July 04, 2015

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Playbill Presents
Little Shop's Audrey II Auditions to be Hedwig! With The Encores! Off-Center production of Little Shop of Horrors wrapped up, Audrey II is once again out of work. What's a poor plant to do but seek out another role? Just in the nick of time, Hedwig and the Angry Inch comes calling — they will need a new Hedwig once Taye Diggs finishes up his run in the show, after all! Will Audrey II land the role?
Playbill Presents
Celebrating New York City Brings Laura Benanti, Norm Lewis, Jared Grimes and Broadway Tunes to Madrid

Laura Benanti, Norm Lewis and Jared Grimes helped the U.S. State Department with an early 4th of July celebration at Madrid’s Conde Duque with Celebrating New York City. Over 3,000 ex-pats and Spaniards were in attendance as the trio performed classic numbers from West Side Story, Les Misérables, Company and more. The one-night-only concert was conducted by Finding Neverland’s Mary-Mitchell Campbell and was produced by Harvey Weinstein by special invitation from James Costos, the U.S. Ambassador to Spain.

The Shows
Coming to Broadway?: Watch the Trailer for Deaf West Theatre's Spring Awakening

Recent reports suggest that Spring Awakening is headed back to Broadway. The acclaimed Deaf West Theatre and Forest Of Arden production just wrapped its run at the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills, CA and could be on the move. The production featured a cast of deaf, hard of hearing and hearing actors and musicians who performed simultaneously in American Sign Language and spoken English. Read the Playbill story.

Playbill Presents
Alan Menken Sings From Little Shop of Horrors and Reveals His Creative Secrets

The 2015 International Thespian Festival was held in Lincoln, Nebraska June 22-27. The weeklong "immersion experience" for middle school and high school students includes workshops, performances and technical programs. This year's festival kicked off with "The Music Of Menken: Audrey, Ariel, Aladdin... and Alan." Menken was unable to attend, but invited the production's Artistic Director J. Jason Daunter to his home for an extensive interview. In this clip, Menken reveals the secrets of writing for Little Shop of Horrors and illustrates by singing some of the show's most famous tunes. See what's up with the Encores! Off-Center production of Little Shop.

Playbill Presents
Megan Hilty Sings From Bombshell and The Sound of Music at Voices for the Voiceless Fundraiser

On June 29, Seth Rudetsky and husband James Wesley's Voices for the Voiceless packed the St. James Theatre as Megan Hilty, Darren Criss, Tituss Burgess, Eden Espinosa, Lilla Crawford, Rachel Crow ("The X Factor") and many more took the stage to support You Gotta Believe. Over $500,000 was raised for this organization that finds adoptive parents for kids aging out of the foster care system. Highlights from the evening include tunes from Wicked, Funny Girl, and The Sound of Music as well as pop hits made famous by the Commodores and Rachel Platten. See a Photo Call.

Playbill and the Players
"I Bought Some Lipstick Yesterday": Taye Diggs on Beginning His Hedwig Transformation

Rent star Taye Diggs will return to Broadway July 22, succeeding Darren Criss in the Tony-winning revival of Hedwig and the Angry Inch. At a media event, Diggs spoke to Playbill about how he's been preparing for his first foray into makeup and heels, and his long-time love of the musical. Take a look at Taye Diggs in his first promo shot for Hedwig and the Angry Inch.

Playbill Presents
Audra McDonald Sings Stunning "Rainbow High"

Audra McDonald recently performed a concert at Carnegie Hall with music director and pianist Andy Einhorn, bassist Mark Vanderpoel and drummer Gene Lewin. The audience was in for a special treat that night as she reached into her songbook and brought out a stunning version of "Rainbow High" from the iconic Evita

Playbill Pride
Broadway Sings for Pride: Rent Cast Members Sing "Seasons of Love"

Broadway Sings for Pride celebrated its 5th anniversary with a few special treats. Here, Frenchie Davis and a multitude of Rent cast members from productions that spanned the globe performed the moving "Seasons of "Love." See Davis bring down the house when she sings from The Wiz.

Playbill Pride
Broadway Sings for Pride Features Tunes From Eminem, Funny Girl

On June 22, Broadway Sings for Pride celebrated its 5th year with a host of Broadway performers singing pop and show tunes. In this reel of highlights, they run through songs by Madonna, Elton John, Eminem and Rihanna and from shows including Funny Girl and Songs for a New World. See Frenchie Davis bring down the house when she sings from The Wiz.

Playbill Pride
Broadway Sings for Pride: Frenchie Davis Kills It With "Home" From The Wiz

"American Idol" and Rent star Frenchie Davis performed before a capacity crowd at Broadway Sings for Pride on June 22. Her take on "Home" from The Wiz brought the house down. See more highlights from the show.

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