BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Back row: Matthew Van Colton, Douglas Widick,
Andrew Knox. Front row: Nicole C. Hastings,
Katie Dufrense, Tessa Hersh.
Photo by Jenny Anderson.

Come one, come all to the musical you help create. Just a few blocks north of the heart of Times Square, the vastly talented improv actors, orchestra, and crew of BLANK! THE MUSICAL are treating audiences to the opening and closing night of a musical. (No, they're not reviving the 1988 production of CARRIE.) When you enter New World Stages for BLANK! THE MUSICAL, you'll have no idea what you're in for in the best of possible ways.

The concept is fairly simple and rather straightforward. BLANK! THE MUSICAL's new and original show comes together from audience input every night. You and your fellow theatergoers title the show, title 3 songs, choose the musical motif, vote for which actor or actress will deliver the dramatic and memorable line, and give the musical its signature choreographic style. With the input from the audience, the dexterous and energetic cast of six, the skilled musicians in the pit, and the versatile crew all work together to create an original and rib-tickling musical on the spot. So, unlike other shows that may have the cast create new words to familiar tunes or only have one lighting cue, BLANK! THE MUSICAL features a band that creates music on the fly, a stage manager improving with the cast, and technicians improving on the sound and light boards too. The end result is a splashy new musical that works both technically and artistically.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
T.J. Mannix. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

The audience interacts with the show through the show's protected Wi-Fi in the theater and by using a web app designed by Livecube. Through various prompts, the audience casts votes, types in ideas, and even gets to revisit those arcade days of yore by furiously tapping on the face of a cast member to determine which one has the most ravenous fan club. Leading us through the segment of the show that utilizes the app, T.J. Mannix hypes the crowd with the skill of a veteran game show host and with his own well-tuned sense of humor. Also, if your cell phone or the app decides not to cooperate, T.J. Mannix is prepared and willing to take your input via old-fashioned callouts too.

The cast is made up of seasoned improv pros, and each one makes the audience laugh with ease. In our minds, we know that they are working hard to keep our attention and ensure our sides ache when we leave the theater; however, like true comedy legends, they all make it look effortless. On top of that, they sing and dance. Seriously. They do more than simply hold a tune, and the dancing showcases training and skill. Katie Dufresne, Nicole C. Hastings, Tessa Hersh, Andrew Knox, Matthew Van Colton, and Douglas Widick all bring their A game to the table, which is made all the more clear when you see them gasping for breath between hearty guffaws in the wings as they await their own entrances. I firmly believe if you can make someone whose job it is to be funny bust a gut, then you've got to be doing something better than right.

At the bottom-line BLANK! THE MUSICAL is the best musical you'll both create and see in New York this holiday season. Sure you can see the shows flanking Times Square, and they'll surely impress you and entertain you. But, you didn't help "write" them or "direct" them. That is what makes BLANK! THE MUSICAL so magical; it's truly YOUR musical! Where else can you see the same cast perform EBOLA: THE MUSICAL one night and THAT'S WHAT SHE SAID! THE MUSICAL on another night?

For tickets and more information visit blankthemusical.com. "Like" BLANK! THE MUSICAL on Facebook at facebook.com/blankthemusical. Follow the show on Twitter @blankthemusical and join the discussion using #fillintheblank. See photos and videos on Instagram by following @blankthemusical.

high res photos

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
T.J. Mannix. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
BLANK! THE MUSICAL Band. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Back row: Matthew Van Colton, Douglas Widick, Andrew Knox. Front row: Nicole C. Hastings, Katie Dufrense, Tessa Hersh. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Katie Dufrense & Tessa Hersh. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Back row: Matthew Van Colton, Douglas Widick, Andrew Knox. Front row: Nicole C. Hastings, Katie Dufrense, Tessa Hersh. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Nicole C. Hastings and Andrew Knox with Katie Dufrense looking on. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Cast of BLANK! THE MUSICAL. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Tessa Hersh and Douglas Widick. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Andrew Knox & Matthew Van Colton. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Tessa Hersh, Nicole C. Hastings and Katie Dufrense (standing). Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Andrew Knox & Douglas Widick. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Nicole C. Hastings, Tessa Hersh (seated) and Katie Dufrense. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Tessa Hersh and Matthew Van Colton. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Cast of BLANK! THE MUSICAL. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Tessa Hersh and Douglas Widick with Nicole C. Hastings (seated). Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Couples, Andrew Knox and Katie Dufrense joins Nicole C. Hastings and Matthew Van Colton. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

BWW Reviews: BLANK! THE MUSICAL is Truly Your Musical
Cast of BLANK! THE MUSICAL. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

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From This Author David Clarke

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