BWW Feature: MARILYN! THE NEW MUSICAL at Paris Las Vegas

BWW Feature: MARILYN! THE NEW MUSICAL at Paris Las Vegas
Photo credit Denise Truscello

"Marilyn! The New Musical" debuted at Paris Las Vegas on Marilyn Monroe's birthday on June 1.

The original musical is based on the life of Marilyn Monroe starring acclaimed Broadway actress Ruby Lewis as Marilyn. The 15 original musical numbers and classic songs "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend" and "My Heart Belongs to Daddy," tells the story about her rise from obscurity as Norma Jeane to become one of the biggest stars as told through the eyes of her driver Charles.

"The original music gives Marilyn a voice that we otherwise would never hear. I feel that many songs are inner turmoil or extreme joy through song. They are all meant to convey how she felt as she was struggling with being the biggest star in the world," Lewis told BroadwayWorld.com.

Many dramatizations have been created about Marilyn Monroe from different points of view. As for creating the role as seen through the eyes of her driver, Lewis focused on the dichotomy. There was Marilyn in front of the camera or public. Then there was the private Marilyn, who dealt with a lot of stresses within her marriages and career. There were also the insecurities and fears that stemmed back to her childhood including alienation and abandonment. When she allowed someone to get close to her, she was close to him or her. These very few people were her protectors, and her driver Charlie is portrayed as one of them.

Portraying an icon gave Lewis a big challenge and is a dream come true. "I take it very seriously and do my very best nightly to pay her due respect and to give her fans a true glimpse into the woman."

The Marilyn! cast includes Brittney Bertier as Norma Jeane; Frank Lawson as Marilyn's trusted driver Charlie, Travis Cloer as Milton Greene, Chris Fore as Bill Pursel, Randal Keith as Darryl F. Zanuck, Christopher Showerman as Joe DiMaggio, Matthew Tyler as Arthur Miller, Lindsay Roginski as Jane Russell, Una Eggerts as Jayne Mansfield, and Chanel Edwards-Frederick as Ella Fitzgerald.

After launching to critical acclaim, "Marilyn! The New Musical" will be going on a summer hiatus from June 19 to Sept. 3 to prepare for a national tour. Performances at Paris Las Vegas will resume Sept. 4.

"Marilyn! The New Musical" performs Tuesday through Sunday (dark Mondays) at 7 p.m. The last performance before its hiatus is June 17. Ticket can be purchased online at Ticketmaster.com/Marilyn.

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From This Author Debbie Hall

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