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Wake Up With BWW 3/12: Gizel Jimenez Begins Performances in WICKED, and More!

Good morning, BroadwayWorld! Take a moment, grab your coffee, and catch up on the latest Broadway news!

First, we'd like to wish broken legs to Gizel Jiménez, who begins performances in Wicked tonight! Jiménez will assume the role of Nessarose beginning today. She takes over for Kristen Martin who played her final performance on Sunday, March 10.

John Mulaney hosting the Tonys? Now that's something we can get behind! The comedian/actor has revealed that it's something he would be interested in, as well as writing a Broadway musical.

We've got your first look at the Chita Rivera and Liza Minnelli characters in the upcoming series, Fosse/Verdon! Check out photos of these icons, and many more, in the photo set below!

Read more about these stories and more by scrolling down! Want our morning reports delivered via email? Subscribe here!

Wake Up With BWW 3/12: Gizel Jimenez Begins Performances in WICKED, and More!
1) Wake Up With BWW 3/12: Gizel Jimenez Begins Performances in WICKED, and More! Review Roundup: Critics Weigh in on DIANA at La Jolla Playhouse

The new Broadway-bound musical, DIANA, celebrated its official opening this past weekend at the La Jolla Playhouse in San Diego! Let's see what the critics had to say!. (more...)


2) Wake Up With BWW 3/12: Gizel Jimenez Begins Performances in WICKED, and More! John Mulaney Wants to Write a Broadway Musical and Host the Tonys
by TV News Desk

During an interview with Vulture, John Mulaney discussed his return to SNL, which featured the follow-up musical sketch to the famous 'Diner Lobster,' which was a 'Les Miserables' song parody sketch. The sequel sketch, 'Bodega Bathroom' featured musical spoofs of songs from 'Rent', 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory', to name a few. Mulaney also recently starred in the 'Company' parody episode of 'Documentary Now!'. (more...)


3) Wake Up With BWW 3/12: Gizel Jimenez Begins Performances in WICKED, and More! FOSSE/VERDON Shares First Look at Chita Rivera, Liza Minnelli Characters
by TV News Desk

With the highly anticipated premiere of FOSSE/VERDON less than a month away, FX has shared a first look glimpse at a characters featured in the series. Below are the images of Bianca Marroquin as Chita Rivera, Kelli Barrett as Liza Minnelli, Susan Misner as Joan McCracken, and Paul Reiser as Cy Feuer. . (more...)


4) Wake Up With BWW 3/12: Gizel Jimenez Begins Performances in WICKED, and More! Quentin Earl Darrington, Sasha Allen, Jeremy Hays, and More Will Lead a Reading of New Musical MANDELA

A private, invitation only industry reading of the new musical Mandela will be held on Thursday, March 14 and Friday, March 15, 2019. Mandela has music and lyrics by two South African composer/lyricists signed to Sony/ATV Music Publishing, Greg Dean Borowsky and Shaun Borowsky, with a book by Laiona Michelle (Little Girl Blue: The Nina Simone Musical). This reading is directed by Schele Williams (Rent, Motown: The Musical), with music direction by Alvin Hough, Jr. (Once On This Island). Fifth Estate Entertainment (Nathan Gehan/Jamison Scott) serves as general manager for the reading. The reading will be attended by Nandi Mandela, Nelson Mandela's granddaughter, on behalf of the Mandela family who have officially partnered with the show.. (more...)


5) Wake Up With BWW 3/12: Gizel Jimenez Begins Performances in WICKED, and More! Photo Coverage: C-c-c-come On and Chill Out with the Cast of BE MORE CHILL on Opening Night!
by Jennifer Broski

Michael did not spend this party in the bathroom. Just last night the company of the cult hit Be More Chill, featuring music and lyrics by Joe Iconis, a book byJoe Tracz , direction by Stephen Brackett and choreography by Chase Brock, celebrated opening night on Broadway. We're taking you inside the festivities below!. (more...)


Wake Up With BWW 3/12: Gizel Jimenez Begins Performances in WICKED, and More!
Next up in our "mug shots" series is Lena Hall
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Today's Call Sheet:

Gizel Jiménez begins performances in Wicked tonight!

Jiménez will assume the role of Nessarose beginning today. She takes over for Kristen Martin who played her final performance on Sunday, March 10.

Also recently added to the cast was Michael McCormick as The Wizard on February 18.

They join a cast which currently includes Jessica Vosk as Elphaba, Katie Rose Clarke as Glinda, Nancy Opel as Madame Morrible, Ryan McCartan as Fiyero, Jamie Jackson as Doctor Dillamond, and Jesse JP Johnson as Boq.

Ain't No Mo' begins previews at The Public tonight!

The Public presents the world premiere of Ain't No Mo', written by Jordan E. Cooper and directed by Stevie Walker-Webb. The complete cast features Jordan E. Cooper (Peaches), Marchánt Davis (Passenger 2), Jennean Farmer (Female Understudy), Fedna Jacquet (Passenger 1), Crystal Lucas-Perry (Passenger 5),Ebony Marshall-Oliver (Passenger 4), and Simone Recasner (Passenger 3). Hermon Whaley Jr. will be the standby for "Peaches" and will be performing on all Sunday matinees.

Ain't No Mo' is a vibrant satirical odyssey portraying the great exodus of black Americans out of a country plagued with injustice. In a kaleidoscope of scenes of the moments before, during, and after this outrageous departure, Jordan E. Cooper's extraordinary new work explores the value of black lives in a country hurtling away from the promise of a black president.


BWW Exclusive: How [title of show] Became Part of It All

Wake Up With BWW 3/12: Gizel Jimenez Begins Performances in WICKED, and More!

They might have started as nine people's favorite thing, but in the thirteen years since [title of show]'s debut off-Broadway, far more fans have joined the party.

The beloved fan favorite and critically acclaimed musical was once again heard on Broadway in a reunion concert last night, March 11, 2019 at 7:30 pm at The Broadhurst Theatre (235 W 44th Street, NYC). This one-night only reunion starred original cast members Hunter Bell, Susan Blackwell, Heidi Blickenstaff and Jeff Bowen along with musical director Larry Pressgrove.

How did the show become such a cult classic? Hunter, Jeff, Susan, Heidi and Michael sat down with BroadwayWorld's Richard Ridge last week for an exclusive interview looking back on how they made the beloved, original musical.

Read and watch more here!


Set Your DVR...

-Christine Baranski will appear on LIVE WITH KELLY AND RYAN this morning!

-Andrew Rannells will appear on both GOOD MORNING AMERICA and THE LATE SHOW WITH Stephen Colbert today!


What we're watching: First Look At Alice Ripley, Ali Ewoldt, Constantine Maroulis, Melissa Errico And More In INTO THE WOODS In Concert At Patchogue Theatre

Into The Woods: In Concert opened this weekend at Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts. Check out the all-star cast in action!

Alice Ripley plays the role of The Witch. She stars alongside American Idol's Constantine Maroulis as Prince Charming/The Wolf, Melissa Errico as The Baker's Wife, Ayla Schwartz(Disney's Frozen The Broadway Musical) as Little Red Riding Hood, and Ali Ewoldt (The Phantom of the Opera) as Cinderella, along with longtime Sesame Street actor Alan Muraoka (Broadway's Aladdin, The King and I, Miss Saigon) as Narrator/The Mysterious Man), Darren Ritchie (Broadway's Les Misérables, Little Shop of Horrors, Thoroughly Modern Millie, and more) as Rapunzel's Prince, Jim Stanek as The Baker, and Tyler Jones(Book of Mormon tour) as Jack.

Non-Equity cast members include: Alexandra Imbrosci-Viera as a Step Sister; Megan Gallagher as a Step Sister; Julia Bain as the Step Mother; Jonathan Fluck as the Cinderella's Father; Amy Jane Finnerty as Jack's Mother; James Schultz as the Steward; and Madison Wyatt as Rapunzel.


Social Butterfly: Nathan Lane Invites Audiences To GARY: A SEQUEL TO TITUS ANDRONICUS On Broadway

Tony Award-winner Nathan Lane personally invites you to the Broadway premiere of Taylor Mac's Gary: A Sequel To Titus Andronicus. Check out Nathan's invite and a quick behind the scenes look at rehearsals!

Starring three-time Tony Award winner Nathan Lane and directed by five-time Tony Award winner George C. Wolfe, Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus also stars Tony Award nominee Kristine Nielsen and Tony Award winner Julie White.


And a Happy Birthday shout-out to Liza Minnelli, who turns 73 today!

Wake Up With BWW 3/12: Gizel Jimenez Begins Performances in WICKED, and More!

With a career spanning six decades, Liza Minnelli has reached legendary status in multiple fields of entertainment and is among a small group of entertainers who have been honored with an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony Award. She is considered both an American icon and a gay icon.

In 1965 she made her Broadway debut in the musical Flora the Red Menace and was awarded the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical, becoming the youngest ever recipient of the award. Critically lauded for her Academy Award nominated dramatic performance in the film The Sterile Cuckoo (1969), she rose to international stardom with the Emmy Award-winning TV special Liza with a Z (1972) and her performance as Sally Bowles in Cabaret (1972), which won her the Academy Award for Best Actress. Other notable film credits have included Golden Globe Award nominated performances in Lucky Lady (1975), New York, New York (1977) and Arthur (1981).

She has successfully returned to the Broadway stage on a number of occasions. She won a Special Tony Award in 1974 for her three-week engagement at the Winter Garden Theatre, won her second Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical for her starring role in the 1977 musical The Act, was Tony-nominated for her performance for the 1984 musical The Rink, and won the 2009 Tony Award for Best Special Theatrical Event for her show Liza's at The Palace.

From the late 1970s onwards, Minnelli's work has predominantly focused on concert tours and nightclub performances. She gave highly regarded performances at Carnegie Hall in 1979 and 1987, and at Radio City Music Hall in 1991 and 1992. In the late 1980s she toured alongside Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr. in Frank, Liza & Sammy: The Ultimate Event.


See you bright and early tomorrow, BroadwayWorld!



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From This Author Stephi Wild