Disney's NEWSIES To Be First Production Back On Stage At Patchogue Theatre!

Disney's Newsies is a musical based on the 1992 motion picture “Newsies” and was inspired by the true story of the Newsboys Stike of 1899.

By: Aug. 11, 2021

Disney's NEWSIES To Be First Production Back On Stage At Patchogue Theatre!

Disney's Newsies, presented by The Gateway, will be the first full-scale professional production at the Patchogue Theatre since shutting down due to the pandemic. It will run from August 25 through September 11th.

Disney's Newsies is a musical based on the 1992 motion picture "Newsies" and was inspired by the true story of the Newsboys Stike of 1899 - the pivotable moment that forced William Randolph Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer to change their view of newsies as sweatshop laborers to human beings looking to make a living. It features a Tony Award-winning score by Alan Menken (Little Shop of Horrors, Sister Act) and Jack Feldman and a book by Tony Award winner, Harvey Fierstein (Kinky Boots). Featuring the now classic songs "Carrying the Banner," "Seize the Day," and "Santa Fe." Newsies is packed with non-stop thrills and a timeless message, perfect for the whole family and every audience.

Set in turn-of-the-century New York City, the show is the rousing tale of Jack Kelly- a charismatic newsboy and leader of a band of teenaged "newsies." When titans of publishing raise distribution prices at the newsboys' expense, Jack rallies newsies from across the city to strike against the unfair conditions and fight for what's right!

Nominated for 16 theatrical awards during its Broadway run, Disney's Newsies won Tonys for best choreography and best musical score. Originally planned to show only 101 times, due to its popularity with audience members, Newsies ended up running for 1,005 performances on the Broadway stage before touring. After touring, the film "Newsies: The Broadway Musical" was released in 2017.

Newsies will star Alex Prakken as Jack Kelly. Mr. Prakken appeared in the Broadway production as Jack and has performed the role many times regionally. Katherine will be played by The Gateway veteran, Molly Rushing. Molly appeared in the title role of The Gateway's 2015 Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella and recently understudied the title role of Broadway's Anastasia.

Other principal roles include Aurelia Williams as Medda (Broadway's Once on this Island and In Transit), David Engel as Pulitzer (Broadway's La Cage aux Folles and in the original Forever Plaid company), Logan Alexander Marks as Davey (RENT National Tour), and Andrew Stevens Purdy as Crutchie.

The Newsies will be played by Rorey Chavarria, Mike D'Amico, Anthony DaSilva, Maurice Dawkins, Steven Etienne, Joshua Keen, Noah Lentini, Dario Natarelli, Jonathan Reyes, Ryan Rodiño, Matthew Sparks, BB Stone, and Tim Webb.

The ensemble is rounded out with Mark Woodard, Timothy Lee, Steve Brady, Hannah Maggie Bergman, Brian Veith, and Steven Isaac Rice. The show will be directed by Larry Raben with choreography by Chaz Wolcott who will be recreating the original Tony Award-winning choreography by Christopher Gattelli.

Larry Raben's previous credits at The Gateway include Murder on the Orient Express, Kinky Boots, Cabaret, Mamma Mia!, Nice Work If You Can Get It (IRNE nomination), Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella (with Peggy Hickey), The Producers, and Sunset Boulevard. He directed the world premiere of Tony winner Joe DiPietro's Falling For Eve Off-Broadway at The York Theatre. He won the LA Ovation Award Best Direction for Singin' In The Rain. Recent credits: Jersey Boys (Phoenix Theatre Company), West Side Story (5- Star), Greater Tuna (Coyote StageWorks), Catch Me If You Can (Musical Theatre West), 7 Brides For 7 Brothers (MTWichita), Buyer & Cellar (Laguna Playhouse), Young Frankenstein (SDMT-Craig Noel-nom), Newsies and Titanic (Moonlight ), Plaid Tidings (Walnut Street Theatre), Tru (CSW), Addams Family and Thoroughly Modern Millie (Performance Riverside), When You Wish- The Story of Walt Disney, Love Makes The World Go Round (Phoenix Theatre Company), Hairspray, The Wedding Singer, Never Gonna Dance and The Thing About Men (MTW), A Christmas Carol, Meet Me In St. Louis and Always Patsy Cline (Welk) and Sweet Charity in Buenos Aires (Ace nomination). He is the Artistic Director of The Welk Resort Theatre.
Chaz Wolcott returns to The Gateway, this time as choreographer, and will be re-staging the original Tony Award-winning work by Christopher Gattelli. Previous directing & choreography credits include Broadway: Red Bucket Follies (New Amsterdam Theatre), Broadway Backwards (Al Hirschfeld Theatre) and Gypsy of the Year and Regional: Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Me and My Girl, Altar Boyz, Kiss Me Kate, Crazy For You & Mary Poppins (Forestburgh Playhouse); Newsies (5x), Cats (2x), Bright Star and La Cage aux Folles.

Christopher Gattelli won the Tony Award for the original Broadway production of Newsies. Other Broadway credits include My Fair Lady, SpongeBob Squarepants, War Paint, Amazing Grace, The King and I, Casa Valentina, Godspell, and Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown.

Musical Direction will be by Andrew Haile Austin. Mr. Austin returns after conducting many shows at The Gateway which include Rock of Ages, RENT, Flashdance the Musical, On Your Feet, and Elf the Musical. James O. Hansen will be the Production Stage Manager. Hansen's credits at The Gateway include Elf the Musical, On Your Feet, As You Like It, Murder on the Orient Express, Flashdance the Musical, and Disney's Beauty and the Beast.

The casting of Disney's Newsies was conducted by The Gateway's Associate Artistic Director, Michael Baker. Mr. Baker has been casting shows and has been the head of The Gateway School for the Performing Arts since 2012.

Disney's Newsies is presented through an arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI) with music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Jack Feldman, book by Harvey Fierstein, and is based on the Disney film written by Bob Tzudiker and Noni White.

The Gateway's 2021 season will continue with dazzling Broadway hits including, A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder (November 17 - December 4 at The Gateway Playhouse, Bellport, NY), and Holiday Spectacular on Ice (December 17 - January 1, 2022, at Patchogue Theatre, Patchogue, NY).

A concert series with Best of the Eagles will play on August 28th and Yellow Brick Road, a tribute to Elton John on August 29th at The Gateway Playhouse, Bellport, NY. This year's Children's Theatre Series includes The Gateway School for the Performing Arts production of The Wizard of Oz (Friday & Saturday, August 6 - 21 at The Gateway Playhouse, Bellport, NY).
Tickets start at $49. Teen prices are available for select shows. For more information, contact the Box Office at (631) 286-1133, or visit the website at TheGateway.org.

The Gateway is requiring all guests to be fully vaccinated for Covid-19 and to provide proof of vaccination to attend. The Gateway is also requiring masks to be worn while inside the theater to ensure the safest environment possible for everyone.