Need something to keep yourself busy this week? Well we’ve got a ton of somethings to entertain theater lovers in New York City! If you aren’t catching one of the new stars in Annie, Jersey Boys or Phantom, maybe you’re seeing one of the fantastic new acts at 54 Below. Read on for this week’s guide to the hottest happenings for the week of July 29.
MONDAY, JULY 29
BILLY JOEL GOES BIG AT BIRDLAND
Broadway longtimers Tony Yazbeck and Jill Paice join singer-songwriter Samia Najimy Finnerty for The Pop Show Presents...The Songs of Billy Joel at Birdland Jazz Club. The NYC hotspot will be ringing with the sounds of Joel's signature classics, sung to the rafters by two Broadway faves. And so it goes...and so should you, to Birdland!
ALSO: Rising musical theater composer Drew Gasparini brings his contemporary sound to Joe’s Pub; 54 Below plays host to Motown’s Morgan James, the touring cast of American Idiot and a slew of Broadway kids performing their concert When I Grow Up; Neil Patrick Harris drops by Jimmy Kimmel Live.
TUESDAY, JULY 30
WELCOME TO BROADWAY
Thinking of seeing a show on Tuesday? A slew of casts are getting major shake-ups, with July 30 marking the first official performances for Sadie Sink and Taylor Richardson in Annie, Julie White in Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, Tony LePage in Rock of Ages, Marni Raab in The Phantom of the Opera, Luis Enrique in Forever Tango, and Dominic Scaglione Jr. in Jersey Boys. Phew! Got your tickets yet?
ALSO: I Forgive You, Ronald Reagan opens off-Broadway; Josh Gad and Kristin Chenoweth chat up Jay Leno; album recording of When I Grow Up: Broadway's Next Generation hits stores.
WEDNESDAY, JULY 31
A VERY POTTED POTTER PARTY
Celebrate the birthday of Harry Potter and author JK Rowling by catching the next Hogwarts Express to the Little Shubert Theatre, where Potted Potter continues its magical run. This comic take on all seven Harry Potter books is not to be missed, and what better way to ring in Rowling’s birthday than by playing a massive audience-fueled game of Quidditch?
ALSO: Broadway vet Terri White hits the stage at 54 Below.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 1
GET HOOKED ON GRACELAND
Theater fans are well aware that Broadway hunk Aaron Tveit is smoldering on the small screen in USA’s new series Graceland—but are you actually watching it!? We’re loving the sunny California cop drama, and we’re paying particular attention to Tveit and fellow theater vet Daniel Sunjata, who are giving us plenty of reason to tune in every Thursday night. Let your binge-watch begin!
ALSO: Before hitting Broadway, The Bridges of Madison County starts at Williamstown Theatre Festival; one-man off-Broadway star Colin Quinn shows up on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart; Smash fans can pick up a 2014 wall calendar in stores!
FRIDAY, AUGUST 2
BE A REGULAR EINSTEIN
Jay Prasad's world premiere play Einstein is the latest show with smarts to spare! The drama focuses on finding the "real" man behind the mighty genius, charting his life from Nazi Germany to the forefront of modern science. Get to know the twisting, turning life of this remarkable man (played by Richard Kent Green)—and maybe you'll even learn a thing or two about the theory of relativity.
ALSO: The cast of Andrew Keenan-Bolger and Kate Wetherhead’s hit web series Submissions Only preview season three at 54 Below; Matthew Morrison drops by Live with Kelly & Michael.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 3
ALICE RIPLEY RAISES HER VOICE
Would you believe that Alice Ripley has never performed at 54 Below? Neither do we! The Tony winner will make her official debut at the Broadway hotspot with a one-night-only concert event Ripley Reflects, which will include music from Broadway shows in which she originated a character, as well as an arrangement of originals and covers. But don’t worry if you can’t make it—the evening will be recorded for album release in November.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 4
THE EXPLORERS END THE ADVENTURE
Audiences have one last chance to catch Manhattan Theatre Club’s uproarious production of Nell Benjamin’s The Explorers Club, an ensemble comedy about a prestigious club of adventurers whose membership is shaken up by the arrival of a brilliant woman. Catch Jennifer Westfeldt, Lorenzo Pisoni and the rest of this stellar cast before the extended run runs out!