Inside the Emerald City: Wicked's Fiyero
By Playbill Staff
Stephen Schwartz and Winnie Holzman's international hit musical Wicked, which takes audiences to Oz before L. Frank Baum's famous tale of Dorothy begins, will celebrate its 10th anniversary on Broadway Oct. 30 at the Gershwin Theatre.
To mark the Broadway milestone, Playbill.com is looking back at the magical and mysterious characters who inhabit the untold tale of the witches of Oz and a selection of the actors who have filled their shoes. Each week Playbill.com will highlight a different leading character from the hit musical. (Read more about Wicked's 10th anniversary here.)
This week we look at Wicked's leading man, Fiyero.
Click through for a tour of Oz's Wicked inhabitants:
Norbert Leo Butz originated the role of leading man Fiyero in the Broadway production of Wicked. A two-time Tony Award winner for Catch Me If You Can and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Butz currently stars in the new Broadway musical Big Fish. Critics praised his performance. He was also Tony-nominated for his performance in Thou Shalt Not and has also been seen on Broadway in Dead Accounts, Rent, Wicked, Is He Dead?, Speed-the-Plow and Enron.
Taye Diggs, who met wife Idina Menzel in the original cast of Rent, temporarily joined her in the Broadway cast of Wicked in late 2003. Appearing opposite Menzel as Elphaba, Diggs stepped into the role of Fiyero for original cast member Norbert Leo Butz, who was on leave from the production due to a back injury. Diggs has appeared on Broadway in Carousel, Rent and Chicago. He received an Outer Critics Circle Award nomination for his performance in Off-Broadway's The Wild Party, and his screen credits include "Private Practice," "Kevin Hill," "Ally McBeal," "How Stella Got Her Groove Back," "The Best Man," "The Way of the Gun," "House on a Haunted Hill," "The Wood," "Go," "Brown Sugar" and "Chicago."
New Kids on the Block band member Joey McIntyre made his Broadway debut as Fiyero in 2004. McIntyre's theatre credits include tick, tick, boom!, Happy Days: The Musical, Babes in Arms and Barking Sharks. The Kid, his one-man autobiographical musical, was seen at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts in September. His film work includes "The Fantasticks," "Tony and Tina’s Wedding," "New Year’s Eve" and "The Heat," and his TV credits includes "Boston Public," "Love Inc.," "Less Than Perfect," "Psych," "90210," "CSI: NY" and "Motive."
Sebastian Arcelus was Broadway's seventh Fiyero, joining the cast in 2007. He first played the role in the first national tour of the hit musical. He also co-starred in Wicked with his now wife, actress Stephanie J. Block, when she returned to the Broadway cast as Elphaba in fall 2007. Arcelus has also appeared in the Broadway productions of Rent, Good Vibrations, Jersey Boys and the original cast of Elf. He currently appears in the Broadway stage adaptation of John Grisham's A Time to Kill.
Adam Lambert, best known for his appearance on "American Idol," was a member of the Wicked ensemble in 2005, and later played Fiyero during his time with the Los Angeles production in 2007. Lambert, who finished as runner-up on the eighth season of "American Idol," has also appeared on stage in The Ten Commandments and as Charlie Dalrymple in the 2004 Theatre Under the Stars production of Brigadoon. His albums include "For Your Entertainment," "Beg for Mercy" and "Trespassing."
Aaron Tveit was "Dancing Through Life" as Fiyero in the 2008 Broadway cast of Wicked. Tveit most recently starred as Enjolras in the Golden Globe Award-winning film of "Les Misérables." In addition to creating the role of Frank Abagnale, Jr. in the Broadway premiere of Catch Me If You Can, Tveit also originated the role of Gabe in the Tony and Pulitzer Prize-winning musical Next to Normal. He also appeared on Broadway in Hairspray. He can currently be seen in the new television series "Graceland."
Andy Karl, who was recently announced to take on the title role in the Broadway musical Rocky, was Broadway's Fiyero from 2010-11. Karl's Broadway credits also include Jersey Boys, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, 9 to 5, Legally Blonde, The Wedding Singer and Saturday Night Fever.
Kyle Dean Massey temporarily joined the Broadway cast of Wicked for two engagements in 2011 and later took over the role in 2012. He exited the production in May 2013. Massey's Broadway credits also include Next to Normal and Xanadu, and he was also seen in the Off-Broadway musical Lucky Guy.
Richard H. Blake, who began his Broadway career as a child actor in such musicals as The Prince of Central Park and Teddy & Alice, took over the role of Fiyero on Broadway in 2011. He has also appeared in Rent, Saturday Night Fever, Aida, Hairspray, The Wedding Singer, Legally Blonde and the current cast of Matilda The Musical.
David Burnham originated the role of Fiyero in the original workshops of Wicked and joined the Broadway cast in 2007. He has also appeared in the Broadway and national tours of The Light in the Piazza, as well as Jesus Christ Superstar, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and the Off-Broadway revue The Best Is Yet to Come - The Music Of Cy Coleman.
Derek Klena is Broadway's current Fiyero. The young actor joined the Broadway cast of Wicked in May 2012. He also appeared with his current Wicked co-star Lindsay Mendez in the acclaimed Off-Broadway production of Dogfight. Klena was also part of the revised Off-Broadway staging of the cult pop musical Carrie and the Hollywood Bowl staging of Hairspray.
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