Another seven days, another 10 lessons we’ve learned about Broadway. It was a week full of secrets from How to Succeed’s newest heartthrob, Darren Criss, surprising new info about the Les Miz movie cast and, for some reason, a lot of magic. Read on below for a look at what we’ve learned in the last week on the Great White Way.
Darren Criss Was Inspired By High School Finches on YouTube
When Darren Criss was getting ready for his whirlwind Broadway debut, a three-week stint as ambitious '60s window washer J. Pierrepont Finch in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, he took a very 21st century approach in his preparation. “I watched a bunch of YouTube videos of [high school] How to Succeed performances,” he told Broadway.com. “It’s so inspiring. I definitely lifted some things!” Don’t worry, Darren! High school actors have definitely lifted a move or two from your YouTube videos; you’re just returning the compliment.
Hugh Jackman Will Make Actual Magic on Broadway
OK, so Hugh Jackman’s magical stage presence is hardly breaking news, but confirmation that he’ll be returning to the Rialto to play the title magician in new musical Houdini sure is. The tuner, which will have a score by Stephen Schwartz and a book by Oscar winner Aaron Sorkin, is slated to hit the Broadway stage during the 2013-14 theater season. He’s only just wrapped up Hugh Jackman: Back on Broadway, but can someone please magically make it 2013 right now?
Les Miserables Loverboy Eddie Redmayne Is a Musical Pro
Tony winner Eddie Redmayne, who will play Marius in the upcoming Les Miserables film, doesn't really have any professional singing experience, but don’t worry Les Miz lovers, this won’t be his first time on the barricades. “My mom and dad took my brother and me to see [Les Miz] when I was a kid, “ he told Broadway.com. “And the result was that when we went on holiday my brother sang a mean Jean Valjean and I was Javert.” Maybe he can give Russell Crowe a few tips.
Rose Hemingway’s Husband Describes Kissing Daniel Radcliffe as 'Magical'
When part of your job is to smooch Daniel Radcliffe every night, you better believe people are going to ask about it. Rose Hemingway, who spent a year locking lips with the Harry Potter star on stage before his recent departure from How to Succeed, got some help deflecting this incessant stage door kissing questions from a very helpful (and understanding!) husband. “He said, ‘Tell them, ‘It’s magical',” she told Broadway.com. No matter who said it first, it’s still totally true. Right?
Fiyero Has Weird Candy Rituals
It seems that Wicked’s latest Fiyero, Richard H. Blake, has some sweet superstitions. When Broadway.com visited the actor’s dressing room recently, he showed off his “magical box” of candy. Starburst, to be specific, but only pink and red, no yellow and orange allowed. His rules didn’t end there. “My OCD kicks in and I eat them at specific times during every show,” he said. “If I don’t, my show goes right out the window. It’s horrible!” he joked. Hey, whatever keeps you dancing through life, Richard.
Mormon, Shmormon! Fans Say Seminar Is Number One
When Broadway.com asked readers to vote for their favorite show of 2011, we didn’t know what to expect. After all, the crowded field included hits like The Book of Mormon, Spider-Man; Turn off the Dark, Anything Goes and Follies, to name just a very few. But the clear winner, scooping up 31% of the votes, was Seminar, an ensemble play from Theresa Rebeck and starring Alan Rickman. We love a flashy musical as much as anyone, but it’s always nice to see a well-written play get the credit it deserves.
Will Swenson Puts a Ring On It
Adorable theater couple Audra McDonald and Will Swenson both have leading roles on Broadway right now, in Porgy and Bess and Priscilla Queen of the Desert, respectively, but they had even more to celebrate when they got engaged on New Years Day! They fell for one another when they co-starred in 110 In the Shade in 2007, and we think McDonald’s recent tweet says it all: “Best new years day ever. Ever ever ever ever ever ever ever ever ever.” Congratulations, you two! We just hope Swenson hasn't given up his love of "Single Ladies" altogether.
Take That, Naysayers! Spidey Officially Rises Above
What rough start? Spider-Man has finally left its rocky beginnings in the dust, setting the record for the highest ever weekly box office gross on Broadway taking in $2.9 million the last week of 2011. To cap off that banner week (and year), the webslinger then swooped into Times Square on New Years Eve to rescue Andrerson Cooper from The Green Goblin. Millions of dollars and millions of viewers? What a difference a year makes.
Taylor Swift's Got Something to Prove
Country music princess Taylor Swift is going to have to bring it to the upcoming film adaptation of Les Miserables, in which she’s been offered the plum role of Eponine. Swift, whose only (non-music video) screen experience is an episode of CSI and a cameo in Valentine’s Day, will be starring opposite A-list actors like Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Eddie Redmayne and Anne Hathaway. It’s a big challenge, but we’re sure Tay-Tay will do her big number “On My Own” justice. After all, who knows more about unrequited love than a country singer?
Yep, Someone Wrote Twilight: The Musical
In the grand tradition of blockbuster movies everywhere, epic vampire drama Twilight has been made into a musical. Broadway vets Meghann Fahy and Jenna Leigh Green are starring in an upcoming charity reading of the show about Bella Swan, a small town teenager who falls in love with sexy vampire Edward Cullen. Colin Hanlon will play the role of the brooding bloodsucker, created on screen by Robert Pattinson. Whether you're Team Edward or Team Jacob, I'm sure we can all agree on the most important question: Will they sparkle?