This May Be the Sexiest HIV/AIDS Fundraiser Ever

Mark MacKillop in "Room XIV."

Mark MacKillop in “Room XIV.”

Imagine being on an international tour of the musical West Side Story and having to wake up in a different hotel room every week. That was reality for Broadway actor/singer/dancer Mark MacKillop for a year when he performed across the globe.

“It really wasn’t all that hard because our schedule was pretty similar in each city,” said MacKillop when I chatted with him. “But the hardest thing was getting used to the pillows in each hotel. It made it hard to sleep sometimes!”

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Tickets to Philly Engagement of Rogers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella On Sale Today

The cast of Cinderella.

The cast of Cinderella.

Did you know that Rogers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella did not make its Broadway debut until 2013? Originally written as a screenplay, the much-loved musical adaptation of the classic fairy tale aired in 1957 with the lovely Julie Andrews as the title role (there were subsequent re-makes of the made-for-TV musical, including that one in 1997 starring Whitney Houston as the Fairy Godmother and Brandy as Cinderella, but let’s conveniently forget that even happened…).

Finally, Cinderella made it to the Great White Way last year, and lucky enough for Philadelphia, the National Broadway tour opens at the Academy of Music in November. Tickets for the Thanksgiving holiday engagement go on sale today at 10:00 am. Read more »

Tickets On Sale Now to See Bradley Cooper on Broadway in The Elephant Man

bradley cooper

Bradley Cooper is a busy man these days. Between filming Adam Jones in London and recording a recent string of Philadelphia Eagles commercials the Abington Township-bred actor has found time to prepare for the lead role in the upcoming Broadway production of The Elephant Man. This is the second time he’s played the role of protagonist John Merrick. The first time was in 2012 at the Williamstown Theatre Festival.

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Bring Rocky the Musical to Philly

Rocky musical

Andy Karl in Rocky the Musical.

This Sunday, August 17th, the curtain will close for the final time on Rocky the Musical on Broadway.  It opened with such promise, a star-studded opening night and decent reviews. But Rocky had trouble filling seats, meaning it is doubtful we will ever see Clubber Lang or Ivan Drago belt out a tune in Rocky II through V: The Musicals.

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The Book of Mormon Breaks Forrest Theatre Record

The Book of Mormon

All the craze surrounding the Philadelphia engagement of Broadway’s The Book of Mormon, the oh-so-wrong musical by the creators of South Park, is clearly for a reason: It was announced today that the show has broken box office records at the Forrest Theatre.

According to the show’s management, “The Book of Mormon […] has broken the house record in Philadelphia, PA for the week ending August 10 at the Forrest Theatre, grossing $1,678,495.00 for a standard 8-performance week. This tops the previous record, held by Jersey Boys in 2012 of $1,617,700.00.” Read more »

The Boys of The Book of Mormon

Mormon boys JR Bruno and Josh Daniel after a performance at the Forrest Theatre.

Mormon boys JR Bruno (left) and Josh Daniel after a performance at the Forrest Theatre.

They tap-dance in missionary outfits. They sing. They change into really strange costumes and perform a full-on show-stopping routine during a number called the “Spooky Mormon Hell Dream” song.

I’m talking about the extraordinarily talented cast of The Book of Mormon, the Tony Award-winning Best Musical playing an extended engagement at Philadelphia’s Forrest Theatre through September 14th. Two of the ensemble members, JR Bruno and “swing” Josh Daniel, are part of the oh-so-wrong musical by the creators of South Park that takes stabs at just about every other musical out there, including The King and IThe Lion King, and Wicked. It’s also pretty damn funny; ironically enough, in the middle of my interview with the cast, a theater manager interrupted us, saying there was an audience complaint: people were laughing too much.

Bruno has been on the tour since it started two years ago and performed on Broadway in West Side Story; Daniel, a fresh graduate of the College Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati, has been on tour for a year. I had the chance to sit down with both cast members after their Thursday evening performance, and we chatted about Philly (this is the first-time visit for both of them), the Forrest Theatre, and what it is like to tour across North America.

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Cast of Rocky On Broadway Performing on Atlantic City Boardwalk

A new entertainment series, Broadway on the Boardwalk, kicked off in Atlantic City this week. The free show, taking place every Monday in July, brings actors from current Broadway shows to perform on the Kennedy Plaza section of AC’s Boardwalk. This week’s first go-round featured singers from Cabaret, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella, and Motown: The Musical. Photos below:



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There Is A Musical About Urban Planning. No, Really.

A promotional image for the show

A promotional image for the show

According to a recent New Yorker story, a while back someone called the office of then-New York City director of city planning Amanda Burden with a request to talk to her—-about an upcoming musical about urban planning. Understandably, Burden didn’t believe it. “I said, ‘That has to be a prank call,’” she told the New Yorker. But then this spring, she saw the new musical If/Then and—-surprise—-encountered a version of herself onstage: “‘Oh, my God,’ she recalled thinking. ‘I think that’s me!’”

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