Duncan Sheik gets electronic with American Psycho and goes indie with Spring Awakening movie
Duncan Sheik is still knee-deep in theater projects. The Tony-winning composer is getting ready to mount the first staged production of his new musical The Nightingale this June in San Diego, he’s still polishing away at the musical version of American Psycho, and he’s also trying to get the much-anticipated film version of Spring Awakening off the ground. Yet while the stage calls, Sheik is taking some time to focus on his music career. Sheik is co-headlining a concert tour with Suzanne Vega (most widely known for “Tom’s Diner”), which will play New York’s Highline Ballroom on April 25 and 26. Sheik phoned Stage Rush on the drive to his first rehearsal for the tour to chat about how American Psycho is influencing his next solo album, Spring Awakening going the indie film route, and why he’s wanted to dodge his biggest hit, “Barely Breathing,” for so long.
How did this collaboration with Suzanne Vega come about?
We’ve known each other for a really long time because we’re both practicing Buddhists. We knew each other through those circles and we’d see each other at various places when we’d be touring for our records. For a long time, Suzanne had this idea about writing a show where she would play Carson McCullers and perform these songs that were inspired by her writing. Suzanne’s daughter is a huge fan of Spring Awakening, so Suzanne thought that since I’ve done the theater thing before, she’d call me up. We ended up writing a score for this piece together. She performed it a year ago at the Rattlestick Playwrights Theater and she’s been performing a few of the songs in her concerts since then. So we decided to do this co-headlining tour. Read more
Concert recap: Idina Menzel with Marvin Hamlish and New York Philharmonic at Avery Fisher Hall
It was an evening that would make any performer green. Tony winner Idina Menzel, famed for her emerald-skinned turn as Elphaba in Wicked, made her New York Philharmonic debut Saturday night at Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall. Yet in an environment of elegance and sophistication, Menzel was geeking out over her conductor. Well, in her defense, the conductor was Marvin Hamlisch.
The EGOT winner (30 Rock-speak for someone who has won all four Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony awards) and composer of A Chorus Line and many Barbra Streisand standards was on the receiving end of many gushings from Menzel throughout the concert. At one point, she asked for permission to climb up onto his conductor’s podium so that she may kiss him. Hamlisch obliged, and the embrace evoked a collective “Aww” from the sold-out house.
In addition to her songs, which included musical theater classics and selections from Rent and Wicked, Menzel was in great comedic spirit. Taking long breaks between songs, she told stories of her youth (her family’s most requested song of hers was “The Way We Were”), her life with husband Taye Diggs and 17-month-old son Walker (she and Diggs compose original lullabies and argue over who gets to vocally shine), and of her career (singing for Streisand at the Kennedy Center and being upstaged by Beyonce).
Menzel’s comedy was well received by the Lincoln Center audience, which can typically be an upturned-nose crowd. She embodied a jovial attitude that mixed well with her elegance. Menzel took the stage (barefoot) in an elegant and simple white dress with a thin black belt. Her radiance was a reflection of the night—a special achievement in her career. Read more
Stage Rush TV: Episode 24
Happy birthday to me! Joining me for this special edition of Stage Rush TV are my dear friends Georgina and Kym, along with some other very esteemed guests who open the episode.
- At the Powerhouse Theater at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY to see Michael Mayer’s On A Clear Day You Can See Forever, featuring Brian d’Arcy James and Anika Noni Rose
- When friends and theater combine to make a cherished tradition
- Congratulations to the winners of the Night Music/Promises, Promises ticket giveaway
- Broadway grosses
Do you have any theater traditions with your friends, Rushers? Let me know what it is, and what your special memories are. Have you ever been to Vassar’s Powerhouse Theater? Will you be seeing this concert production of On A Clear Day this weekend, or are you waiting for when it comes to the Vineyard Theatre in January 2011 (or both)? As always, leave your thoughts, ideas, (and birthday wishes) in the comments!
Glee Live plays Radio City Music Hall
The national spotlight that such Broadway veterans as Lea Michele, Matthew Morrison, and Jonathan Groff are receiving due to the hit show Glee makes the news and events of the Fox show a direct interest of Stage Rush and its readers. Rusher and Glee fan Irina Gonzalez attended the Saturday Glee Live concert at New York’s Radio City Music Hall and reported from the fan-crazed scene.
There wasn’t a single warm seat in the house Saturday night—that’s what happens when an entire show becomes a standing ovation. The kids of Glee delivered fun and entertainment in their Glee Live tour, which hit New York this weekend.
Starting off the show was the Legion of Extraordinary Dancers, the dance troupe of cast member Harry Shum Jr. There was a lot of jumping and break dancing for the mostly-male cast, and a huge round of applause as Shum, aka Mike “Other Asian” Chang, came on stage at the end for a “idle shoes” inspired dance sequence which sent the audience to its feet for the first time that night. The LXD ended the show sans Shum to a standing ovation.
After a 30-minute intermission, Jane Lynch came on a screen to welcome the Gleeks to Radio City Music Hall as her alter ego Sue Sylvester. “Hello, suckers!” was her opening line, greeting everyone as “idiots” and having McKinley High cheerleaders pass out “barf bags” through the audience. Matthew Morrison then stepped in to introduce the kids of New Directions as they opened the show with their biggest hit, Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin’”. Read more
2010 Tony Awards: Nominee Predictions
Stage Rush TV: Episode 5
- Duncan Sheik spills details on Spring Awakening movie
- Sheik in concert in South Orange, NJ
- Broadway double-header: rushing A Little Night Music and The Miracle Worker
- Broadway grosses
Duncan Sheik: Original Broadway cast will not reprise roles in ‘Spring Awakening’ film
‘Glee’ concert tour: What is it with Lea Michele and May 18?
Tony Awards announce first-ever student rush, aka. The Ultimate Rush
Get your game faces on, Rushers—your ultimate challenge has arrived. The Tony Awards has announced that for the first time ever, student rush tickets will be offered for the ceremony.
(Have you recovered yet? Well do so, because you’ve got a tough road ahead of you.)
When examining the details of this rush, all I see in my head is Mario struggling to hurdle over all the obstacles in the final, most difficult level of Donkey Kong. This rush is like jumping through fire and water, and then battling the most fearsome video game BOSS. This is The Ultimate Rush.
- The first 200 people in line will be eligible.
- They then must enter their names into a ticket lottery. This is a double rush!
Have you ever tried to play a ticket lotto with 200 people? My guess is that 50 tickets will be given away. A hundred seems like too much—that would make the odds 50/50 and that just sounds too good to be true. In addition, most people will definitely be signing up for two tickets (yes, each winner is entitled up to two tickets), so that will cut the number of names drawn down to about 25. And what time should you arrive? Is 3 a.m. even too late? Honestly, I’m thinking midnight/1 a.m. (shudders). But for Jonathan Groff and Lea Michele’s final performance in Spring Awakening, student rushers started lining up at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre during the performance the night before! This one’s a tough call, but I’ll be shooting for 1 a.m.
Here are the rest of the details about The Ultimate Rush:
- WHERE: The Broadway Concierge & Ticket Center, 1560 Broadway, between 46 and 47 Sts.
- WHEN: When you arrive is up to you. First 200 in line will enter their names into the lotto at 11 a.m. The lotto drawing will take place at 3 p.m. Tony nominee Constantine Maroulis from Rock of Ages and fellow cast member James Carpinello will conduct the drawing.
- HOW MUCH: $40 per ticket (cash only), up to two tickets per lotto winner.
- WHAT TO WEAR: Well, if you’re a winner, you must have black-tie attire for the Tony Awards ceremony.
That’s it, Rushers. The Ultimate Rush awaits you. Check back here at Stage Rush for full coverage of the Tony rush (I will be doing it. And it is supposed to rain. all. night.). May the best Rushers win!
The fall of ‘Spring’ rush
It’s not often that one gets to travel back in time, but thanks to Google (what can’t it do?) I have done just that, and re-witnessed one of the great eras in Broadway rush history.
During a short bout of procrastination, I was fooling around on Google Maps, using the “street view” function. Since it’s way too cold to take an actual walk through Times Square, I thought it’d be pleasant to go for a virtual stroll instead. While I was “there,” I was looking for clues to discover around what time the photography of the area was taken. Warner Bros. owns the billboard space that hangs above 7th Ave and W 47th St., and that space always advertises the company’s current major release. Low and behold, it was The Brave One, which was released in September 2007. My mind immediately jumped to Spring Awakening, which recently (and sadly) closed on Broadway. I thought, Wouldn’t it be nice to see the old marquee once again?
I decided to “walk” over to the Eugene O’Neil Theatre on 49th St. Once I “arrived,” what did I find there but… the student rush line!! Which means the photographs were taken in the morning, since rush tickets went on sale when the box office opened.
It was nostaligc to see the Spring Awakening student rush line, since I’d rushed the show 11 times (seen the show 18 times though). Spring Awakening‘s rush policy was not only one of the best offered (tickets were always available, and ususally in the first few rows, extreme right and left), but it was also one of the most popular.
It’s also special to see the original posters, featuring original stars John Gallagher Jr., Jonathan Groff, and Lea Michele (before they were later replaced by Blake Bashoff, Kyle Riabko, and Alexandra Socha).
Thus concludes today’s lesson in Broadway rush history.