“1, 2, 3… Exhale Together”: Broadway families, finally reunited

The cast and crew of “Waitress” hugged each other. They kissed. They tightened. They swayed. And at their first in-person rehearsal ...

The cast and crew of “Waitress” hugged each other. They kissed. They tightened. They swayed.

And at their first in-person rehearsal on Wednesday August 4, they also paid tribute to Nick cordero, the actor who died of complications from the coronavirus last summer. He was in the original Broadway production, and series book author Jessie Nelson had an idea: On opening night, they should put a pie in Cordero’s honor on the restaurant’s menu. from the Serie. They settled on a slice of “Live Your Life”, named after a song he had written.

When the cast of “Hadestown” first met for rehearsals, they formed a circle around their phantom light, which had illuminated the empty Walter Kerr Theater for more than a year. “I’m so happy to be here with all of you,” said Anaïs Mitchell, who wrote the music, lyrics and book for the Tony award-winning show.

Ruben Santiago-Hudson, the writer, star and director of “Lackawanna Blues”, began to walk the lines he remembered as he visited a rehearsal studio for the first time. He narrowed his eyes in the corners of the room, as if his lines could be hidden there. He remembered more than he thought.

In or near spaces of Midtown Manhattan, the cast and crews of Broadway shows are gathering for the first time, preparing to take the stage after the pandemic forced shutdown. We were flies on the wall at many of these dates, all for shows that are among the first to debut on Broadway. At every premiere, one thing was true: the show would go on.

There are three new mothers in the “Hadesville” rehearsal room. One, director Rachel Chavkin, carried her newborn baby, Sam Vincent, in a baby carrier attached to the front. Two little pink feet protruded from the bottom. Another, actress Afra Hines, spent the entire pandemic with her baby girl in the South Bronx. The third, Anaïs Mitchell, had at home a 16-month-old daughter named Rosetta.

During the first rehearsal, after the rest of the cast and crew shared personal updates, Mitchell pulled out his phone. She had been in contact with the show’s vocal arranger, Liam Robinson, while he was in South Korea, she said, and he sent her a voice memo of an Irish folk song for a singalong. She would try to remember how it had happened.

“Union be in all our hearts,” she sang the chorus, cleanly, in a lively tone. The actors sang it back, harmonizing effortlessly. “May all our hearts be united. We will end the day as we started it: we will end it with pleasure.

“Hadesville»Resumes performances on September 2 at the Walter Kerr Theater.

Singer and songwriter Sara Bareilles – who wrote the music and lyrics for the musical “Waitress” – mixed with its actors and its team. “It’s very surreal,” she said. “We keep saying it feels like a yearlong high school reunion.” The last time she played the role of Jenna Hunterson in this theatrical adaptation of the 2007 film at the Adelphi Theater in London, and that production was shut down early due to the pandemic.

As Barry Weissler, a co-producer, put it, “If Stephen King had written a novel for a year and a half, no one would believe it.

Six years and six months after the show’s first meeting on Broadway (the original production debuted on Broadway in 2016) in the same building, the cast and crew again came together and formed a circle. Choreographer Lorin Latarro asked everyone to hold hands for the first time in over a year. “One, two, three: breathe in,” she directed. “And exhale together.”

“Waitress” begins performances on September 2 at the Ethel Barrymore Theater.

Associate choreographer Gregory Butler, wearing a black tank top and black hoodie, counted eight quick and tense counts. A group of dancers – also all in black – followed each of his notes as they rehearsed the choreography for the show’s opening number, “All That Jazz.”

“They’re just celebrating, and they live through every fiber of their body, to the point where that excitement makes them hit themselves,” Butler explained, slapping his arms to insist. “Then they have to get rid of it.” He was mistaken as an example.

“But you’re all fierce,” he said. “You are all fierce! Every time I give a note, remember, at the end, what should I say? “

The dancers whispered, “I love you.

“And we’re back,” said Butler. “Broadway is back! “

Suddenly, the energy in the room changed.

“She’s so proud,” Butler whispered, his voice broken. The dancers hugged each other, hugging her. “In the name of Annie,” he said, honoring the choreographer with this long-standing revival, Ann Reinking, deceased in December. “Thanks, Annie. “

“Chicago” resumes performances on September 14 at the Ambassador Theater.

“Welcome to Nanny’s” read on a small green sign in the rehearsal room “Lackawanna Blues”. “Where beautiful memories are made. “

The play’s writer, director and actor, Ruben Santiago-Hudson, bought the sign on a recent trip with his wife, when they stopped in Cold Spring, NY, for a bite to eat.

This was, Santiago-Hudson said, only the last time his late nanny appeared in his life.

“The nanny always shows up,” he said. “She came up with this thing, ‘I’m going to be in a little town upstate New York.'”

Nanny is the woman who raised Santiago-Hudson – the woman “Lackawanna Blues” revolves around.

“Do you know, when I went to get him, the lady who has a little shop, she said to me, ‘You had a nanny?’ Santiago-Hudson said. “I said, ‘No, my mother, they called her nanny.’ She said, ‘Tell me about her.’ “

“Blues Lackawanna” premieres September 14 at the Samuel J. Friedman Theater.

Their show was about a month away from its first preview performance. As sweat beaded under the masks and upper lips sweated in the beating sun, the cast and crew of “Go over” first showed up with handshakes and hugs, rather than a Zoom screen. Then they listened intently to playwright Antoinette Chinonye Nwandu as she preached a sermonette.

With his shaved pink and blue hair, Nwandu was reading the Bible aloud. We are in Old Testament times, she said, and the world is in need of a healing. Her voice strained, she read about Ezekiel in the Valley of Dry Bones. “And as I prophesied, there was a sound, and here’s a tremor, and the bones came together, bone to bone,” she read. “You didn’t all know you were in these verses. Hello bones!

” Go over “ is performing at the August Wilson Theater; SeatGeek.com.

First rehearsal: August 23 at 1 p.m., Gershwin Theater

Somewhere at the back of the Gershwin Theater was a neat row of chairs, six wide by five deep. On those chairs were the cast of “Wicked”, masked and whispering to each other like students returning from summer vacation. From the front of the room, the musical director, Dan Micciche, caught their attention for the first rehearsal of the score.

“Hiii! Micciche sang. The hall erupted into cheers and applause. “Oh my God. I just have – the amount of gratitude to see you all,” he said. “I’ve been dreaming about it for 18 months, like all of us.

“I just couldn’t be happier to be here and to be with all of you – and to hear from you,” Micciche said. “Know I’m coming,” his voice dropped into a strained whisper, “I love you so much.”

Then, back to business: “I’ll guide you a bit eighth grade vocal warm-up, ”Micciche hammered out the last sentence. “And then we’ll just run.”

“Bad” resumes performances on September 14 at the Gershwin Theater.

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Newsrust - US Top News: “1, 2, 3… Exhale Together”: Broadway families, finally reunited
“1, 2, 3… Exhale Together”: Broadway families, finally reunited
Newsrust - US Top News
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