All tagged Chip Zien

Broadway’s Stout-Hearted Musical Men: 25 Clips of the Most Memorable Male Performances

About a month ago, I celebrated the great divas of Broadway with a tribute to their careers. This month, I thought I’d share a video montage of the men who have shaped Broadway with their talent and larger-than-life personalities. I hope you enjoy curling up and watching these twenty-five videos of the stout-hearted men of Broadway doing some of their finest work.

Broadway Musical Time Machine: Looking Back at Into the Woods

Coming off their Pulitzer Prize-winning artistic success of Sunday in the Park with George, composer-lyricist Stephen Sondheim and book writer/director James Lapine would turn their eyes to the world of fairy tales for their next Broadway musical. This would not be the Disney world of fairy tales with altruistic magic and happy-ever-afters giving us warm fuzzies. No, this musical would delve into the deep and dark psychologies of fairy tales, exploring the grimmest of Grimm fairy tales, violence in tact, but moral ambiguity in question. The result would be the now-classic Into the Woods.

Falsettos: Still Holding to the Ground

With the recently-confirmed Lincoln Center revival of Falsettos set to bow at the Walter Kerr Theatre this October, and with original director and librettist James Lapine (once again) at the helm of this William Finn masterpiece, it is interesting to look at how the world has changed in the 23 years since its original Broadway production. Is Falsettos as relevant today as it was back in the early 1990s? This story of a gay man named Marvin who leaves his wife and son for a male lover, and then loses him to a spectral illness that is presumably AIDS, was cutting edge and timely musical theatre for 1992, but does that translate for contemporary American audiences where gay marriage is now arguably a societal norm and AIDS, despite its continued threat, has somehow become a marginalized disease that doesn’t inspire quite the same fear? The answer is an astounding yes, but for very different reasons than in 1992.

Into the Woods – When a Musical Is More than Just a Musical

We all have our favorite musical, this is something most of us cannot deny. We feel guilty choosing one, but we do. Still, some of us take our obsession with a particular musical to a new level, and mine has always been with the Stephen Sondheim-James Lapine musical Into the Woods. There is so much wisdom and understanding of human nature buried inside this musical that, every time I return to it, I learn something new or make an observation that I hadn’t the first 200 times I’ve watched, listened to, or read it.