Darren Criss Kristin Chenoweth Criss also dished about the show’s upcoming special two-part 100th episode, which will see the return of a slew of favorite characters, including Kristin Chenoweth’s April Rhodes, Gwyneth Paltrow’s Holly Holiday, Dianna Agron’s Quinn Fabray, Amber Riley’s Mercedes Jones and more. “We had a great dance rehearsal last week and it was the first time I’d been in the same room as all those people. It was great.” View Comments When word got out that FOX’s hit musical dramedy Glee was moving to the Big Apple for the rest of the fifth season, the only thought that popped into our heads was, “So that means more Darren Criss in NYC, right?” Call us biased, but the City That Never Sleeps should just be nicknamed The City That Needs More Criss. Luckily, our favorite heartthrob opened up about what’s in store for Glee fans, what his long-in-the-works album will sound like and, most importantly, if he’s going to come back to Broadway. Criss told TheBacklot.com that he hopes his Glee co-star Lea Michele’s upcoming debut album Louder is a smash hit because he thinks she’s “a superstar.” As for his own debut album? “Mine will be a little different, it’s a different process,” he said. “I’m the nerdy rock musician who wants to make my nerdy rock and roll so I don’t know if it will be the same fanfare, but I’d like to finish it.” Yet, the How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying alum miiiight just have another plan for 2014… “Or do another stage show or do a movie. I’ll take whatever they give me.” WE’LL GIVE YOU WHATEVER YOU WANT. In an interview with TheBacklot.com, Criss said he’d “love” to shoot Glee in NYC and that he thinks the upcoming move will make a lot of sense for most of the characters—especially for Blaine and Kurt (Chris Colfer). “For Blaine, if he moves to New York…I would assume they’re going to live together,” he said. “Call me crazy, but when you get engaged to somebody usually that’s a good idea. So that will present a whole new structure to their relationship.” Star Files Lea Michele
Show Closed This production ended its run on Aug. 24, 2014 View Comments Liana Hunt will seize the day! The actress is set to replace Kara Lindsay in the Newsies as leading lady Katherine Plumber starting February 3. As previously reported, Lindsay, who originated the role, will play her last performance on February 2. Star Files Related Shows Hunt is currently an ensemble member in Newsies. Her stage credits include Sophie in Mamma Mia! on Broadway as well as the national tour. Other credits include Les Miserables and Beauty and the Beast. Set in New York City at the turn of the century, Newsies follows Jack Kelly (Corey Cott), a charismatic newsboy and leader of a ragged band of teenaged boys, who dreams of a better life far from the hardships of the streets. When publishing titans Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst raise distribution prices at the newsboys’ expense, Jack finds a cause to fight for and rallies newsies from across the city to strike. In addition to Lindsay and Cott, Newsies currently stars John Dossett as Joseph Pulitzer, Ben Fankhauser as Davey and LaVon Fisher-Wilson as Medda and features music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Jack Feldman and a book by Kinky Boots’ Harvey Fierstein. Newsies Kara Lindsay
View Comments Arterton recently appeared in a revival of The Duchess of Malfi. She made her professional stage debut at London’s Globe Theatre in 2007 as Rosaline in Love’s Labour’s Lost. Other London theater credits include The Master Builder and The Little Dog Laughed. Her TV and film credits include Tess of the D’Urbervilles, Quantum of Solace, Prince of Persia: Sands of Time, St Trinian’s, The Disappearance of Alice Creed, Hansel and Gretel and Runner Runner. Bond girl Gemma Arterton is set to star in the stage adaption of Made in Dagenham. According to the Daily Mail ‘s Baz Bamigboye, the musical, directed by Rupert Goold, will open at the West End’s Adelphi Theatre in the fall, after The Bodyguard ends its run. Based on the 2010 film of the same name, Made in Dagenham tells the tale of the female machinists who went on strike in 1968 at the U.K.’s Ford Dagenham car factory demanding equal pay and protesting against sexual discrimination. Arterton will star as Rita, who leads her co-workers to strike.
Singer-songwriter Jessie J began her career in musical theater and she’s impatient to get back to the stage! “I can’t wait to do a musical. It was my first musical love,” the Brit recently wrote on her Facebook page after she visited Broadway’s Book of Mormon. She also posted a clip of her singing her “back inna di day audition song” from Les Miz, “On My Own” on the stage of the Eugene O’Neill, where the hit tuner is currently playing. View Comments The “Domino” diva was nine when she was cast in a lead role in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s West End production of Whistle Down the Wind, the musical he co-wrote with Meat Loaf legend Jim Steinman. (Remember “No Matter What”? That show!). She later joined the U.K.’s prestigious National Music Theatre. Jessie J’s obviously never forgotten her roots. Check her out in all her superstar glory paying tribute to Lloyd Webber, the “first person who ever believed in me” below. We’re thinking a beautiful collaboration could be on the cards…
View Comments Take another little piece of our hearts, Janis! Tickets for the off-Broadway run of A Night with Janis Joplin are now on sale. The Janis tribute, after an acclaimed run on Broadway at the Lyceum Theatre, will play the Gramercy Theatre beginning April 10. A Night with Janis Joplin celebrates the inspirations of one of rock’s greatest legends and takes audiences on a musical journey with Joplin as her unforgettable voice made her a must-see headliner all across the country when she exploded onto the music scene in 1967. The show features many of Joplin’s hit songs, including “Me and Bobby McGee,” “Down on Me,” “Summertime,” “Piece of My Heart,” “Ball ‘n’ Chain,” “Maybe,” “Kozmic Blues,” “Cry Baby” and “Mercedes Benz.” Mary Bridget Davies will reprise her performance as the Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll. Additional casting will be announced soon. The show is written and directed by Randy Johnson. Star Files Mary Bridget Davies
Our New Girl will run through June 29 at Atlantic Stage 2. Opening night is set for June 10. Written by Nancy Harris, Our New Girl opens the door to Hazel Robinson’s (McCann) perfect London home, where nothing is as it seems. Hazel’s plastic surgeon husband Richard (Wilson) has embarked on his latest charitable quest in Haiti, leaving the heavily pregnant Hazel with a failing business and a problem son. When a professional nanny arrives unannounced on the Robinsons’ doorstep, Hazel finds her home under the shadow of a perfect stranger with an agenda of her own. Show Closed This production ended its run on June 29, 2014 View Comments Our New Girl Related Shows The U.S. premiere of Our New Girl starts preview performances on May 28. The Atlantic Theater Company production, directed by Gaye Taylor Upchurch, stars Mary McCann, Lisa Joyce, CJ Wilson and Henry Kelemen.
Look out, because there’s another show coming to Broadway that has magic to do. The Illusionists—Witness the Impossible will astonish the Great White Way with a series of spectacles this fall. The show will dazzle audiences at the Marquis Theatre beginning November 26 and run through January 4, 2015. Opening night is set for December 4. Related Shows The Illusionists has toured internationally, making appearances in Mexico City, London, Dubai and more. The show recently played a sold-out season at the Sydney Opera House. The Illusionists View Comments The Illusionists—Witness the Impossible brings some of the most incredible illusionists on earth to the stage. They thrill, mystify, shock and delight audiences with hilarious magic tricks, death-defying stunts and acts of breathtaking wonder. Show Closed This production ended its run on Jan. 3, 2016
Finding Neverland Have you heard? Emmy winner Kelsey Grammer will join Matthew Morrison on Broadway in the highly anticipated Finding Neverland! As Broadway.com previously reported, the official announcement was made on November 13 on The Today Show by the stage and screen faves themselves. So what got Grammer to return to the Great White Way? “Harvey [Weinstein] is a pretty compelling guy,” he says. Plus, the material, which he says is his “favorite story,” is compelling, emotional and moving: “all the things that theater is supposed to be.” Check out the duo’s announcement below and a photo of the two new stars together, courtesy of Morrison’s Facebook page! The new tuner, which will also star Olivier winner Laura Michelle Kelly, flies into the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre on March 15, 2015. Show Closed This production ended its run on Aug. 21, 2016 View Comments Related Shows
Don’t tell Mama, but Emma Stone is remaining in Cabaret for an extra fortnight! She will now play Sally Bowles opposite Alan Cumming’s Emcee through February 15. Casting for her replacement in the Roundabout Theatre Company production will be announced shortly. Stone is making her Broadway debut in Cabaret. Best known for starring in the Amazing Spider-Man film series, her other screen credits include Magic in the Moonlight, The Croods, Gangster Squad, Easy A, The Help, Crazy, Stupid, Love, Friends with Benefits, Paperman, Marmaduke, Zombieland, Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, The House Bunny, The Rocker, Superbad and the recently released Birdman. Related Shows In addition to Stone and Cumming, the musical currently features Linda Emond as Fraulein Schneider, Danny Burstein as Herr Schultz, Bill Heck as Cliff, Aaron Krohn as Ernst and Hani Furstenberg as Fraulein Kost. Cabaret View Comments Cabaret will play through March 29 at Studio 54. Show Closed This production ended its run on March 29, 2015
View Comments In the corporate world, employees leaving a job are often asked to sit through an “exit interview” with HR about their time at the company. That concept doesn’t exist for Broadway performers, but we love checking in with stars as they finish up a successful run. Lena Hall will conclude her Tony-winning turn as aspiring drag queen Yitzhak in Hedwig and the Angry Inch on April 4, but before she says farewell, she’s sharing the year she spent “shining like the brightest star.”How did you feel when you first got this job?I felt amazing, of course. It was a part I had really wanted, and I knew I would do an awesome job at it. I loved the show previously and was so excited to get to work with Stephen Trask and John Cameron Mitchell, as well as Michael Mayer and Neil Patrick Harris.How do you feel now that you’re leaving?Ever since they announced my replacement [Rebecca Naomi Jones], I’ve been depressed (not because of her, but because it made it real). I love this show and have loved this part so much, so inside there is an overwhelming feeling of sadness, but I must move on and allow my body to repair itself from the damage playing a man has done to it.What are three words you would use to describe your experience at this job?Unbelievably life changing.What was the easiest thing about the job?The people. Everyone has been an utter joy to be with and work with.What was the hardest thing?Playing a dude.What was the highlight of your time at this job?The whole year has been incredible, but nothing can beat Tony morning/afternoon/night/late night.What skills do you think are required for future job applicants?Tambourine and shaker, headbanging, onstage sound technician and props master.What advice would you give to future employees in your job position?Listen to your body and get physical therapy when you need it ASAP.How do you think you’ve grown?I’m a better actor and listener. I’m good at playing percussive instruments while handling flailing mic cords and heavy mic stands. Physically, my body shrank, and from playing a man, my body has become flat as a board—but my head is now massive! (That’s a little joke.)Why are you leaving?My body needs time to repair itself from the physical damage I have done to it. I put 100% of my soul and energy on that stage every night. The wear and tear of all of that headbanging, lifting really heaving mic stands and props and the posture have taken a huge toll. I also see no better way than to finish with the writer himself: John Cameron Mitchell. Though I’m sure I will be seeing this gang again in the near future.What will you miss the most?The people. From the crew to the band to the creatives to the fans and everyone in between. This show seems to bring truly amazing people together. Related Shows Show Closed This production ended its run on Sept. 13, 2015 Hedwig and the Angry Inch