Seeing ‘RENT’ for the first time as told by a Watermark intern

By : Colton Adkins
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Jonathan Larson’s Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning musical “RENT” changed the landscape of Broadway when it premiered in 1996.

A re-imagining of Puccini’s “La Boheme,” “RENT” — currently in the third year of its 20th Anniversary National Tour — follows an unforgettable year in the lives of seven artists struggling to follow their dreams without selling out.

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Javon King makes national tour debut with ‘RENT’

By : Layla Ferris
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Javon King plays Angel in the national tour of “RENT”

Javon King is an openly gay actor from New Jersey, and he is making his national tour debut with the company of “RENT.” He joins the cast with his portrayal of fan favorite Angel Dumott Schunard.

King, 21, studies musical theater at Rider University in New Jersey. He’s been in several productions at the university such as “Of Thee I Sing” and “Once on This Island.”

King says he’s shocked and ecstatic to have the opportunity to perform “RENT” nationally. King spoke with Watermark on the show’s opening night in Orlando to discuss his first memories of “RENT,” the show’s depiction of the LGBTQ experience and the complexities of playing Angel.

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‘Something Rotten!’ actor Nick Rashad Burroughs talks about being on Broadway, working with Todrick Hall and what inspires him

By : Jeremy Williams
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Nick Rashad Burroughs grew up singing in the church in Birmingham, Alabama. As the son of a preacher, Burroughs spent his days either with the youth choir or running track.

“Track was my focus at the time,” Burroughs says. “I found theater a bit late, but just in time to go to college for it.”

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Syreeta Banks leads ‘Dreamgirls’ to the Venice Theater

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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For actress Syreeta Banks, appearing courtesy of the Actors’ Equity Association in the Venice Theatre’s new production of Dreamgirls, the lead role of Effie White is a family affair.

Banks’ earliest memories of the theater stem from her mother’s production of the same Tony and Academy Award winning musical, which first premiered on Broadway in 1981. Since then, it’s launched revivals, tours and a 2006 feature film, captivating audiences on the silver screen and stage alike.

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Legendary performer Joel Grey headlines the Garden Theatre’s 10-year anniversary celebration

By : Jeremy Williams
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Few entertainers are as synonymous with a character they have portrayed as legendary actor Joel Grey is with the Emcee from Cabaret. Grey does not so much act the part as embody the character and become the master of ceremonies at the fictional Kit Kat Club in 1930s Berlin.

Grey performed in the original Broadway run of Cabaret as well as the 1972 film version, winning a Tony Award and an Academy Award for the same role. He is one of only nine performers to do so.

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Peppermint makes history as first trans woman to create a principal role on Broadway

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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“RuPaul’s Drag Race” season nine alum Peppermint has been cast in the new musical “Head Over Heels,” making her the first openly transgender woman to originate a principal role on Broadway.

“Head Over Heels” is based on the Elizabethan comedy “The Arcadia,” and will feature music from the all-female band The Go-Go’s known for their hits “We Got the Beat,” “Our Lips Are Sealed” and “Vacation.”

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Kate Shindle on playing out author Alison Bechdel in the national tour of ‘Fun Home’

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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Kate Shindle is an author, activist, actor and ally to the LGBTQ community. She’s also the youngest-ever president of the Actors’ Equity Association, the labor union fighting for the fair treatment of over 50,000 theatre industry professionals, and is only the third woman to hold the title.

Last year, Shindle broke ground in another way when she began touring the country as Alison Bechdel, the lead in the Tony-award winning Fun Home. The show, based off of Bechdel’s graphic memoir of the same name, is the first Broadway production to feature a lesbian protagonist.

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The groundbreaking Broadway smash hit ‘RENT’ celebrates its 20th Anniversary with a tour across America

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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It’s been over 10,512,000 minutes since RENT took the world by storm in 1996, well over 525,600. But as Jonathan Larson’s original rock musical readies its 20th anniversary tour, it’s clear that every one of those minutes has indeed been measured in love.

The off-Broadway world premiere of RENT, a re-imagining of Puccini’s La Bohème, took place on February 13, 1996. The hit show transferred to Broadway on April 29 of the same year and went on to captivate audiences worldwide. It even inspired a 2005 film adaptation of the same name, featuring much of the original Broadway cast and earning nearly $30 million domestically.

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Acclaimed UK production of ‘Angels in America’ heads to NY

By : Wire Report
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LONDON (AP) – Britain’s National Theatre says its acclaimed production of “Angels in America” is heading to Broadway.

Andrew Garfield and Nathan Lane lead the cast of Tony Kushner’s “gay fantasia on national themes,” which opens at the Neil Simon Theatre in New York for 18 weeks beginning Feb. 23.

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Acclaimed singer and actress Barbara Cook has died at 89

By : Wire Report
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NEW YORK (AP) — Barbara Cook, whose shimmering soprano made her one of Broadway’s leading ingenues and later a major cabaret and concert interpreter of popular American song, has died. She was 89.

Cook died early Tuesday of respiratory failure at her home in Manhattan, surrounded by family and friends, according to publicist Amanda Kaus. Her last meal was vanilla ice cream, a nod to one of her most famous roles in “She Loves Me.”

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Disney’s The Little Mermaid

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An Under the Sea Sensation!

With music by eight-time Academy Award winner Alan Menken, this beautiful Broadway hit is based on your favorite Disney film! Come fall in love with the magic for the first time – or all over again! “One of the most ravishing things I have ever seen on a Broadway stage” – Time Magazine

The Thursday, July 13, performance will be sign language interpreted.

Stay tuned for on-sale information.

Cher announces Broadway musical coming in 2018

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL GAY MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Cher’s life story will be brought to the Broadway stage in a musical set to debut in 2018, the pop icon announced on Twitter on Tuesday.

The singer teased that the production was in the works back in January after attending the read through.

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