Thursday, June 5, 2008

Broadway week

I was feeling a little disappointed about this year's lineup for Broadway Week on Live with Regis and Kelly.

Last year, there were terrific performances from Company's Raul Esparza, Spring Awakening's Lea Michele and Jonathan Groff, Grey Gardens' Christine Ebersole and the casts of Curtains and Mary Poppins. Except for Company, which I never got to see, they were all shows I loved. I was even more excited about last year's cohost, Neil Patrick Harris.

So when this year's schedule came out and I saw the lineup - no In the Heights or Passing Strange or South Pacific or Gypsy, I was a bit shocked. Instead, we have The Little Mermaid, Xanadu, Grease and Cry-Baby.

Ok, I understand that it's all about ratings. I realize that there's a big audience for Disney, and Xanadu is supposed to be a blast, but do we really need songs from two musicals set in the 1950s? There are so many more interesting and innovative and thrilling and downright gorgeous shows on Broadway right now. I think last year's shows really demonstrated the range of musicals on Broadway. This year's selections don't seem as interesting.

But my spirits have been lifted, because cast members from A Catered Affair will be featured on both The View and Live with Regis and Kelly. I'm so happy that this poignant gem of a musical is getting a little television attention. On June 11, Harvey Fierstein and composer John Bucchino will perform on Regis and Kelly, and on June 12, Tony nominees Faith Prince and Tom Wopat will perform on The View.

Here's the Regis and Kelly lineup:

June 9: S. Epatha Merkerson, Gina Gershon, a performance by the cast of The Little Mermaid; A Chorus Line's Mario Lopez is the guest cohost

June 10: Marisa Tomei, Cat Deeley, a performance by the cast of Cry-Baby

June 11: Mark Wahlberg, a performance by the cast of A Catered Affair

June 12: The Jonas Brothers, a performance by the cast of Xanadu

June 13: Liv Tyler, Miranda Cosgrove, Trisha Yearwood, a performance by the cast of Grease

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