Mark Bramble, an American theater director, author and producer most noted for his contributions to a pair of iconic American musicals, died on February 20 at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore following complications related to cardiovascular hypertension, according to a physician on call. He was 68 years old. His passing was reported by his longtime business manager and friend, Richard Koenigsberg.

Born on December 7, 1950 in Chestertown, Maryland to David and Margaret Bramble, Bramble grew up near Chestertown, Maryland and was educated at McDonogh School, Emerson College and New York University. He began his theatrical career in 1971 working as an apprentice to David Merrick, for whom he worked on many Broadway productions.

As a book writer, Bramble's work includes his Tony-nominated book of Barnum (1980) with songs by Cy Coleman and Michael Stewart. He was also nominated for Tonys for his book of 42nd Street (1981) and direction of that musical's revival (2001). He directed many productions of the tuner, in London, Sydney, Shanghai, Tokyo, Amsterdam and Vienna.

His other credits include The Grand Tour (1978) with songs by Jerry Herman, Pieces of Eight (1985), a musical adaptation of Treasure Island with songs by Jule ...

Broadway alums Skylar Astin and Alex Newell will sing out in a pair of lead roles for an exciting new TV pilot. The musical dramedy, titled Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist, is written by Austin Winsberg (Jake in Progress) and developed by NBC, according to Deadline.

The series follows the socially awkward Zoey (to be played by Jane Levy) who learns that she can hear the inner thoughts of people in the form of big musical numbers. Astin will portray Zoey's best friend, Max, with Newell as her neighbor Mo.

Astin is a screen alum of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and the Pitch Perfect series, with stage credits including Spring Awakening, What We're Up Against and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.

Newell earned acclaim for his small-screen turn on Glee with recent stage roles including Once on This Island and The Scarlet Pimpernel. Next month, he will appear in a concert presentation of Legally Blonde.

Further details on Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist are to come.

Manhattan Theatre Club Announces Full Cast for Ink

Source: | Posted: February 21 2019 @ 11:00 am

The forthcoming Broadway production of James Graham’s (Finding Neverland, Labour of Love) Ink, poised to open at Manhattan Theatre Club’s Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, has its cast. The production, which will begin previews on April 2, 2019, toward an April 24 opening, will be directed by two-time Olivier Award winner Rupert Goold, will star Olivier…

The post Manhattan Theatre Club Announces Full Cast for <i>Ink</i> appeared first on Broadway Direct.

Oklahoma! is returning to Broadway this season in a stripped down staging starring Rebecca Naomi Jones, Ali Stroker, Damon Daunno and more.

Daveed Diggs, Tony-winning original star of Hamilton, is gearing up for a return to off-Broadway's Public Theater, where that musical began. He'll appear in White Noise, a world premiere play by Pulitzer winner Suzan-Lori Parks, beginning performances on March 5 at the downtown theater. In advance of his new stage gig, the upcoming Snowpiercer star made a pair of recent talk-show appearances to help spread the word. "Suzan-Lori Parks has been my favorite playwright since I was eighteen years old," Diggs gushed to The Tonight Show's Jimmy Fallon. He also took the opportunity to debut his new single "At This Point" for TV audiences. Watch the Tony winner below and make plans now to see White Noise at the Public.

Following an acclaimed Broadway run at the Lyceum Theatre, The Play That Goes Wrong officially opened at off-Broadway's New World Stages on February 20. Directed by Mark Bell, the comedy features Broadway cast member Ashley Reyes along with Matt Harrington, Bianca Horn, Matt Walker, Ryan Vincent Anderson, Brent Bateman, Bartley Booz and Chris Lanceley. Check out the photos of the cast on opening night and be sure to see the everything go wrong for yourself.

The cast goes wrong backstage.

Andrew Durand & More to Join Bertie Carvel in Broadway's Ink

Source: | Posted: February 21 2019 @ 9:44 am

Full casting is here for the upcoming Broadway premiere of Ink, James Graham's thriller about the making of the tabloid newspaper The Sun. Olivier winner Rupert Goold will direct the previously announced production, slated to begin previews on April 2 with an opening scheduled for April 24 at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre.

Newly announced cast members include Andrew Durand (Head Over Heels) as Beverly/Christopher Timothy, David Wilson Barnes (The Lieutenant of Inishmore) as Brian McConnell, Bill Buell (The History Boys) as Frank Nicklin/Hetherington/Percy Roberts, Eden Marryshow (Pipeline) as Ray Mills/Lee Howard, Colin McPhillamy (The Ferryman) as Sir Alick/Rees-Mogg/Chapel Father, Kevin Pariseau (Legally Blonde) as Bench Hand/TV Host/Croiset, Michael Siberry (Junk) as Hugh Cudlipp, Robert Stanton (Saint Joan) as Bernard Shrimsley/Brittenden, Tara Summers (The Hard Problem) as Joyce Hopkirk/Muriel McKay, Erin Neufer (Nathan the Wise) as Anna Murdoch/Diana/Chrissie/Apprentice and Rana Roy (Queen America) as Stephanie Rahn.

They join the previously announced Bertie Carvel repeating his Olivier-winning performance as Rupert Murdoch alongside Olivier winner Jonny Lee Miller as editor Larry Lamb.

Ink is set in 1969 London, where the brash young Murdoch (Carvel) purchases a struggling paper, The Sun ...

Shoshana Bean is the Next Jenna in Waitress

Source: | Posted: February 21 2019 @ 9:38 am

Musical theatre star Shoshana Bean is about to make her triumphant return to Broadway. Bean will be the next actress in a parade of performers to put on the diner uniform to play Jenna in the Broadway hit Waitress. She will take over the role on March 18, 2019, and stay with the show through…

The post Shoshana Bean is the Next Jenna in <i>Waitress</i> appeared first on Broadway Direct.

Idina Menzel to Reprise Skintight Performance in Los Angeles

Source: | Posted: February 21 2019 @ 9:14 am

Idina Menzel as Jodi in Skintight.

Following an acclaimed turn in the 2018 off-Broadway premiere, Tony winner Idina Menzel has signed on to revisit the role of Jodi in Joshua Harmon's acclaimed play Skintight as part of the Geffen Playhouse's 2019-2020 season. Daniel Aukin will repeat his work as director of the play, scheduled to run in Los Angeles from September 3 through October 6, 2019. Additional casting will be announced soon.

Skintight centers on Jodi (Menzel), who is reeling from her ex-husband's engagement to a much younger woman. She turns to her famous fashion-designer dad for support. Instead, she finds him wrapped up in his West Village townhouse with 20-year-old Trey. Trey may or may not be gay, but he is probably an adult-film star. At least according to Jodi's gay son, who's also 20. Skintight examines youth, beauty, sex and a superficial culture that persists in teaching its children that all that matters is what's on the inside.

The Geffen's new season will also include productions of Witch (August 20-September 29, 2019), The Thanksgiving Play (October 22-December 1, 2019), Macbeth starring Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (November 5-December 8, 2019), Key Largo featuring Andy García (February 4-March 8, 2020), Bernhardt/Hamlet (April 7-May 10, 2020), The Enigmatist ...

“Set in an alternate universe during the 2008 primaries, as she fights for survival against a charismatic upstart … [and] unfolding around a pivotal moment in the contest, it examined how the strictures of her gender and the baggage of her marriage affected her ability to navigate the men’s world of politics. … Hillary and […]

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