The world didn’t end last week, which means we can go on goin’ gaga for the guys of the Great White Way. From a group of dudes going gangsta for Charles Dickens to an openly gay Tony nominee running away from his stalker, here’s our year-end lovefest for the boys of Broadway.
Chita Rivera—rapping? The legendary triple-threat and her cast mates in Broadway’s The Mystery of Edwin Drood bring the goods in “Bustle Fluffah,” an original composition celebrating the joys of the badonkadonk, circa 1800s London. Adam Karl, who plays dashing and devious Neville Landless, wrote the ditty—and packed it with enough tight-girdled action to give anyone a fetish for the Victorian era. And then there’s Chita, who, at 79, can still turn her briefest of appearances into a showstopper.
Even though every aspiring Broadway singer has warbled a tune from Stephen Schwartz’s Pippin, which first hit the Great White Way in 1972, the show has yet to be revived on Broadway in its 40-year-history.
That could change: The buzz is that a production at Cambridge’s American Repertory Theater has audiences so dazzled that Broadway is on the horizon.
Directed by Diane Paulus (Hair, The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess), Pippin 2.0 updates Bob Fosse’s signature moves with modern acrobatics from the Montreal circus act Les 7 Doigts de la Main.
And the cast is, as Pippin would sing, “extraordinary”: Patina Miller (Sister Act) gender-bends the role of the Leading Player, made famous by Ben Vereen; Terrence Mann (the original Rum Tum Tugger in Broadway’s Cats) as Charlemagne; Charlotte d’Amboise (Cassie in the revival of A Chorus Line) as Pippin’s evil stepmother; and the incomparable Andrea Martin doing a star turn as his grandmother.
Who is playing Charlemagne’s soul-searching son? Matthew James Thomas, a young Brit who played Peter Parker in Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark. There’s not much reason for him to be shirtless in the Pippin press photo above, but we’re not complaining! [Associated Press]
MY BEST FRIEND
Out actor Andrew Rannells and Josh Gad do an amusing riff on their Tony-nominated performances in The Book of Mormon in a video promoting their NBC comedies The New Normal and 1600 Penn.” As in Mormon, Gad plays a big, bouncy puppy who desperately seeks approval from the level-headed Rannells. The results are so adorably cute, we’re praying for a Sweeps Week crossover. Maybe Normal‘s David and Bryan win a trip to the White House?