Exclusive Podcast: BROADWAY'S BACKBONE Goes In Depth on Race in Theatre
BroadwayWorld will be bringing you new episodes of Broadway's Backbone- a podcast dedicated to the men and woman of the ensemble: the chorus of dancers, singers, and actors that are the foundation of every Broadway musical. These often-unsung gypsies are the hardest working people on the boards and are Broadway's backbone. Each episode features an interview with a Broadway vet, in which they speak about their life, career and dreams, and the topics that aren't always shared. The life of a gypsy maybe full of passion, but not always filled with glamour. Each guest shares intimate details about their journey. There is no mud slinging, but expect a little dirt. The podcast is in honor of the folks of the ensemble and the people who plan to be them.
In this episode: Part 2 of the topic of race in theatre and the whitewashing on the professional stage: a look from behind the table. Special guests San Diego Old Globe's Associate Artistic Director Eric Keen-Louie and resident director James Vasquez. San Diego's Old Globe Theatre is leading the way for regional theatres in having inclusion and diversity as one of their main priorities. In this podcast it is discussed that recognizing diversity onstage has to go hand in hand with reaching minorities offstage. It is very important for people of all races to see themselves on stage, but if they can't get into the audition room and they aren't invited inside the audience, this will never happen. There is much more due diligence being put into the creative process than people realize, but in order for that to evolve there must be feathers ruffled, agendas not blatantly pushed and we all must have brave messy conversations.
Broadway Backbone is hosted by Brad Bradley, who made his Broadway debut in the original cast of "Steel Pier" and followed that with "Annie Get Your Gun", "Thou Shalt Not" "Spamalot", "People in the Picture", "Billy Elliot", and "Chita: A Legendary Celebration." Brad got the idea for the podcast during a conversation he had with Chita Rivera as they were sitting on the dock in Cherry Grove, Fire Island talking shop. She told him that everyone should go through the chorus. It's where dues are paid, the craft is refined, and discipline is born. The seed was planted.
Past podcast guests have included: Ryan Steele (Newsies, Peter Pan LIVE), Neil Haskell (Hamilton, So You Think You Can Dance), Lisa Gajda (Tuck Everlasting), Peter Gregus (Jersey Boys), Angie Schworer (Something Rotten), Charlie Sutton (An American in Paris), Dennis Stowe (Aladdin), Cleve and Donna Marie Asbury (Chicago), Jeremy Davis(Hail, Caesar), Jen Cody (Urinetown), and Tara Rubin (Tara Rubin Casting). The podcast can be found at www.Broadwaysbackbone.com, and soon on iTunes.