BWW TV: 'RENT' CHECK with Justin Johnston - Episode 1: Anthony Rapp
The new national tour of RENT kicked off on January 6, 2009 in Cleveland, Ohio and runs through August 30, 2009 in Tokyo, Japan. Justin Johnston portrays 'Angel' in the tour, a role he essayed on Broadway for over 7 years right up to the musical's final performance and recreated for the Sony Pictures release 'RENT: Filmed Live On Broadway' which will soon be available on DVD and Blu-ray.
Justin grabbed the BroadwayWorld microphone for a series of behind the scenes interviews with the talented cast of RENT, he'll be checking in with BWW during the tour and will be full of surprises, including rehearsal antics, some fun backstage action and exclusive information about the upcoming home video release of 'RENT: Filmed Live On Broadway'! In Episode 1 he brings you Original Broadway Cast member and the actor who some people call the "heart of RENT", Anthony Rapp. Stay tuned for MUCH more 'RENT' CHECK with Justin Johnston only here on BWW TV!
Hailing from Gary, Indiana Justin Johnston grew up wanting to be the next big thing to come out of Gary since Michael Jackson. After his second birthday Justin received the album Thriller from his dad and began dancing and singing just about every single day up to the present. After high school and a brief stint in college Justin landed a role in the musical Rent and toured North America for 10 months. Shortly after, he moved to New York and returned to Rent in the Broadway Company where he played the role of ‘Angel' until the show's final performance on September 7th, 2008.
RENT stars Anthony Rapp as Mark Cohen, Adam Pascal as Roger Davies, Justin Johnston as Angel Schunard, Nicolette Hart as Maureen Johnson, Lexi Lawson as Mimi Marquez, Michael McElroy as Tom Collins, Jacques C. Smith as Benjamin Coffin III and Haneefah Wood as Joanne Jefferson, with Karmine Alers, Toby Blackwell, Adam Halpin, Trisha Jeffrey, Telly Leung, Caren Lyn Manuel, Jed Resnick, Andy Senor, Yuka Takara and John Watson.
Adam Pascal and Anthony Rapp originated the roles of Roger Davis and Mark Cohen at the New York Theatre Workshop, on Broadway, and in London, and recreated their roles in the 2005 movie version of the musical. Pascal and Rapp returned to RENT on Broadway for a limited engagement in the summer of 2007.
Tours of RENT have crisscrossed North America almost continuously since late 1996 grossing over $330 million. The musical has been translated into every major language and been performed on six continents, including in the following countries Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Finland, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.
Written by Jonathan Larson and directed by Michael Greif, RENT, opened at Broadway's Nederlander Theatre, on April 29, 1996 following a history making, sold out, extended limited engagement at off-Broadway's New York Theatre Workshop. The musical went on to win every major best musical award, including the Tony Award, as well as the Pulitzer Prize for drama. RENT is the seventh longest running show in Broadway history.