on some of the parts he would consider taking on in the future, both near and far. Plus, Young reacts to his Tony Award nomination, fills us in on genesis of the many new lyrics for the heavenly SUPERSTAR revival, shares thoughts on GLEE, SMASH and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView: Jane Krakowski On 30 ROCK Final Season, Town Hall Concert & A Career RetrospectiveInDepth InterView: Jane Krakowski On 30 ROCK Final Season, Town Hall Concert & A Career Retrospective
by Pat Cerasaro - June 2, 2012

Today we are talking to one of the entertainment industry's most celebrated Broadway/Hollywood crossover stars, who has gone from memorable cameo childhood roles on the big screen in hit properties such as NATIONAL LAMPOON'S VACATION and FATAL ATTRACTION to big Broadway success with her stints in STARLIGHT EXPRESS and GRAND HOTEL later that decade, to small screen success with ALLY MCBEAL in the 90s all the way to Tony-winning and Olivier-winning glory with the sensational revival of NINE in 2003 on Broadway, directed by David Leveaux, and GUYS & DOLLS in the West End, directed by Michael Grandage - as well as three Emmy nominations for her seven-year stint on NBC's richly awarded and highly celebrated Tina Fey comedy 30 ROCK - the precocious, alluring and arousing Jane Krawkowski. Sharing the details about her upcoming concert performance at Town Hall on June 8, Krakowski opens up about the many lauded composers and creators she has collaborated with over the years - Andrew Lloyd Webber, Stephen Sondheim, Marc Shaiman, Scott Wittman, Maury Yeston, Tommy Tune, Steven Spielberg and many more - and what we can expect from her brassy and bawdy solo show, in addition to shedding some light on her Broadway days; whether on roller skates in STARLIGHT EXPRESS and the workshop of XANADU or treading the boards in workshops and productions for master director Tommy Tune. Also, Krakowski clues us in on where her classic 30 ROCK character Jenna Maroney will end up in the final, seventh season of the show that begins shooting in August and reveals her affection for her 30 ROCK and DAMN YANKEES co-star Cheyenne Jackson and their experiences filming the recent live episode (and singing the theme song). Plus, potential future stage roles she would like to essay someday - KISS OF THR SPIDER WOMAN, perhaps? Or, maybe, a reprise of her Adelaide in GUYS & DOLLS? Dot in SUNDAY IN THE PARK WITH GEORGE, even? - as well as Milliken Breakfast Show memories from the 1970s and much, much more! (more...)
InDepth InterView Tony Awards Edition: Joe DiPietro - Part 2: NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT, THE TOXIC AVENGER & What's NextInDepth InterView Tony Awards Edition: Joe DiPietro - Part 2: NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT, THE TOXIC AVENGER & What's Next
by Pat Cerasaro - June 1, 2012

Today we are talking to a two-time Tony Award winning lyricist and book writer who was responsible for the 2010 Best Musical winner, MEMPHIS, and who has since written the libretto of the Gershwin revue NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET and received a well-earned Tony nomination for his efforts; one of the show's ten nods - Joe DiPietro. In this concluding portion of our conversation, DiPietro and I break down the process of creating NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT and he comments on the starry cast - including Matthew Broderick, Kelli O'Hara, Judy Kaye and Estelle Parsons - and the process of collaboration in bringing the 2012 Tony Awards top nominee to the Broadway stage. Additionally, DiPietro fills us in on the future for THE TOXIC AVENGER and its tentative Broadway plans, as well as the upcoming West End mountings of MEMPHIS and, hopefully, NICE WORK - and, a look ahead to his next David Bryan collaboration, CHASING THE SONG, as well. Plus, a glance back at his work on I LOVE YOU, YOU'RE PERFECT NOW CHANGE, F*CKING MEN and ALLEGRO and his favorite current pop acts. (more...)
InDepth InterView Tony Awards Edition: Joe DiPietro - Part 1: MEMPHIS, Early Inspirations & Film Scoop!InDepth InterView Tony Awards Edition: Joe DiPietro - Part 1: MEMPHIS, Early Inspirations & Film Scoop!
by Pat Cerasaro - June 1, 2012

Today we are talking to a two-time Tony Award winning lyricist and book writer who was responsible for the 2010 Best Musical winner, MEMPHIS, and who has since written the libretto of the Gershwin revue NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET and received a well-earned Tony nomination for his efforts; one of the show's ten nods - Joe DiPietro. Discussing the finer points of his many musicals with a special focus on the two currently running on Broadway - MEMPHIS and NICE WORK - DiPietro eloquently elaborates on the process of creating both shows and the challenges new musicals these days face on their developmental road to Broadway. Additionally, we discuss Montego Glover, Chad Kimball, Matthew Broderick, Kelli O'Hara, Judy Kaye, Adam Pascal and the many other talented individuals onstage and off who have participated in the two hit productions treading the boards eight times a week. Besides the complete 411 on MEMPHIS in Part I and NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT in Part II, DiPietro also opens up about his new musical endeavor with Bon Jovi and MEMPHIS composer David Bryan, THE TOXIC AVENGER, and its star, Constantine Maroulis - and don't miss my exclusive interview with Constantine all about the most recent Alley Theater iteration of the show, available here. Plus, DiPietro shares fond remembrances of shows past - I LOVE YOU, YOU'RE PERFECT, NOW CHANGE, F*CKING MEN and ALLEGRO - and future - CHASING THE DREAM - and expresses his infectious enthusiasm for the theatrical arts in general by revealing his early theatre memories, favorite scores and general love for the art form. All of that and much, much more! In Part I, DiPietro and I analyze MEMPHIS and take a step-by-step look at its creation and the development of the Tony Award-winning Best Musical. Additionally, DiPietro shares his theatrical influences and the shows and scores that meant the most to him growing up. Plus, he shares his thoughts on GLEE, SMASH and the new movie musical era. (more...)
InDepth InterView Tony Awards Edition: Jeff Calhoun - Part 2: NEWSIES & What's NextInDepth InterView Tony Awards Edition: Jeff Calhoun - Part 2: NEWSIES & What's Next
by Pat Cerasaro - May 25, 2012

Today we are kicking off the 2012 InDepth InterView Tony Awards Series with the director/choreographer of the hottest hit of the 2011-2012 theatrical season, NEWSIES, that was recently awarded with a boatload of Tony Award nominations, in addition to a short-running show that has a very vocal group of advocates and supporters that also received a handful of Tony noms, BONNIE & CLYDE - the passionate and visionary Jeff Calhoun. Discussing all aspects of his mega-hit with Disney's NEWSIES and his success d'estime with Frank Wildhorn's BONNIE & CLYDE, as well as all about his years spent developing both, Calhoun illustrates his process and sheds some light on many aspects of the creation of the wildly different vehicles, as well as his opinions on the theatrical environment of today. Additionally, Calhoun outlines his experiences working with NEWIES and BONNIE & CLYDE breakout stars Jeremy Jordan and Laura Osnes - both Tony nominees - as well as his many years spent as an associate choreographer for legendary Tony-winning master director Tommy Tune creating many remarkable musicals such as GRAND HOTEL and THE WILL ROGERS FOLLIES. Plus, Calhoun conveys his infectious enthusiasm for his craft and discusses what drives him to create while also sharing his humbled appreciation for the recognition of both his new musicals this season by the Tony Award committee and reflecting on his vast multitude of experiences in the theatre so far in his career - everything from starring in SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS and MY ONE & ONLY on Broadway to choreographing THE WILL ROGERS FOLLIES and BUSKER ALLEY with Tommy Tune and transitioning into directing/choreographing with the hit revivals of GREASE, BIG RIVER, PIPPIN, ANNIE GET YOUR GUN (with Graciele Daniele), BELLS ARE RINGING, as well as GREY GARDENS and the rest. All of that and much, much more in this career-spanning conversation with one of Broadway's best! (more...)
InDepth InterView Tony Awards Edition: Jeff Calhoun - Part 1: BONNIE & CLYDE, Plus A Career RetrospectiveInDepth InterView Tony Awards Edition: Jeff Calhoun - Part 1: BONNIE & CLYDE, Plus A Career Retrospective
by Pat Cerasaro - May 25, 2012

Today we are kicking off the 2012 InDepth InterView Tony Awards Series with the director/choreographer of the hottest hit of the 2011-2012 theatrical season, NEWSIES, that was recently awarded with a boatload of Tony Award nominations, in addition to a short-running show that has a very vocal group of advocates and supporters that also received a handful of Tony noms, BONNIE & CLYDE - the passionate and visionary Jeff Calhoun. Discussing all aspects of his mega-hit with Disney's NEWSIES and his success d'estime with Frank Wildhorn's BONNIE & CLYDE, as well as all about his years spent developing both, Calhoun illustrates his process and sheds some light on many aspects of the creation of the wildly different vehicles, as well as his opinions on the theatrical environment of today. Additionally, Calhoun outlines his experiences working with NEWIES and BONNIE & CLYDE breakout stars Jeremy Jordan and Laura Osnes - both Tony nominees - as well as his many years spent as an associate choreographer for legendary Tony-winning master director Tommy Tune creating many remarkable musicals such as GRAND HOTEL and THE WILL ROGERS FOLLIES. Plus, Calhoun conveys his infectious enthusiasm for his craft and discusses what drives him to create while also sharing his humbled appreciation for the recognition of both his new musicals this season by the Tony Award committee and reflecting on his vast multitude of experiences in the theatre so far in his career - everything from starring in SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS and MY ONE & ONLY on Broadway to choreographing THE WILL ROGERS FOLLIES and BUSKER ALLEY with Tommy Tune and transitioning into directing/choreographing with the hit revivals of GREASE, BIG RIVER, PIPPIN, ANNIE GET YOUR GUN (with Graciele Daniele), BELLS ARE RINGING, as well as GREY GARDENS and the rest. All of that and much, much more in this career-spanning conversation with one of Broadway's best! (more...)
Exclusive InDepth InterView: Tammy Blanchard On HOW TO SUCCEED, THE BIG C, GYPSY, Judy Garland & MoreExclusive InDepth InterView: Tammy Blanchard On HOW TO SUCCEED, THE BIG C, GYPSY, Judy Garland & More
by Pat Cerasaro - May 19, 2012

Today we are talking to one of the stars of the hit revival of HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT REALLY TRYING - which will be closing this Sunday after a 16-month run, so catch it while you can - who has also carved out an astonishingly accomplished resume on film and TV since her stunning, Emmy-winning small screen debut in a lead role as the young Judy Garland in ME & MY SHADOWS: LIFE WITH JUDY GARLAND - the beautiful and tremendously talented Tammy Blanchard. Touching on many of her most memorable big screen and small screen roles and sharing her experiences of working with many of her impressive co-stars and creative collaborators - Bernadette Peters, Jessica Lange, Stephen Sondheim, Arthur Laurents, Sam Mendes, and her co-star on two films, the late Brittany Murphy - Blanchard eloquently illustrates her rise to stardom and the roles and performances she has given that she is fondest of - GYPSY to BELLA to THE GOOD SHEPHERD and beyond. Additionally, Blanchard clues us in on what we can expect from her multi-episode character arc on Showtime's hit dramedy series THE BIG C and what it was like to play such a unique and unusual character - as well as her feelings on sharing the screen (and the onscreen bedroom) with previous InDepth InterView participants John Benjamin Hickey and Brian d'Arcy James. Plus, Blanchard shares how her new role as a mom has shaped her craft and career as well as future plans post-HOW TO SUCCEED, observations on GLEE and SMASH and much, much more! (more...)

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