'The Showtune Mosh Pit' for November 16th, 2011
THE LATEST IN UNAUTHORIZED GOSSIP AND BUZZ
FROM THE HEART OF CHICAGO'S SHOWTUNE VIDEO BARS,
AND MUSICAL THEATER NEWS FROM CHICAGO TO BROADWAY
by Paul W. Thompson
Overheard last weekend under the showtune
video screens at Sidetrack and The Call:
Last week, BroadwayWorld announced the nominations for the 2011 BroadwayWorld Chicago Awards, and voter excitement has already reached fever pitch! The second annual "Broadies," the only Theater Fans' Choice Awards in the Chicagoland theater community, include 125 nominations in 25 categories, covering touring productions and resident Equity and Non-Equity productions which opened between September 1, 2010 and October 31, 2011. Those 14 months saw some great productions, too! 40 different theaters are represented in the nominations (40!), even though the Chicago Shakespeare Theater on Navy Pier topped all others with a whopping 18 nominations! 5 different shows from CST received nominations, including 5 nominations each for two shows directed by Gary Griffin, "Follies" and "As You Like It." Goodman Theatre's "Candide" also received 5 nominations, and New York, Chicago and Hollywood celebrities are on the list as well (you do know that Darren Criss is a member of a Chicago theater collective, Team StarKid, don't you?). All the theaters you know and love are represented, more likely than not.
Vote now if you haven't, and get your friends involved as well! Theaters should get their patrons and subscribers to vote, too. You can track the real-time vote totals (by percentage) on BroadwayWorld's unique voting system, as thousands of votes have already been cast. But there's plenty of time. Voting will be open through December 15, 2011, and the winners will be formally announced before Christmas. All that will be left then will be for everyone, Mosh Pit peeps, winners, nominees and voters, to attend the BWW Chicago Awards Celebration at The Call nightclub, 1549 W. Bryn Mawr Avenue in the Andersonville neighborhood, on the evening of Wednesday, December 28, 2011, the bar's regular showtune night. You have to be 21 to get in, I'm afraid, but much fun will be had by all!!! Planning is already underway...
Voting Begins for 2011 BWW Chicago Awards!
We are surrounded by "West Side Story" nostalgia right now! The 50th anniversary of the release of the wildly popular and critically acclaimed film version of the 1957 Bernstein/Sondheim/Laurents/Robbins musical is this month, and rare but completely justified attention is being paid to this anniversary by many in American society. Last week, "Glee" chimed in with the McKinley High School version of the musical, and next week the Chicago Symphony Orchestra will play the film's soundtrack live! The voices of Marni Nixon, Jimmy Bryant, Betty Wand and Tucker Smith will ring throughout Orchestra Hall, while the faces (and sometimes the voices) of Natalie Wood, Richard Beymer, Rita Moreno and Russ Tamblyn will flash by the eyes and ears of those in attendance. It's November 25, 26 and 27 at Symphony Center on Michigan Avenue. That'll make a big movie theater!
WICKED vs. THE BOOK OF MORMON for Best Revival of a Play and More...
Past Articles by This Author:
Paul W. Thompson, a contributor to BroadwayWorld.com since 2007, is a Chicago-based singer, actor, musical director, pianist, vocal coach, composer and commentator. His career as a performer, teacher and writer is centered at Paul W. Thompson Music, located in Chicago’s historic Fine Arts Building, where he teaches the great songs of Broadway to the next generation of musical theater performers. A native of Nashville, Tennessee, Paul was raised in a family of professional musicians and teachers, steeped in classical, gospel, country, pop, sacred and show music. Dubbed a “thin, winsome lad” at the age of 13 by a critic for the Nashville Banner, he earned two degrees in musical theater (a B.F.A. with Honors from Baylor University and an M.M. from the University of Miami, Florida), plus an M.B.A. with Distinction from DePaul University. Paul’s memberships include Actors’ Equity Association, the American Guild of Musical Artists, the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (proud voter for the Grammy Awards!), the National Association of Teachers of Singing and New York’s Drama League.|
Moving easily between the worlds of classical music, religious music, classic pop and musical theater, Paul has appeared onstage or in the orchestra pit in concerts, musicals, operettas and operas in 30 states and in Europe, in a career spanning more than 35 years. His Chicagoland stage credits include “Forever Plaid” at the Royal George Theater and twenty mainstage productions at Light Opera Works. Paul joined the Chicago Symphony Chorus in 1995 (he was Tenor I Section Leader for four years and sings on two Grammy-winning recordings), and is one of Chicago’s foremost liturgical singers, marking 20 years as a member of the choir at St. James Cathedral (Episcopal) in 2011.He has composed and arranged a number of anthems, hymns and songs for worship and concert use, and collaborates on the creation of new works of musical theater. Paul can be found on Monday nights watching showtune videos at the world-famous Sidetrack nightclub, the inspiration for his weekly column, “The Showtune Mosh Pit.” His proudest achievement is that he has seen the original Broadway production of every Tony Award-winning Best Musical since “Cats.” No, really. Since “Cats!”
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