The ’60s were a crazy yet influential time in our country’s history. People were fighting for their civil rights at home while debating America’s involvement in a growing conflict abroad, striving to find a place in this world that they could call their own. Half a century later, not much has changed. So reviving the 1967 American tribal love-rock musical Hair at the Hollywood Bowl for a three-night-only run this weekend has a special resonance beyond the potential to see famous people get naked on stage. And though stars like Kristen Bell, Amber Riley, and Sarah Hyland did not take it all off, they lead a spectacular cast of film and TV stars returning to their roots—theatrically if not follicle-wise. READ FULL STORY
Tag: Amber Riley (1-8 of 8)
The Hollywood Bowl’s yearly A-list musical production has cobbled together another star-packed cast for this year’s mounting of Hair, directed and choreographed by Adam Shankman.
Kristen Bell (Frozen) will lead the cast as Sheila, alongside Hunter Parrish (Weeds) as Claude, Amber Riley (Glee) as Dionne, Jenna Ushkowitz (Glee) as Jeanie, and Beverly D’Angelo (who starred in the 1979 film version of Hair) as Mom. Shankman’s Instagram announcement also includes Broadway vet Benjamin Walker, recording artist Mario, and 2 Broke Girls star Beth Behrs among the cast. READ FULL STORY
You never forget your first time watching “Don’t Rain On My Parade.”
We’ve already ranked the top Glee performances of all time, which tend to be big group numbers. But any fan of the show also treasures its individual star-making moments — whether they’re quick ditties sung in the choir room, or, inexplicably, full solos sung at a competition.
In honor of the musical dramedy’s 100th episode, which airs tonight, we looked back over Glee‘s first 99 installments to pick out our favorite musical moments for each main character. (And by that, we mean the ones who sing a lot — sorry, Emma and Sue Sylvester.) Watch video of our selections below — and then tell us your personal faves in the comments. READ FULL STORY
Being on Glee has plenty of perks, but early access to information about the show? Not one of them.
Amber Riley, alongside Dancing With the Stars partner Derek Hough, stopped by Arsenio today, where Arsenio Hall naturally asked the actress about Ryan Murphy’s recent announcement: that Glee would likely conclude after next season.
Riley shared that she first heard the news today. “It’s been a couple of years, and it’s been a really good run,” she said about her time on the program. “Glee‘s been an amazing blessing in my life, and to so many other people…I’m sure everybody can attest to a story, or a character they love, or something that really touched their heart, so I was really blessed to be a part of that for so many years.”
Glee diva-in-training Amber Riley made an impressive New York stage debut last night in Cotton Club Parade, a Broadway-ready revue boasting a spirited selection of classic jazz and swing numbers, some eye-popping choreography, and Wynton Marsalis’ incomparable 16-member Jazz and Lincoln Center All Stars orchestra. The 26-year-old L.A. native best known as Mercedes Jones showed off her pipes and some fine footwork on two standards by Jimmy McHugh and Dorothy Fields, “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love” and “On the Sunny Side of the Street.” READ FULL STORY
A high-flying, basket-tossing new musical based on the 2000 teen cheerleader comedy Bring It On took an unusual (backward-somersaulting) path to its Broadway opening this week. Instead of launching a national tour after a splashy New York run, the energetic tuner (which is only loosely based on the Kirsten Dunst film, plot-wise) played in 13 cities starting last November before bowing on the Great White Way. In my B+ review, I noted the youthful cast and a score, by Tom Kitt (Next to Normal) and Lin-Manuel Miranda (In the Heights), with lyrics by Miranda and Amanda Green (High Fidelity), that actually “sounds like it was composed in this century.”
Also on Broadway, it’s the final curtain this weekend for three shows: Fela!, a short-run musical revival that has been doing anemic box office; Harvey, the comedy revival ending its limited summer run so star Jim Parsons can return to L.A. to shoot The Big Bang Theory; and Memphis, the 2010 Tony-winning musical that is expected to recoup its $12 million investment this weekend after 30 previews and 1,166 performances over the course of nearly three years. (At that rate, imagine how long it might take Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark to break even.) READ FULL STORY
In a move that seems fitting, Glee star Amber Riley is taking her pipes to the Great White Way: The actress will join the cast of Duke Ellington’s Cotton Club Parade, which will return to New York City Center for a just a few dates, from November 14-18, as a part of the city’s annual Encores! series. The role marks the New York stage debut for Riley.
Cotton Club Parade is a revue-style show that celebrates Ellington’s reign at the famed Harlem nightclub through the ’20s and ’30s. The stage show is just like the shows that were in the club during its heydey, including singers, dancers, and variety acts, with songs by famed jazz composers like Jimmy McHugh and Dorothy Fields (“I Can’t Give You Anything But Love”), Harold Arlen (“Stormy Weather”), and, naturally, Ellington (“Rockin’ in Rhythm”).
The show opened at City Center last November for a short, six-performance run. Cotton Club Parade will again be directed and choreographed by Warren Carlyle, with music direction by Wynton Marsalis. The rest of the cast includes past stars like Tony-nominee Brandon Victor Dixon (The Color Purple), Jared Grimes (Twist), and Tony-winner Adriane Lenox (Doubt).
Tanner on Twitter: @EWTanStransky
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