Spring Road Conference kicks off with Jon Stewart, Denzel Washington and ALADDIN!

Times Square!

Times Square!

We have arrived in New York for the 2014 Spring Road Conference, hosted by The Broadway League!

For the next three days, we’ll spend our days at Broadway-related panels and workshops and creative conversations, and our evenings seeing the best that the Great White Way has to offer. We hope to bring some of these shows to Bass Hall in the near future!

Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, the conference kicked off Monday with education panels and an awards show in which Broadway houses across the country were honored for various achievements in their respective fields. During the awards ceremony, Sutton Foster led the cast of her current show, VIOLET, through a rousing performance.

The conference kicked into high gear on Tuesday, when The Daily Show host Jon Stewart treated us a short and sweet love letter.

“What you’ve done for the past 25 years has changed the industry for the better,” he said. “I can’t wait to see what you do in the next 25.”

Colorful Wichita Falls native and nine-time Tony Award winner Tommy Tune also made an appearance. But the most applause went to the cast and creative teams of A RAISIN THE IN SUN (featuring none other than Denzel Washington) and ALADDIN. One of the perks of attending this conference is to hear behind-the-scenes stories; both teams had plenty of stories of frustrations and triumphs to share.

We spent our lunch hour getting better acquainted with ALADDIN. Backed by a full orchestra, the cast performed a five-song mini-set at the Eddison Theatre. Among the highlights: Lead cast members Adam Jacobs and Courtney Reed delivered an amazing rendition of “A Million Miles Away.”

Aladdin cast members Adam Jacobs (left) and Courtney Reed treated conference attendees to a lunchtime performance.

Aladdin cast members Adam Jacobs (left) and Courtney Reed treated conference attendees to a lunchtime performance.

ALADDIN is on our must-see list this week, along with ONCE, PIPPIN, ROCKY, BEAUTIFUL and many, many others. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram at @basshall for updates!

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