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BWW Exclusive: Meet the Makers of RATATOUILLE: The TikTok Musical- Christopher Routh


Chris designed the virtual set for Ratatouille.

When Broadway is dark, all that it takes is one little rat and a team of up-and-coming theatre makers to save the day. Last weekend, the Actors Fund revealed that, on its premiere night, Ratatouille: The TikTok Musical generated more than $1 million in ticket sales, to benefit The Actors Fund.

Presented by the Tony Award-winning theatrical production company Seaview, in association with TodayTix Presents and TikTok, Ratatouille: The TikTok Musical streamed for 72 hours only last weekend, featuring content created by members of TikTok's #RatatouilleMusical Community, whose collective work has earned the engagement of more than 200 million fans around the globe.

Check out what the critics had to say about the incredible musical event and catch up on what Ratatouille: The TikTok Musical is all about!

Below, BroadwayWorld is catching up with one of the creators, Christopher Routh- the mastermind behind the set design!

BWW Exclusive: Meet the Makers of RATATOUILLE: The TikTok Musical- Christopher Routh

The response to this project has been insane from the beginning- what has it been like taking it all in on your end?

It's really been an exciting and unexpected journey! At the time this all started blowing up I was just starting a temporary job at a small Macaron shop in NYC. I simultaneously was working 6 days a week with crazy hours and tried to also create of TikTok and the ratatouille musical. I was juggling so much at once but the end result was so beautiful and very impressive for the little time that we had!

Can you tell us more about your inspiration and the work that went into getting it to the finish line?

My inspiration for my work came from all the other TikTok creators songs and content. It was really a collaborative effort! I would see that a creator had made a song for one of the characters on Ratatouille and I wanted to make it some to life by adding a set to match! For example, RJ Christian did a song to Anton Ego trying Remy's ratatouille for the first; I wanted to create a scene for that. So I drew inspiration of that song and visuals from the actually movie and created a set that resembled the inside of Gusteau's restaurant! But in a theatrical way with dramatic theatrical lighting! This was all ok TikTok of course.

BWW Exclusive: Meet the Makers of RATATOUILLE: The TikTok Musical- Christopher Routh

The real challenge was to transfer my ideas to a virtual space which you saw in the musical! There was a struggle with figuring out how that would work with the amount of time we had as well. In the end David Bengali decided to take my concepts and digitize them and use certain elements of my set design into the backgrounds for the virtual space! My one set design from my model did make the pre show cut though! I'm very happy about that!

What are your hopes for the future of Ratatouille?

I hope Ratatouille the musical will find its way on to a stage one day! If not Broadway then maybe in a Disney park or cruise ship! It has so much potential as we already witnessed! I also wish for a cast album! I can't wait to listen to the overture over and over again!

BWW Exclusive: Meet the Makers of RATATOUILLE: The TikTok Musical- Christopher Routh

What do you think about the future of TikTok as a starting point for other musicals? Do you think this is wake-up call for producers and other theatre makers to take content on this medium and other social media seriously?

TikTok was the perfect birth place for this musical and many more to come! I can't say this is the first TikTok musical to come from this social app because there has been so many other creators making musicals on TikTok during this pandemic! Ratatouille was just a lucky one that turned into a trend! Must have been the popularity of the Pixar movie! It's really amazing being the first crowd sourced musical and have been recognized by Broadway! I really do hope more Broadway producers do take talent on apps like TikTok seriously! I think it's been able to shine even more on TikTok

Because of the pandemic and because there is not live theater! All of this Broadway eagerly has been put into content on TikTok!

BWW Exclusive: Meet the Makers of RATATOUILLE: The TikTok Musical- Christopher Routh

What else are you working on right now?

I am currently working on a few new set models for shows that I've been wanting to do! The most recent one is Beetlejuice The Musical! I am such a huge fan of David Korins's work and always wanted to recreate it myself! So I've been working on the house set piece from Beetlejuice the musical for some time now! It's rather on of my hardest builds yet! From there I'm exploring creating new set designs for a concept of UP: The Musical based on the Pixar movie UP! It was also trending for a bit on TikTok! I have so many more ideas coming up and a lot of them are ideas that my followers want to see! So stick around It's only the beginning for Shoebox Musicals!

Ratatouille: The TikTok Musical starred Wayne Brady (Django), Tituss Burgess (Remy), Kevin Chamberlin (Gusteau), Tony Award winner André De Shields (Ego), Andrew Barth Feldman (Linguini), Grammy Award nominee Adam Lambert (Emile), Tony winner Priscilla Lopez (Mabel), Tony nominee Ashley Park (Colette), Owen Tabaka (Young Ego), and three-time Tony nominee Mary Testa (Skinner), with Cori Jaskier, Talia Suskauer, Nikisha Williams, JJ Niemann, John Michael Lyles, Raymond J. Lee, and Joy Woods as the ensemble.

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