Broadway's Bright Lights

Updated: Nov 18, 2021



We cover the creative decisions and the business calculations, the artful collaborations and the boffo ballyhooing, the gossip columnists and the critics, the stars and the chorus lines, the composers, lyricists, playwrights, directors, designers, and producers.

HERE ARE SOME EXAMPLES:


AIN’T TOO PROUD: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF THE TEMPTATIONS After extremely successful runs in California and at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., this jukebox musical, directed by Des McAnuff with book by Dominique Morisseau is tapping and snapping away Broadway. With Motown tunes and an entertaining story, it follows a classic structure. But choreographer Sergio Trujillo’s reinventions of the Temptations’ dance moves elevate the show to a different level. We talk with Morisseau about how she crafts a compelling narrative around these iconic songs.


MORNING SUN

In Greenwich Village a generation or so ago, the city is alive. Joni Mitchell sings, friends and lovers come and go, and the regulars change at the White Horse Tavern. As 50 years pass, one woman’s life is revealed in all its complexity, in this enthralling world premiere about mothers and daughters, beginnings and endings in New York City. Lila Neugebauer directs the powerhouse trio of stars: Blair Brown, Edie Falco, and Marin Ireland in this new play by Tony winner Simon Stephens (Heisenberg, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time).


HADESTOWN Based on the 2010 folk concept album of the same name by Anais Mitchell, this new musical is a retelling of the Orpheus and Eurydice myth from Greek mythology. The setting has been adapted here to represent a post-apocalyptic world inspired by the Great Depression. After its success as an album, the piece was staged at the New York Theater Workshop. We talk with director Rachel Chavkin about that production and how the musical was reshaped for Broadway where it opened in the Spring of 2019 at the Walter Kerr Theater. Hadestown went on to become only the second show in history with an all-female creative team to win the Tony Award for Best Musical. (The other being Fun Home)


GIRL FROM THE NORTH COUNTRY The acclaimed musical Girl From the North Country is headed uptown. The new show written and directed by Tony-nominated playwright Conor McPherson and featuring the music of Bob Dylan, which played a sold-out run at the Public Theater last fall, will set up shop at the Belasco Theatre beginning on February 7, 2020. Opening night is set for March 5. The show centers on a down-on-its-luck community on the brink of change in 1934 Duluth, Minnesota. The Public Theater engagement followed a sold-out run at London’s Old Vic and a West End transfer. We speak to Jeannette Bayardelle who plays the soulful Mrs. Neilson, about the way she interprets Dylan’s music to fit her own voice.



We’ll use our inside connections to bring you the latest news coming out of Broadway and take you behind the scenes to see this world in all its dynamically diverse aspects.


Indispensables: the making of a Broadway show is a collaborative process. We’ll take you inside and showcase the essential contenders, from wardrobe to stage hands, absent from the spotlight but without whom the show can’t go on. With the different perspectives this detailed and informative feature will provide, you may never look at a theater production the same way again.


Inside scoop: Broadway is the home base for our Hound, and you’ll find Talk of the Hound featured on this page with plenty to say. He’ll sniff around and find the latest scoop, investigating all the rumors floating around 42nd street. From shows in the works, up-and-coming stars and offstage battles, the Hound will report back—and no topic is off grounds.


The Forum: We’ll spark conversation with a currently debated topic giving our readers a venue to voice opinions and ideas. Example: Revivals– Some of Broadway’s greatest shows return again and again. No one production is alike. Sometimes, a revival is a bold new interpretation; at other times, it’s an attempt at mimicking the original’s success. Critics differ. Take Gypsy: Out of the five Broadway productions of Gypsy, which did you see? And which Mama Rose did you like the most and why?