Playbill, The Broadway League, the Times Square Alliance, and Prudential Financial announce details and talent for Curtain Up Broadway Festival, a three-day outdoor experience in Times Square presented by title sponsor Prudential Financial; sponsored in part by Wagoneer, and Audible Theater with additional support from the NYC Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment, Music Performance Trust Fund and Hotel Edison.
From Friday September 30 - Sunday October 2, 2022, Curtain Up Broadway Festival will bring Broadway to the streets, in the heart of New York City: Times Square. Stretching between 45th and 48th Streets, over fifteen unique events will take place. All interactive events and performances are live, free and open to the public. #CurtainUpBway
Correction: The actors performing in the Book of Mormon segment are Kevin Clay and Cody Jamison Strand.
Curtain Up Broadway Festival Main Stage
FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 30
2:00–3:00 PM – Official Curtain Up Kick-Off
Hosted by TONY Award and Pulitzer Prize-winning A Strange Loop cast members John-Andrew Morrison and James Jackson Jr., Curtain Up Broadway Festival kicks-off with guest speakers from Playbill, The Broadway League, Times Square Alliance, The NYC Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment, and title sponsor Prudential, with special guest speakers. Performances will be part of the event by Broadway Stars Norm Lewis (The Phantom of the Opera), Brittney Johnson (Wicked) and Kerry Butler (Beetlejuice), under the direction of music director James Sampliner. The event will ignite excitement on the main stage and include a celebratory countdown to the official event start!
5:00-6:30PM – The Broadway Block Party
Join Prudential, Playbill, and the Times Square Alliance as they celebrate the kick-off to Curtain Up Broadway Festival. Times Square will “ignite the night” with THE BROADWAY BLOCK PARTY – a large-scale street party that invites revelers to dance and sing to classic and contemporary Broadway songs and performances in the heart of New York City: Times Square. Guests will experience a celebration like no other, while entertained by Broadway DJ Mike Borowski, guest performers Christine Dwyer (Wicked), Matt DeAngelis (Waitress), Apollo Levine (MJ), Tracee Beazer (Frozen), Raymond J Lee (Groundhog Day), Lee Siegel (Paradise Square), and hosted by Bryan Campione, with additional music support from Dean DiMarzo. #BwayBlockParty.
SATURDAY OCTOBER 1
CANCELLED DUE TO WEATHER – Ailey’s Revelations dance workshop
Everyone can dance with Ailey! Join the processional through Duffy Square as Ailey’s West African drummers and dancers lead New Yorkers of all ages to the Curtain Up Main Stage, where you’ll learn modified excerpts of Alvin Ailey’s masterwork, Revelations. Participants are asked to wear comfy clothing.
1:45-2:15PM – Playbill: The Game Show LIVE!
Join us in Times Square as Broadway Stars as they take part in the first-ever live Playbill: The Game Show - where theatre’s brightest stars prove how much they know about Broadway! Written by Aaron Fuksa and produced by Roberto Araujo, watch as Broadway participants Julia Murney (Wicked), Nic Rouleau (The Book of Mormon), Shereen Pimentel (West Side Story ) test their knowledge of all-things Broadway in a fun and fast-paced game, hosted by Christopher Sieber (Company), with Nicholas Connell on piano.
3:00-3:45PM – Audible Theater presents Jason Gotay on Stage
Jason Gotay takes the stage and sings selections from his Audible Original, Where You’ll Find Me, a musical narrative that honors the strong and dynamic women in his life with musicians Garrett Taylor (keys/music direction), Matt Hinkley (Guitar), Alan Stevens Hewitt (Bass) and Jeremy Yaddaw (drums). Jason’s show coincides with Curtain Up Broadway Festival and is playing at the Minetta Lane Theatre September 30—October 2. The Audible Theater performance, recorded live, will be available to stream on Audible later this year.
5:00-6:30PM – “One Night Only” – A Benefit Concert for The Entertainment Community Fund
Join stage stars and celebrities for a one-night-only celebration of Broadway, benefitting the Entertainment Community Fund. Directed by Bryan Campione and Corey Mach, with musical direction by Joshua Stephen Kartes, the concert will invite audiences in Times Square and online to share in song and celebration; all while raising money to support the Fund’s mission of fostering stability and resiliency and providing a safety net for performing arts and entertainment professionals over their lifespan. Hosted by Natalie Joy Johnson (Kinky Boots), special guests include Ann Harada (TV: “SMASH”, Bway: Cinderella), Antwayn Hopper (A Strange Loop), Bobby Conte (Company Revival), Carolee Carmello (1776 Revival), Christine Dwyer (Wicked), Christopher Sieber (Company Revival), Corey Mach (Kinky Boots), Ginna Claire Mason (Wicked), Jarrod Spector (Beautiful – The Carole King Musical), Javier Ignacio (Company Revival), Jay Armstrong Johnson (The Phantom of the Opera), Jelani Remy (The Lion King), Jessica Hendy (Cats), Kelli Barrett (Getting The Band Back Together), Mary Kate Morrissey (Mean Girls), Santino Fontana (Film: “Frozen”, TV: “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”, Bway: Tootsie), TikTok vocal sensation T.3, Jim Hogan (Kimberly Akimbo), Liam Fennecken (U.S. Tour School of Rock), Brendan Jacob Smith (The Simon & Garfunkel Story), with representatives from The Entertainment Community Fund and Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. The “One Night Only” Band includes Kartes, Yayoi Ikawa, Hiroyuki Matsuura, Colin Dean, Andy Buslovich, Rachel Lanskey, Erikka Walsh (Once), Nick Anton, Clyde Daley, Matthew Jermiason, and Amy Griffiths. Background vocalists include Baldwin Wallace graduates Charles Mayhew Miller, Jillian Kates, and Kailey Boyle.
SUNDAY OCTOBER 2
10:30AM-1:00PM - Curtain Up! LIVE from Broadway Concert
Hosted by Amber Ruffin and Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Curtain Up! LIVE from Broadway will spotlight marquee talent and showcasing Broadway musicals and plays, marking the culmination of Curtain Up Broadway Festival. This concert will also air live on WABC, and is directed by Sammi Cannold; with music direction by Daryl Waters.
For more information on Curtain Up! LIVE from Broadway, click here.
Belt It Out on Broadway Dueling Pianos Stage; Presented by Prudential
FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 30
3:00-3:30PM – CHICAGO Sing Along
Hotcha! We’re playin' songs fast and loose from the musical CHICAGO, currently celebrating 25 years on Broadway! Audiences can sing-along to their favorite songs and all that jazz in the heart of Times Square led by pianist Scott Cady and Broadway cast member Haley Swindal!
3:45-4:15PM – WICKED Sing Along
We couldn’t be happier to have pianist Paul Loesel and Broadway cast member Jesse JP Johnson lead a WICKED sing along. Audiences can sing along to the show's thrillifying songs in the heart of Times Square!
4:30-5:00PM – LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS Sing Along
Join special guests from the three-time ‘Best Revival’ Award-winning production of Little Shop of Horrors, as they lead audiences in a sing along of songs from the show!
6:30PM-8:00PM – Curtain Up After Dark
Presented by Prudential, Curtain Up After Dark welcomes Broadway Sings: The Golden Age of Broadway. Join the Broadway Sings Band and special Broadway performers T. Oliver Reid (Hadestown), Conrad Ricamora (The King and I), Jessica Keenan Wynn (Beautiful), Morgan James (Motown the Musical), Jeanna de Waal (Diana), Corey Mach (Kinky Boots), Mary Kate Morrissey (Mean Girls) and Allison Semmes (Motown), and band members Kartes, Colin Dean, Hiroyuki Matsuura, Yayoi Ikawa, Clyde Daley, Matthew Jermiason and Noah Vece as they present a concert filled with Broadway songs under the golden setting sun. With hit Broadway songs “jazzed up”, audience members will help choose the next song using their mobile devices!
SATURDAY OCTOBER 1
CANCELLED DUE TO WEATHER – KINKY BOOTS Sing Along
Bring your glam, glimmer and vocal energy to Times Square to sing along with a cast member from Kinky Boots to celebrate Broadway's Fan Favorite songs including music from the Kinky Boots catalog hosted by cast member Maria Wirries and pianist Steven Cuevas!
CHANGED DUE TO WEATHER
2:00-3:00PM and 4:30-5:30PM – Belt It Out on Broadway Dueling Pianos presented by Prudential
Join Prudential all weekend at Belt It Out On Broadway, a series of Dueling Piano show-downs held right in Times Square. From specially themed programs featuring Broadway stars to spirited sing-alongs where audience members choose the tunes, rollicking good fun will be yours for the asking. These sessions will star pianists Michael McAssey and Rachel Kaufman at 12:30pm and Michael McAssey and Drew Wutke at 4:00pm!
6:30PM-8:00PM – Curtain Up After Dark
Presented by Prudential, Curtain Up After Dark welcomes Rockers On Broadway: Live in Times Square, benefitting The PATH Fund. Join Broadway’s Donnie Kehr and his band as they rock the stage with Broadway and contemporary rock-n-roll hits, alongside special guests including Rob Evan (Jekyll & Hyde),N’Kenge (Caroline, or Change), Michael Longoria (Jersey Boys), Jen Perry (Kinky Boots), Lauren Pritchard (Spring Awakening) Max Sangerman (Smokey Joe’s Café), Bligh Voth (The Band’s Visit), Jeremy Schonfeld and Sam Behr, with additional support from managing director Cori Gardner. The concert’s band members include Kehr, Gary Bristol, Gary Seligson, Hidayat Honari, John Putnam, Behr, and Jay Leslie. Audiences can get in on the action and choose songs during the show by donating to The PATH Fund on their mobile devices.
SUNDAY OCTOBER 2
1:00-3:00PM – Belt It Out on Broadway Dueling Pianos presented by
Join Prudential all weekend at Belt It Out On Broadway, a series of Dueling Piano show-downs held right in Times Square. From specially themed programs featuring Broadway stars to spirited sing-alongs where audience members choose the tunes, rollicking good fun will be yours for the asking. This session will star pianist Drew Wutke and Franca Vercelloni!
Sing for Hope Piano Concerts and Free Play
Located on Broadway between 47th and 48th Streets, guests can take photos, play a tune or two or enjoy a concert on Playbill’s Sing for Hope Piano! Special guest pianists Rachel Kaufman, Steven Jamail (Born For This) and Kevin Winebold will take to the keys, playing contemporary and classic Broadway tunes for all to enjoy. Performance schedules will be posted daily at the Sing for Hope piano. For more information on Sing for Hope, visit singforhope.org.