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Book cover for "Singular Sensation"
Simon & Schuster / Simon & Schuster

We welcome New York Post theater columnist Michael Riedel to the Roundtable this morning with the publication of his second book, Singular Sensation: The Triumph of Broadway.


With over 150 insider interviews, Singular Sensation portrays the people, money, and power that created the blockbuster shows and aesthetic spectacle that has dominated not only a couple of acres of real estate in the heart of Manhattan but has also captured the hearts and minds of millions of people around the world.

Michael Riedel has been the theater columnist for the New York Post since 1998. Michael’s first book, Razzle Dazzle: The Battle for Broadway was a New York Times bestseller.

Caroline Bowman as Elsa and Caroline Innerbickler as Anna in the National Tour of "Frozen"
Matt Murphy / Murphy Made

For the last several weeks, crews have been busy at Proctors in Schenectady working on the national broadway tour of the Disney and Broadway hit, “Frozen.”

“Frozen” begins two weeks of performances at Proctors on Sunday, November 10 and runs there through November 24.

Based on the animated film of the same name, “Frozen” has been melting hearts on Broadway in an all-new production created for the stage which features songs from the original film plus an expanded score with a dozen new numbers. The music and lyrics are by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez, the book is by Jennifer Lee. The show is directed by Michael Grandage with choreography by Rob Ashford.

Caroline Innerbichler plays Anna and F. Michael Haynie plays Olaf.

As a teenager, Mallory O’Meara was thrilled to discover that one of her favorite movies, "Creature from the Black Lagoon," featured a monster designed by a woman, Milicent Patrick. But for someone who should have been hailed as a pioneer in the genre, there was little information available. For, as O’Meara soon discovered, Patrick’s contribution had been claimed by a jealous male colleague, her career had been cut short and she soon after had disappeared from film history. No one even knew if she was still alive. As a young woman working in the horror film industry, O’Meara set out to right the wrong, and in the process discovered the full, fascinating story of an ambitious, artistic woman ahead of her time.

Mallory O'Meara's book is "The Lady from the Black Lagoon: Hollywood Monsters and the Lost Legacy of Milicent Patrick."

Jackson Murphy (a.k.a. Lights-Camera-Jackson) began his career as a movie critic at the age of 7 1/2, doing reviews in our region. He has talked movies and made award predictions on numerous television programs. He currently is the mind behind the entertainment website, Lights-Camera-Jackson. He joins us this morning to talk about the start of Summer Movies – beginning with the new Avengers tale.

At the ninth annual Capital Region Canstruction design/build competition, talented teams of architects, designers, builders, engineers, and college and university students will join forces to create innovative “Disney”-inspired structures, featuring scenes from Disney classics, modern day favorites and all including a little bit of magic.

The structures will be made entirely of canned food, instead of bricks, stone, glass and other traditional building materials. Benefitting The Food Pantries for the Capital District, these structures will be on display at the New York State Museum March 27-April 10.

This year’s participants are challenged to break a local record of 104,000 pounds of food collected in addition to monetary donations to support local food pantries. To tell us more – we welcome Natasha Pernicka, Executive Director at Food Pantries for the Capital District and Sara Stein, President of Capital Region Canstruction and Architect at EYP.

Kem Weber, a well-known mid-century architect, was part of the distinctive West Coast modernism movement that helped shaped the relaxed California lifestyle. He influenced California style during the mid-twentieth century with buildings architecture, interior designs and furniture, including his famed Air Line chair, which is part of many museum furniture collections.

As chief designer for the Walt Disney Studios in Burbank in 1939, Kem Weber also designed the specialized animation furniture that went into the then new studio complex. The Disney animation furniture, which has been lauded in recent years, was designed for specific animation disciplines with input from the artists that would be using it. It was all part of Walt Disney’s desire to create an efficient utopian campus for animated film production.

"Kem Weber: Mid-Century Furniture Designs for the Disney Studios" is a comprehensive overview of the Kem Weber designed Disney animation furniture that takes the reader on a journey from concept sketches and photos to interviews with legendary artists. David A. Bossert celebrates and details the form and function of this unique mid-century furniture and the impact it had on the Disney animation process over the decades. David A. Bossert is an award-winning artist, filmmaker, and author. He worked at The Walt Disney Company for more than 32-years and is now an independent producer, creative director, and writer.

Based on the story, “Tarzan of the Apes” by Edgar Rice Burroughs and the Disney film, “Tarzan,” the stage musical version of “Tarzan” features a book by David Henry Hwang and music and lyrics by Phil Collins. The Berkshire Theatre Group presents “Tarzan” at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, Massachusetts through August 16.

“Tarzan” follows the story of an orphaned boy, raised by gorillas in the jungle. Struggling to find balance between his human instinct and animalistic education, Tarzan's life is altered forever when he encounters his first human, the curious and wonderful, Jane. Directed by Travis Daly, the BTG production features over 100 talented Berkshire youth.

Travis Daly joins us along with Tim Jones who plays Tarzan and Haley Aguero – one of the actors playing Jane.

choreographer with dancers
http://chasebrockexperience.com/


  The Chase Brock Experience is a Brooklyn-based contemporary dance company founded by choreographer Chase Brock. CBE has premiered 29 dances (to music from Beethoven to David Yazbek to Nellie McKay) and six commissioned scores (from composers like Joshua Rosenblum and Michael John LaChiusa.)

The dance company has been in residence at Catskill Mountain Foundation and will perform at Orpheum Film & Performing Arts Center in Tannersville, NY this Saturday at 7:30pm.

Chase Brock joins us now. In addition to choreographing for his own company, Brock as provided his talents and expertise to various Broadway, Off-Broadway, regional and international productions including Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark; Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame; and HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver.

Shawn Stone, Digital Editor of The Alt joins us to talk about what he's seen lately and what cultural events are coming up this week in our region.

A Bronx Tale: The Musical begins previews on Broadway at the Longacre Theatre tomorrow night. The new musical features a book by Academy Award nominee Chazz Palminteri, music by Oscar, Grammy, and Tony Award winner Alan Menken, and lyrics by Grammy Award winner and Oscar and Tony Award nominee Glenn Slater. The show is co-directed by two-time Oscar winner Robert De Niro and four-time Tony Award winner Jerry Zaks, with choreography by Tony nominee Sergio Trujillo.

Based on the one-man show written and performed by Chazz Palminteri that inspired the now classic film, this streetwise musical will takes the audience to the stoops of the Bronx in the 1960s—where a young man is caught between the father he loves and the mob boss he’d love to be. Featuring an original doo-wop score, this is a tale about respect, loyalty, love, and above all else: family.

The musical premiered at the Tony Award-winning Paper Mill Playhouse in Millburn, NJ to critical and popular acclaim earlier this year and officially opens on Broadway on December 1st.

Alan Menken joins us.

More than 75 million people around the world have experienced the awe-inspiring visual artistry, the unforgettable music, and the uniquely theatrical storytelling of the Broadway spectacular – Disney’s The Lion King.

And why not? Giraffes strut. Birds swoop. Gazelles leap. The entire Serengeti comes to life as never before. And as the music soars, Pride Rock slowly emerges from the mist. And, we are happy to report, The Lion King has now taken over Proctors through April 17th.

Winner of six Tony Awards, including Best Musical, The Lion King, brings together one of the most imaginative creative teams on Broadway. Tony Award-winning director Julie Taymor, Tony Award-winning choreographer Garth Fagan and some of Broadway’s most recognizable music, crafted by Tony Award-winning artists Elton John and Tim Rice.

This morning we welcome two of the leading actors who play the Lion brothers - Mufasa and Scar. Patrick Brown plays the villainous Scar and Gerald Ramsey plays the King lion – Mufasa.

“Annette Funicello has always made Utica and the Mohawk Valley proud.”  ~ Senator Joseph Griffo
WAMC Composite Photo by Dave Lucas / Public Domain

In celebration of Women’s History Month, State Senator Joseph Griffo announced that Utica-born actress Annette Funicello has been recognized by the New York State Senate as a Historic Woman of Distinction.

  It’s a classic story of the American Dream. George Mitchell grew up in a working class family in Maine, experiencing firsthand the demoralizing effects of unemployment when his father was laid off from a lifelong job. But education was always a household priority, and Mitchell embraced every opportunity that came his way, eventually becoming the ranking Democrat in the Senate during the administrations of George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

Mitchell looks back at his adventures in law and politics in his memoir, The Negotiator.

JOAN MARCUS

  Jim Dale started his professional career as a seventeen year old comedian playing the Music Halls of Britain. A little down the road he became a pop singing star during the early days of rock and roll and appeared in fourteen of the legendary Carry On films for the British cinema.

At the request of Laurence Olivier he joined the British National Theatre. He starred in the first Musical by Cameron Mackintosh, The Card, and played Fagin in Oliver! at the London Palladium. He first appeared on the American stage in 1973 - in 1980 he won the Tony Award for his work in Barnum.

wikipedia.org

A singer and actress whose voice has become very recognizable among young children and their parents will visit Tanglewood Music Center this summer.

    In its Broadway incarnation, Disney’s stage-musical of Newsies (adapted from the 1992 live-action Disney movie of the same name) was called a “stirring crowd-pleaser” by The New York Times and “an exhilarating jolt of youthful energy” by The Daily News. The show won the 2012 Tony Award for Best Score and Best Choreography and ran in New York City for more than 1000 performances.

The National Tour of Newsies started last week at Proctor’s in Schenectady, NY and we are joined by two of the tour’s leads - Dan DeLuca who plays Jack “The Cowboy” Kelly and Stephanie Styles who plays Katherine Plumber.

    This summer Norman Rockwell Museum pays tribute to Walt Disney, another American icon of the 20th Century, with a special exhibition celebrating the 75th anniversary of the acclaimed visual storyteller’s first feature-length animated film. “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: The Creation of a Classic” will be on view at the Museum through October 27, 2013.

The exhibition celebrates Walt Disney’s vision and the artistry of his dedicated staff, illustrating how they shaped and defined an entirely new American art form through their creation of this groundbreaking film.

Joining us is exhibit Curator and Creative Director of the Walt Disney Animation Research Library, Lella Smith who guides a staff of 24 in exhibiting, archiving, and digitizing the library’s collections. We also welcome, the Chief Curator for the Norman Rockwell Museum, Stephanie Plunkett.

5/22/13 - Panel

May 22, 2013

  WAMC’s Alan Chartock, University at Albany Journalism Professor and Investigative Reporter, Rosemary Armao, and Editor of The Daily Gazette, Judy Patrick.

This morning our discussion topics include:
Osama Pics
Post Tornado Efforts
Immigration Reform Passes Hurdle
Pope's Exorcism?
Apple's Taxes
Disney's "Brave" redesign

  This Sunday, May 26th - Club Helsinki in association with Showstoppers New York presents Judy Kuhn in All This Happiness as part of their Helsinki on Broadway cabaret series.

Judy Kuhn is a three time Tony nominee for her work in the Broadway musicals: Les Miserables, Chess, and She Loves Me. She was also the singing voice of Pocahantas in the 1995 animated Disney film of the same name, which means she sang the Academy Award winning song, “Colors of the Wind” in that movie.

In All This Happiness she weaves together tunes from the pop songwriters and musical theatre composers that have had the most influence on her.

    Helen Reddy will appear in concert at The Troy Savings Bank Music Hall tomorrow night at 8pm. The Australian-American Queen of 70s Pop will perform songs that she’s always loved that weren’t necessarily her hits - and she’ll perform some of those, too.

The singer and actresses biggest hit was the feminist anthem “I am Woman” - for which she she became the first Australian to win a Grammy award. A frequent guest on talk shows and variety programs of the 1970s and early 1980s – Reddy helmed The Helen Reddy Show - the 1973 summer replacement series for The Flip Wilson Show - making her the first Australian to host a variety show on an American television network. Her film career includes an extended cameo as a nun in Airport 1975 – and a starring role in Walt Disney's Pete's Dragon, introducing the Oscar-nominated song "Candle on the Water."

Helen retired from live performance in 2002 - but has returned to the stage for these concerts.

Walt Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was first shown to a theatrical audience in December 1937 and brought overwhelming, joyous applause from a house full of hardened film-industry professionals.

From today’s perspective, its stature is even greater—named as one of the best movies of all time by the American Film Institute, and still beloved by children and adults around the world.