May 31, 2002 |
Weimar Berlin gets a kicky Hollywood sheen in Bob Fosse's coolly decadent 1972 adaptation of the Broadway musical Cabaret, with Liza Minnelli starring (and winning an Oscar) as club diva Sally Bowles, and Joel Grey, all made up and riveting, as the wild-eyed Master of Ceremonies. With the show-stopping numbers "Money" and "Mein Herr," the film brings musical theater to the screen with a vibrancy that's hard to pull off. Fosse figured out the trick, and he flew with it (and nabbed an Oscar for himself, too)
February 6, 2013 |
NEW YORK - The folks who brought magic to the new Pippin in Massachusetts are coming south to Broadway. Producers on Monday said Matthew James Thomas would star this spring as Pippin; Patina Miller would be the Leading Player; Terrence Mann would be Charles; Charlotte d'Amboise would play Fastrada; Rachel Bay Jones would be Catherine, and Andrea Martin would play Berthe. All starred in the show that ended its run last month at the American Repertory Theater outside Boston.
May 16, 2007 |
Sometimes, as a theater reviewer, you get jaded. You see the same show enough times and in enough settings, you begin to make assumptions about who will do what well and who won't. However, the best part of the job (aside from all those free tickets and opening parties) is when you are proven wrong, time and time again, finding surprises where you never expected them. New Candlelight Theatre, the Ardentown, Del., dinner theater, has provided a couple of those surprises this season, most recently in its current production of Chicago.
April 11, 1986 |
"Big Deal," a musical based on the film "Big Deal on Madonna Street," written, directed & choreographed by Bob Fosse and starring Cleavant Derricks, Loretta Devine & Alan Weeks. At the Broadway Theatre, Broadway at 53rd St., New York. When I was last in the Broadway Theatre, in the fall of 1984, and enjoyed the distinction of praising the same Irvin Feld version of "The Three Musketeers" that virtually every other reviewer summarily dispatched to the gallows, that capacious playhouse was equipped with a pair of swinging spiral staircases flanking the stage and a bridge thrown across the top of the proscenium, upon which swashbucklers engaged in running swordplay at the drop of an aigrette plume.
January 17, 1999 |
The pizzazz, the sexiness, the kinetic energy, the cheeky wit are unmistakable no matter where you look - at the hunched shoulders, the twitchy heads, the gyrating hips, the thrusting arms, the legs that at one moment are gawkily knock-kneed and at the next are shooting outward faster than the eye can follow. And the hands - especially the hands. You can't take your eyes off those hands, and not only because they're often encased in white gloves. Now they're stretched wide, digits splayed like those on a child's drawing; now they're dangling, limp and lifeless.
October 19, 2000 |
Gwen Verdon, one of Broadway's most dazzling dancers, who originated the roles of Lola in "Damn Yankees" and the vulnerable prostitute in "Sweet Charity," died yesterday of natural causes. She was 75. The winner of four Tony Awards, Verdon was the wife and inspiration for one of Broadway's greatest choreographers, Bob Fosse. She died in her sleep in Woodstock, Vt., where she was visiting her daughter, Nicole Fosse Greiner. Broadway marquees were dimmed in her memory for a minute at 8 last night.
July 14, 1986 |
On the jacket of Hinton Battle's debut album, Untapped, is an acknowledgment to what, from a distance, looks like the entire telephone book of a medium-size city. Thanks are directed to the prominent (Bob Fosse, Michael Bennett) and the obscure (Ava "Woo-Woo" Wright). The Nederlander Organization and the Shubert Organization are on the list. So are Hinton Battle's mother ("Thanks Mom") and many more. Most of these are self-explanatory. Bob Fosse gave Hinton Battle a spot in Dancin', which was so exhausting that the exciting dancer started thinking about doing other things as well, like singing.
December 8, 1989 |
The song-and-dance man has a few things to say. And the message is not intended to be entertaining. Ben Vereen is a man with a cause. Oh, sure, he remains the song-and-dance man, which will be evident this weekend when he appears with Liza Minnelli at the Trump Plaza Hotel & Casino. But when he is not performing, Vereen is deeply involved with his fledgling organization, Celebrities for a Drug-Free America. Vereen knows something about drugs. He was once a cocaine addict. When Vereen addresses groups of youngsters, among the points he stresses is "the amount of time I lost - the time I lost with my family, and, of course, job opportunities.
September 25, 1987 |
Bob Fosse died as he had imagined he would in his semi-autobiographical film, All That Jazz. He died working on a show. In Washington for the opening of the Sweet Charity revival that had ended a Philadelphia run the week before, Fosse rehearsed the company on Wednesday and was on his way to his hotel when he collapsed. A heart attack, the medical people said. Just like that Gideon fellow in All That Jazz. Life and art doing their old dance, leaving the rest of us in shock. The genial Cy Coleman, who wrote the songs for Sweet Charity, said that Fosse would be "remembered for everything: as a human being, as a sensational choreographer.
October 19, 2000 |
Gwen Verdon, the leggy redhead who first purred those words of seductive aggression, "Whatever Lola wants, Lola gets," died yesterday of natural causes at age 75. She died at her daughter's home in Woodstock, Vt., said her agent, Sam Cohen. One of the last, great personalities from Broadway's golden age and winner of four Tony awards, dancer-singer-actress Verdon inspired and originated some of the greatest musical theater roles, all of them women with big hearts and questionable morals: the sexy handmaiden of Satan in Damn Yankees, the love-struck prostitute Charity in Sweet Charity, and the homicidal vaudeville dancer in Chicago.