This is not a typo! Book of ‘Moron’ coming to Bass Hall’s McDavid Studio!

874651_da2cf6dacfb501b3f040cf6434a0e107.jpg

Robert Dubac will debut his new show, THE BOOK OF MORON, in Fort Worth at McDavid Studio July 27-31. 

This is not an auto-correct fail! There really is a show called THE BOOK OF MORON and it’s coming to Bass Hall’s McDavid Studio July 27-31!

THE BOOK OF MORON is creator Robert Dubac’s follow-up to his critically-acclaimed one-man-show, THE MALE INTELLECT: AN OXYMORON?, which played at McDavid Studio in 2015.

Likewise, THE BOOK OF MORON is receiving critical kudos. The New York Times raved: “Riding shotgun with intelligence and absurdity, THE BOOK OF MORON crashes head first into the barriers of sex, race, religion, politics and the media. It may be offensive to some but there’s laughter for all!”

Robert Dubac belongs to a unique breed of humorists, bringing to mind the best of Lily Tomlin and Mark Twain. He creates characters that boggle our minds with biting wit and rapid-fire satire while simultaneously crafting a simple story that binds us all together.

His ability to combine the raucous laughter of stand-up comedy with the thrill of live theater continues to fill seats everywhere.

In THE BOOK OF MORON, Dubac portrays ROBERT, an everyman who has lost sight of the bigger picture. He’s been bombarded by so much hype and spin he can’t remember who he is or what he believes. Does he have a purpose? Can he think for himself? Is the truth in the details or in the pudding? He hasn’t a clue. He racks his brain searching for answers but finds nothing but voices.

It’s all for one and one for all as ROBERT’S inner voices take him on a freight train of provocative thought to find the bigger picture and wake up from the coma of modern day life.

McDavid Studio is at 301 E. 5th St., adjacent to Bass Performance Hall.

Tickets are $30-$40 and are on sale now! To charge tickets by phone, call 817-212-4280 in Fort Worth; 1-877-212-4280 (toll free) outside Fort Worth; or order online at http://www.basshall.com. Tickets are also available at the Bass Performance Hall ticket office at 525 Commerce Street. For group sales, call 817-212-4248.

Native North Texan returns home in 42nd STREET!

377912_51ffac464ace40f98d324baf3d6162f1.jpg

Sarah Fagan

Hi! It’s Sarah Fagan here, ensemble member of the national tour of 42nd Street, coming to Bass Performance Hall this week. I’m happy to share some of the experiences I’ve had on tour and get y’all excited to see our show!

While you may see me claim to live at 333 Park Avenue in New York as my character Diane Lorimer, I’m from Arlington, Texas! I am lucky to have a supportive family who took me to see theatre at the Bass Performance Hall from a young age.

In fact, my grandparents took me to see 42nd Street at the Bass Hall years ago, so I am thrilled to get to perform the same show for them all these years later on the same stage!

We started rehearsing 42nd Street in New York back in August, and have been touring the country since September. Fort Worth will be our 64th city on this 65 city tour!

We’ve seen sights including Mount Rushmore, Yosemite National Park, the Liberty Bell and Niagara Falls. We’ve performed in such exciting cities as Chicago and Los Angeles. Even so, nothing compares to the excitement I have to finally be back home performing in Fort Worth!

12045269_10156127921530440_4535025048012487363_o.jpg

The ladies of 42nd Street strike a pose in front of Mount Rushmore! 

The best part of being an ensemble member is the amount and variety of dancing we get to do. There’s tons of tap dancing of course, but there’s also ballet, ballroom, jazz, and even a few showgirl kick lines. And for every dance, there’s a different gorgeous costume. I have 11 costumes, six pairs of shoes and two wigs!

12002791_10206178504435929_2228310690902779320_n.jpg

That’s me on the left with my friend Kahila Davis in the iconic costumes from “We’re in the Money.” 

One of the hardest parts of tour is being away from home. That is made easier when you have a little bit of home with you! Three other Texans travel alongside me, including Matthew J. Taylor, who plays director Julian Marsh, and Caitlin Ehlinger, who stars as Peggy Sawyer. Mandy Modic, fellow DFW native and ensemble member, happens to be my roommate! We bonded fast and I can’t imagine tour life without her!

Touring with 42nd Street has been a dream come true. It is an honor to perform this iconic choreography by Randy Skinner and share the story of this heartwarming backstage musical co-written by our director Mark Bramble. Our spectacle of a show is sure to wow Fort Worth! Come meet our dancing feet!

377912_a9df4f49ac8843558990010fb928901c-mv1.jpg

That’s me in the middle starring in 42nd Street as Diane. Photo by Christian Dionne. 

 

 

The 2016-2017 Broadway at the Bass season is here!

607x442.jpg

Performing Arts Fort Worth proudly announces its 2016-2017 Broadway at the Bass Season at Bass Performance Hall! Season ticket packages are on sale NOW! 

The season is made up of eight shows, six of which are making their Bass Hall debuts.
“For the first time ever, we’re offering eight shows, many of which have never played in Fort Worth before,” says Dione Kennedy, President & CEO of Performing Arts Fort Worth. “And as we always strive to do, we’ve put together a season that offers something for everyone, from families to serious Broadway buffs to everyone in between. It’s really a dynamite season.”

Kicking off the season in January, 2017, will be the family favorite ANNIE, returning to the Hall in an all-new production. The Chicago Tribune called the show “one of the best family musicals ever penned.”

The series will close in November, 2017, with another show back by popular demand, IRVING BERLIN’S WHITE CHRISTMAS.

In between will be the direct-from-Broadway AN AMERICAN IN PARIS, the acclaimed, Tony Award-winning musical about love and mystery in the City of Lights; the ultimate tribute to The Beatles, LET IT BE; MATILDA, based on the beloved novel by Roald Dahl and winner of 50 international awards, including four Tonys; THE BODYGUARD, a musical retelling of the hit 1992 film featuring singer Deborah Cox; BEAUTIFUL: THE CAROLE KING MUSICAL, which tells the inspiring true story of King’s remarkable rise to stardom; and the 20th anniversary tour of the Broadway sensation RENT.

In addition, there will be three add-on specials: RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER, CIRQUE DREAMS HOLIDAZE and, returning to the Bass Hall stage, GREATER TUNA.

Performing Arts Fort Worth will once again co-present several of the shows with Dallas Summer Musicals: AN AMERICAN IN PARIS, LET IT BE, THE BODYGUARD and RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER.

These shows will play both venues, allowing Broadway lovers across the North Texas area ample opportunities to experience the Best of Broadway.

Dallas Summer Musicals’ 2016-2017 Broadway season also includes BROADWAY CHRISTMAS WONDERLAND; CHEERS LIVE ON STAGE; STOMP; THE ILLUSTIONISTS; KINKY BOOTS; and CIRCUS 1903: THE GOLDEN AGE OF CIRCUS.

Broadway at the Bass

 

Annie

Heidi Gray stars in ANNIE, coming to Bass Hall January, 2017. Photo:

ANNIE (January 17-22, 2017)
The world’s best-loved musical returns in time-honored form. Directed by original lyricist and director Martin Charnin and choreographed by Liza Gennaro, this production of ANNIE will be a brand new incarnation of the iconic original. Featuring book and score by Tony Award®-winners Thomas Meehan, Charles Strouse and Martin Charnin, ANNIE includes such unforgettable songs as “It’s the Hard Knock Life,” “Easy Street,” “I Don’t Need Anything But You,” plus the eternal anthem of optimism, “Tomorrow.”

AAIP-2205

AN AMERICAN IN PARIS’ first national tour will make a stop at Bass Hall Feb. 14-19, 2017. Photo: Matthew Murphy.

AN AMERICAN IN PARIS (February 14-19, 2017)
AN AMERICAN IN PARIS is the new Tony Award®-winning musical about an American soldier, a mysterious French girl, and an indomitable European city, each yearning for a new beginning in the aftermath of war. Acclaimed director/choreographer and 2015 Tony Award®-winner Christopher Wheeldon brings the magic and romance of Paris into perfect harmony with unforgettable songs from George and Ira Gershwin in the show that earned more awards than any other musical in the 2015 season! The New York Times raves, “AN AMERICAN IN PARIS is a triumph! Pure joy!” Don’t miss this stunning Broadway hit when it arrives in Fort Worth on its first national tour!

HDN-1-2261-Photo-Paul-Coltas

The ultimate tribute to The Beatles, LET IT BE makes its Bass Hall debut March, 2017. Photo: Paul Coltas.

LET IT BE (March 21-26, 2017)
The end of The Beatles era was never thought to be in sight when The Beatles played their last show on the roof of Apple Offices in 1969. Imagine what would have been if The Beatles continued their journey. Enter a time capsule and turn back in time to what would have been John Lennon’s 40th Birthday – October 9, 1980. For one night, the fab four come together again on stage after a decade apart, performing hits like Back in the USSR, Live and Let Die, Got to Get You Into My Life, My Sweet Lord, Hey Jude and many more hits The Beatles never performed live. Imagine a night that never happened!

Matilda

Matilda arrives at Bass Hall June 13-18, 2017. Photo: Joan Marcus.

MATILDA (June 13-18, 2017)
TIME magazine’s No. 1 show of the year! Winner of 50 international awards, including four Tony Awards®, MATILDA THE MUSICAL is the story of an extraordinary girl who, armed with a vivid imagination and a sharp mind, dares to take a stand and change her own destiny. Based on the beloved novel by Roald Dahl, MATILDA continues to thrill sold-out audiences of all ages on Broadway, in London’s West End, and in Sydney, Australia. The Wall Street Journal says, “The makers of MATILDA have done the impossible – triumphantly! It is smart, sweet, zany and stupendous fun.”

Deborah CoxDeborah Cox Deborah Cox

Deborah Cox stars in THE BODYGUARD, coming to Bass Hall August, 2017.

THE BODYGUARD (August 1-6, 2017)
Based on the smash-hit film, the award-winning musical will star Grammy® Award-nominee and R&B superstar DEBORAH COX! A breathtakingly romantic thriller, THE BODYGUARD features a host of irresistible classics including “Queen of the Night,” “So Emotional,” “One Moment in Time,” “Saving All My Love,” “Run to You,” “I Have Nothing,” “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” and one of the biggest selling songs of all time, “I Will Always Love You.” Based on Lawrence Kasdan’s Oscar-nominated Warner Bros. film and adapted by Academy Award-winner Alexander Dinelaris, THE BODYGUARD had its world premiere in London’s West End, where it was nominated for four Laurence Olivier Awards, including Best New Musical; it won Best New Musical at the Whatsonstage Awards.

a - Carnegie Hall

Abby Mueller portrays Carole King in BEAUTIFUL, coming to Bass Hall Sept. 12-17, 2017. Photo: Joan Marcus.

BEAUTIFUL – THE CAROLE KING MUSICAL (September 12-17, 2017)
BEAUTIFUL – The Carole King Musical tells the inspiring true story of King’s remarkable rise to stardom, from being part of a hit songwriting team with her husband Gerry Goffin, to her relationship with fellow writers and best friends Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann, to becoming one of the most successful solo acts in popular music history. Along the way, she made more than beautiful music, she wrote the soundtrack to a generation. Featuring a stunning collection of beloved songs written by Gerry Goffin/Carole King and Barry Mann/Cynthia Weil, including “I Feel The Earth Move,” “One Fine Day,” “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” “You’ve Got A Friend” and the title song, BEAUTIFUL took home two 2014 Tony® Awards and the 2015 Grammy® for Best Musical Theater Album.

1462556356_h_RENT largeweb

The 20th anniversary tour of RENT is coming to Bass Hall Oct. 17-22, 2017.

RENT (October 17-22, 2017)
In 1996, an original rock musical by a little-known composer opened on Broadway and forever changed the landscape of American theatre. Two decades later, Jonathan Larson’s RENT continues to speak loudly and defiantly to audiences across generations and all over the world. And now, this Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award®-winning masterpiece returns to the stage in a vibrant 20th anniversary touring production. A re-imagining of Puccini’s La Bohème, RENT follows an unforgettable year in the lives of seven artists struggling to follow their dreams without selling out. With its inspiring message of joy and hope in the face of fear, this timeless celebration of friendship and creativity reminds us to measure our lives with the only thing that truly matters: love.

9_Skaters

WHITE CHRISTMAS returns to Bass Hall Nov. 14-19, 2017! Photo: Kevin White.

IRVING BERLIN’S WHITE CHRISTMAS (November 14-19, 2017)
This holiday season, discover the perfect gift for everyone on your list! Start with a timeless tale of joy and good will, fill it with classic Irving Berlin songs and top it off with glorious dancing and lots of snow! The New York Times says to “put it on your wish list.” IRVING BERLIN’S WHITE CHRISTMAS tells the story of a song-and-dance team putting on a show in a magical Vermont inn and falling for a stunning sister act in the process. This must-see show is full of dancing, laughter and some of the greatest songs ever written! Give everyone the gift they’re dreaming of with this merry and bright holiday musical.

Broadway Specials/Add On’s

RUDOLPH-72RUDOLF THE RED-NOSED REINDEER: THE MUSICAL (November 22-23, 2016)
The beloved TV classic RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER soars off the screen and back onto Bass Hall’s stage this holiday season. See all of your favorite characters come to life in RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER: THE MUSICAL

Reindeer Soaring

One part Christmas show, one part death-defying Cirque performance, CIRQUE DREAMS HOLIDAZE visits Bass Hall in December.

CIRQUE DREAMS HOLIDAZE (December 3-4, 2016)
Cirque Dreams lights up the 2016 holiday season with its critically acclaimed holiday stage extravaganza, Cirque Dreams Holidaze. It’s a new cirque show, Broadway musical and family Christmas spectacular all in one! The New York Daily News calls it a “delicious confection of charm, sparkle and talent by the sleighload!” Be amazed by this holiday spectacle with over 300 costumes, 20 acts and 30 artists from every corner of the globe.

Great Tuna Art

GREATER TUNA (March 29-30, 2017)
GREATER TUNA is a hilarious and irreverent comedy about Texas’ third smallest town, where the Lion’s Club is too liberal and Patsy Cline never dies. The eclectic band of Tuna citizens – men, women, children, and animals alike – are portrayed by ONLY 2 performers, making this satire on life in rural America both crazy and delightful. Called “a good ol’ down-home laugh-out-loud fest,” by DC Metro Theater Arts, GREATER TUNA has enjoyed worldwide success, including long-running engagements both on and Off-Broadway, at the White House in Washington, D.C., on Late Night with David Letterman, and as an HBO special. 2 Actors, 20 Characters, 20 million laughs.

Hamilton wins 11 Tony Awards!

635947804098414743-XXX-IMG-HAMILTON-CREDIT-JOAN-1-1-QNCK5FRG-78029476

Hamiton won 11 Tony Awards. Photo: Joan Marcus.

As expected, the runaway hit Hamilton, a hip-hop musical about U.S. Founding Father Alexander Hamilton, won most of the awards for which it was nominated at the 70th annual Tony Awards, held tonight at the Beacon Theater in New York.

Created by and starring Lin-Manuel Miranda, the show took home 11 statues, including Best Musical, Best Original Score and Best Actor in a Leading Role/Musical for Leslie Odom Jr. It was nominated for 16 awards; two of the categories featured multiple Hamilton nominees.

The show, whose Broadway run is sold out until next year, needed to win 13 awards to beat the record for most Tony wins for a musical. The current record-holder, The Producers, won 12 in 2001.

The Humans, a stirring play about family dynamics, was the other big winner of the night. The show won four awards, including Best Play. Completely shut out was the tap dance-driven musical Shuffle Along, nominated for ten awards.

A mass shooting early Sunday at an LGBT nightclub in Orlando, Fla., cast a somber shadow over the event. Many of the stars and performers paid tribute to the victims of the shooting, which has left an estimated 50 dead and dozens of others injured.

“Hate will never win,” said host James Corden. “Together, we have to make sure of that. Tonight’s show stands as a symbol and a celebration of that principle.”

During his acceptance speech for winning Best Score, Lin-Manuel Miranda recited a sonnet that referenced the shooting.

“We chase the melodies that seem to find us until they’re finished songs and start to play,” he said. “When senseless acts of tragedy remind us that nothing here is promised, not one day.”

The complete list of winners of 2016 American Theatre Wing’s Tony Awards:

*** denotes winner

Best Play
Eclipsed
The Father
*** The Humans
King Charles III

Best Musical
Bright Star
*** Hamilton
School of Rock—The Musical
Shuffle Along
Waitress

Best Revival of a Play
Arthur Miller’s The Crucible
*** Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge
Blackbird
Long Day’s Journey Into Night
Noises Off

Best Revival of a Musical
*** The Color Purple
Fiddler on the Roof
She Loves Me
Spring Awakening

Best Book of a Musical
Bright Star
Steve Martin
*** Hamilton
Lin-Manuel Miranda
School of Rock—The Musical
Julian Fellowes
Shuffle Along
George C. Wolfe

Best Original Score (Music and/or Lyrics) Written for the Theatre
Bright Star
Music: Steve Martin and Edie Brickell
Lyrics: Edie Brickell
*** Hamilton
Music & Lyrics: Lin-Manuel Miranda
School of Rock—The Musical
Music: Andrew Lloyd Webber
Lyrics: Glenn Slater
Waitress
Music & Lyrics: Sara Bareilles

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play
Gabriel Byrne, Long Day’s Journey Into Night
Jeff Daniels, Blackbird
*** Frank Langella, The Father
Tim Pigott-Smith, King Charles III
Mark Strong, Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play
*** Jessica Lange, Long Day’s Journey Into Night
Laurie Metcalf, Misery
Lupita Nyong’o, Eclipsed
Sophie Okonedo, Arthur Miller’s The Crucible
Michelle Williams, Blackbird

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical
Alex Brightman, School of Rock—The Musical
Danny Burstein, Fiddler on the Roof
Zachary Levi, She Loves Me
Lin-Manuel Miranda, Hamilton
*** Leslie Odom, Jr., Hamilton

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical
Laura Benanti, She Loves Me
Carmen Cusack, Bright Star
*** Cynthia Erivo, The Color Purple
Jessie Mueller, Waitress
Phillipa Soo, Hamilton

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play
*** Reed Birney, The Humans
Bill Camp, Arthur Miller’s The Crucible
David Furr, Noises Off
Richard Goulding, King Charles III
Michael Shannon, Long Day’s Journey Into Night

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play
Pascale Armand, Eclipsed
Megan Hilty, Noises Off
*** Jayne Houdyshell, The Humans
Andrea Martin, Noises Off
Saycon Sengbloh, Eclipsed

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical
*** Daveed Diggs, Hamilton
Brandon Victor Dixon, Shuffle Along
Christopher Fitzgerald, Waitress
Jonathan Groff, Hamilton
Christopher Jackson, Hamilton

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical
Danielle Brooks, The Color Purple
*** Renée Elise Goldsberry, Hamilton
Jane Krakowski, She Loves Me
Jennifer Simard, Disaster!
Adrienne Warren, Shuffle Along

Best Scenic Design of a Play
Beowulf Boritt, Thérèse Raquin
Christopher Oram, Hughie
Jan Versweyveld, Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge
*** David Zinn, The Humans

Best Scenic Design of a Musical
Es Devlin & Finn Ross, American Psycho
David Korins, Hamilton
Santo Loquasto, Shuffle Along
*** David Rockwell, She Loves Me

Best Costume Design of a Play
Jane Greenwood, Long Day’s Journey Into Night
Michael Krass, Noises Off
*** Clint Ramos, Eclipsed
Tom Scutt, King Charles III

Best Costume Design of a Musical
Gregg Barnes, Tuck Everlasting
Jeff Mahshie, She Loves Me
Ann Roth, Shuffle Along
*** Paul Tazewell, Hamilton

Best Lighting Design of a Play
*** Natasha Katz, Long Day’s Journey Into Night
Justin Townsend, The Humans
Jan Versweyveld, Arthur Miller’s The Crucible
Jan Versweyveld, Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge

Best Lighting Design of a Musical
*** Howell Binkley, Hamilton
Jules Fisher & Peggy Eisenhauer, Shuffle Along
Ben Stanton, Spring Awakening
Justin Townsend, American Psycho

Best Direction of a Play
Rupert Goold, King Charles III
Jonathan Kent, Long Day’s Journey Into Night
Joe Mantello, The Humans
Liesl Tommy, Eclipsed
*** Ivo Van Hove, Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge

Best Direction of a Musical
Michael Arden, Spring Awakening
John Doyle, The Color Purple
Scott Ellis, She Loves Me
*** Thomas Kail, Hamilton
George C. Wolfe, Shuffle Along

Best Choreography
*** Andy Blankenbuehler, Hamilton
Savion Glover, Shuffle Along
Hofesh Shechter, Fiddler on the Roof
Randy Skinner, Dames at Sea
Sergio Trujillo, On Your Feet! The Story of Emilio and Gloria Estefan

Best Orchestrations
August Eriksmoen, Bright Star
Larry Hochman, She Loves Me
*** Alex Lacamoire, Hamilton
Daryl Waters, Shuffle Along

Recipients of Awards and Honors in Non-competitive Categories

Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre
Sheldon Harnick
Marshall W. Mason

Special Tony Award
National Endowment for the Arts
Miles Wilkin

Regional Theatre Tony Award
Paper Mill Playhouse
Millburn, NJ

Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award
Brian Stokes Mitchell

Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theatre
Seth Gelblum
Joan Lader
Sally Ann Parsons

 

 

WIZARD OF OZ cast has followed Yellow Brick Road around the country!

WOZ_2213.jpg

The Wizard of Oz lands at Bass Hall June 7-12! Photo: Daniel A. Swalec. 

CTtPeLCXAAAQqMc

Rachel Womble

Hi y’all! It’s your very own Glinda, Rachel Womble, writing to you from the last leg of the North American tour of The Wizard of Oz!  We may be coming to a close, but in my mind we are just getting to the best part, TEXAS!

Since I’m from the Lone Star State, Texas is the place I have been the most excited to play, but we have been to some pretty amazing locales already.

Travelling to these new cities and seeing the sites is one of the best parts about being on the road. Despite our busy schedule of eight shows a week, we try to find the best of what each city has to offer. Here is a look at some of our adventures!

wiz2

Beaver Tails in Canada! 

Early on in the tour we were fortunate enough to spend three weeks travelling through Canada. In Ottawa, their nation’s capital, we had so much fun playing in the snow, exploring parliament, and eating delicious Canadian treats! My favorite thing was a pastry called a Beaver Tail; yummy fried dough with toppings like chocolate, Nutella, lemon and cinnamon sugar. They were truly a Canadian delicacy!

Beaver Tails weren’t our only culinary adventure. We also tried different local restaurants in every city with our “nunderstudy club.” Each week our wonderful understudies would have rehearsal so they could be ready at the slightest notice. Those of us who didn’t attend those rehearsals decided to start a club and enjoy some extra exploring of the local cuisine. Those lunches always had lots of fun conversation and ended with some local ice cream!

wiz3

(Nunderstudy club meeting+A little too much sunshine=This silly photo :))

Trying new foods was fun, but it was not our only new experience. We climbed a waterfall in the rain in Portland, hiked through caves in California, and rode segways in Washington DC. We shopped in Boston’s Fanueil Hall, saw the animals in San Diego’s amazing zoo, and enjoyed the view at Niagra Falls.

wiz4

All of these experiences were wonderful new adventures, but the truth is that there really is no place like home. Those of us who call Texas home could not wait to make it to this part of the tour.

We arrived last week with pit stops at Bucee’s and as much Tex-Mex as we can handle! It is such a dream come true to play these Texas stages where many of us grew up attending shows.

For me, that stage will be Bass Performance Hall. I have been looking forward to bringing our wonderful show about the importance of cherishing where you came from, and embracing who you are, to the place that shaped me growing up! I can’t wait to see you all next week when “There’s no place like home,” will be more meaningful to me than in any other city!  See you soon, Fort Worth!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

North Texas native following Yellow Brick Road back home!

b85f43_0d1c59c8c3e044cc8b5735e91c730ac2.jpg

Kaley Were

Hey, y’all! This is Kaley Were, ensemble member of the North American tour of The Wizard of Oz, coming to Bass Hall June 7 – 12. I’m so excited to share a little bit about me and my journey down the Yellow Brick Road as I travel home to Texas next month!

I grew up in Allen, Texas, and graduated from Oklahoma City University with a Bachelor of Music in Music Theatre last May, so I cannot wait to be back in the good ol’ South for the last leg of the tour as we travel through Austin, San Antonio, and Fort Worth.

Growing up in the North Texas area, I used to see shows at Bass Performance Hall and dream about being up on that stage, and I feel so lucky to be living out that dream on this tour!

As a member of the ensemble, I have what I think is one of the coolest jobs in the show – I get to travel along the Yellow Brick Road with Dorothy as a munchkin, a glamorous citizen of Oz, a soldier-like Winkie, and much more!

were1

I get to wear so many gorgeous costumes throughout the show. Here’s my favorite, a bejeweled skirt and corset I wear in the Emerald City scene.

Transforming myself into so many different characters and getting to dance and sing in so many different styles forces me to stay present in every moment of the show, and keeps my job thrilling every evening!

I also have the honor of understudying two principal characters – Aunt Em, played by Canada native Emmanuelle Zeesman and Glinda, played by fellow Texan and my dear friend, Rachel Womble.

I am so lucky to have so many fellow Texans on the road with me, and getting to spend time with and learn from Rachel is no exception!

were2

Here I am in full Glinda garb for a dress rehearsal in Denver.

Being on the road and living out of a suitcase definitely has it’s challenges, but being surrounded by so many loving and supportive people has made this journey an incredibly special one. I cannot wait to bring this magical show home to the North Texas area. Every night that I get to perform,  I am reminded that there truly is no place like home! I hope to see you there in June!

Farewell, New York. Also: WE SAW HAMILTON!

28HAMILTONWEB-master768

The cast of Hamilton. Photo: The New York Times.

Jason Wise with Performing Arts Fort Worth here with some final words on our recent trip to New York.

It’s always a little bittersweet when The Broadway League’s Spring Road Conference comes to an end.

As usual, we had a blast seeing old friends and making new ones, checking out all the new shows and discussing with our industry peers hot topics in the Broadway world.

Jason Wise

But we’re coming home to a very exciting time for Bass Hall and Performing Arts Fort Worth. We’re putting the final touches on our 2016-2017 Broadway at the Bass season, our biggest and best Broadway season ever. You guys are going to absolutely love it!

Mark your calendars for June 5. That’s when we’re announcing the titles in our new season.

Before we move on, here are recaps of the final shows I saw in New York.

Hamilton
This masterpiece is truly a game-changer for live theater. You are witnessing history in the making as HAMILTON tells the story of Alexander Hamilton, one of the Founding Fathers of the United States and first Secretary of the Treasury. This outstanding musical, penned by and starring Lin-Manuel Miranda, features a stellar cast and one of the finest musical scores in Broadway history.

We don’t want to give too much away about this life-changing theatrical experience, other than to say with 16 Tony Award nominations and sold-out performances through early 2017, all the hype and publicity is truly justified. We can’t wait to have the opportunity to present HAMILTON on the Bass Hall stage one day (no, we don’t have any dates confirmed yet for the tour, but are working with the booking agent as tour plans get finalized).

IMG_0594

Waitress stars Jessie Mueller. 

Waitress
This lighthearted fun, romantic comedy stars Jessie Mueller and features an infectious musical score by pop princess Sara Bareilles. Mueller’s electrifying performance provides a night of fun entertainment at the theater. It’s easy to see why this show is up for several Tony Awards next month, including Best Musical. And you can even get your own little piece of pie in the theater! Who doesn’t love that?

‘Til next year, New York!

– Jason Wise, Director of Programming, Communications & Sales

On Your Feet had us on our feet, we loved She Loves Me, and Something Rotten was anything but!

On Your Feet! tells the story of singer Gloria Estefan

Performing Arts Fort Worth marketing staff here with another update from New York, where we’re attending The Broadway League’s 27th annual Spring Road Conference. 

We’ve spent the past few days discussing with our industry peers hot topics in the Broadway world, from booking shows to uncovering new ways to reach new audiences. The great thing about this conference is the amount of passion and enthusiasm attendees bring to these sessions. We always come home with a lot of new ideas. 

We also come home with a lot of ticket stubs. Our days here may be devoted to panel discussions but our nights belong to the shows. Among our team of five, we’ve seen nearly a dozen shows, and we still have a day or two to go. 

One of our favorites has been On Your Feet!, a musical based on the life and career of influential pop singer Gloria Estefan. It’s truly an inspirational show that’ll lift your spirits and move your feet. As producers in the show through the Independent Presenters Network, we look forward to bringing it to Bass Hall.

She Loves Me has been one of our favorite shows.

We can’t gush enough about the musical revival She Loves Me. The movie You’ve Got Mail was based on it. The show follows a similar storyline about love-stricken pen pals. 

Also very impressive was Bright Star, the bluegrass-driven musical written by Steve Martin and Dallas-bred singer Edie Brickell. Both made cameo appearances at the conference yesterday. 

Another show we absolutely loved was Something Rotten!, a musical comedy about Shakespeare that had us rolling in the aisles from the second the curtain went up. It’s another show we’re hoping to bring to the Hall in the future. 

Later this week we’ll offer thoughts on some of the other shows we’re seeing, including Waitress, The Humans, Shuffle Along and, yes, Hamilton. We’re seeing it soon! 

Hello from New York! 

Greetings from New York City! Welcome to our first dispatch from the Broadway League’s Spring Road Conference, a yearly event designed to show off the latest and greatest titles on Broadway. 

Along with hundreds of representatives from other performing arts centers around the country, we make the pilgrimage here every year to check out the shows before they go on tour, to decide whether we should bring them to Bass Hall. We also like to talk shop/catch up with our industry counterparts. 

The talk of this year’s conference is, of course, Hamilton. Tickets are very scarce, even for those in the Broadway industry. Because she’s a Tony-voter, our President & CEO Dione Kennedy is seeing the show this week, along with Jason Wise, our Director of Marketing and Sponsorships. The rest of us are entering the Hamilton lottery and crossing our fingers.

Anderson Cooper interviews Hamilton cast.

If we don’t get to see it, we’ll be fine because on Monday we were treated to the next best thing: ringside seats to a Hamilton creative conversation hosted by none other than Anderson Cooper. Many of the principle cast and creative team members took part, including Lin-Manuel Miranda, Daveed Diggs and others. The interview will air on Friday on Sirius’ Broadway station. 

Andy Cohen chats with the cast of The Humans.

On Tuesday, conference-goers were treated to more special guest appearances. Oscar-winning actress Jessica Lange popped by to promote her new show, Long Day’s Journey Into Night. Seth Williams interviewed NBC Entertainment Chairman Robert Greenblatt about the burgeoning popularity of live TV musicals. Cynthia Erivo and Danielle Brooks swung by to talk up their new show, a revival of The Color Purple. And Bravo TV’s Andy Cohen hosted a creative conversation for The Humans with stars Reed Birney and Jayne Houdyshell, director Joe Mantello and writer Stephen Karam

Then of course we’re seeing shows all week. Monday night we saw School of Rock, based on the Jack Black film of the same name, about a struggling musician who steals his way into the hearts of a rockin’ group of school kids. The cast was fantastic, especially the children, whose choreographed dance moves were reminiscent of Matilda. Matter of fact, we thought of it as Matilda with guitars. 

This week, our team will divide and conquer to see several more shows, including Waitress, On Your Feet!, Something Rotten!, She Loves Me, Aladdin, Bright Star and many others. We’ll send more updates – and wish us luck with the Hamilton lottery!

Ten Texans are Following the Yellow Brick Road – Back to Texas!

600x315

CTtPeLCXAAAQqMc

Rachel Womble

Hey, y’all! It’s Rachel Womble, your own Texas Glinda, checking in from the North American tour of The Wizard of Oz, coming to Bass Hall June 7-12.

Today I wanted to introduce you to some of the other wonderful Texans involved in the show!

Spending so much time away from family can be tough, but sharing time with our wonderful team, and especially the 10 Texans we are lucky enough to have with us, make life out on the road a little bit more like home!

Our Texans include four cast members, three members of our orchestra, including our incredible conductor, Mr. David Andrew Rogers, and three members of our management team. They come from all over the state including the Dallas/Fort Worth area, San Antonio, and many small towns in between. You can see all of their beautiful faces in the below picture.IMG_5534.JPG

Front Row (left to right): Diego Diaz (Ensemble), Amy Button (Ensemble), Kaley Were (Ensemble), Lisa Green (Stage Manager), Abram Best (Assoc. General Manager), Wayne Green (Assoc. Music Director). Second Row (left to right): David Andrews Rogers (Music Director), ME! – Rachel Womble (Glinda), Matthew J. Pool (Keyboards) and James Lanahan (General Manager).

Thank you for being apart of our journey as we follow the Yellow Brick Road all the way home to Bass Performance Hall. To see more pictures from our adventures follow my Instagram . Check back next month as I turn the blog over to fellow Texan  Kaley Were!

%d bloggers like this: