Tag: “Motown: The Musical”

African-American Conductors Make History on Broadway

(Photo courtesy of sneakpeekphotography.com)
(Photo courtesy of sneakpeekphotography.com)

A watershed moment, a major milestone, recently took place on Broadway, with the orchestras of four major shows led under the batons of distinguished African-American music directors and conductors. This marks the first time in the history of Broadway that this many African-Americans have been in executive roles in major productions running contemporaneously.

The men in front of the orchestra and behind the music are (L to R) Daryl Waters, music supervisor and conductor for “After Midnight,” recalling Duke Ellington’s years at the Cotton Club; Zane Mark, music director and conductor for “Holler If Ya Hear Me,” inspired by the late hip-hop legend Tupac Shakur; Joseph Joubert, music director and conductor for “Motown the Musical,” about Berry Gordy’s famous music label; and Shelton Becton, conductor, pianist and performer in “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill,” about the legendary Billie Holliday.

article via amsterdamnews.com

Motown Founder Berry Gordy Recipient of Marian Anderson Award

PHILAPELPHIA – A star-studded gala took place last night in Philadelphia to honor Motown Records founder Berry Gordy.  The legendary record producer and songwriter is recipient of the 2013 Marian Anderson Award, which pays homage to critically acclaimed artists who have made a significant impact.  Tuesday night’s gala dinner and award presentation at the Kimmel Center was hosted by comedian-actor Chris Tucker. It featured performances by Boyz II Men, Kool and the Gang as well as Tony Award nominee Brandon Victor Dixon, who stars as Gordy in “Motown The Musical.”

R&B icon Smokey Robinson presented a tribute, along with “Philly Sound” songwriting and producing pioneers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff.  Gordy, a high-school dropout who had a short professional boxing career, started Motown Records in Detroit in 1959. The record company is credited for opening doors for African-American performing artists, launching the careers of everyone from Michael Jackson to Stevie Wonder to Diana Ross & the Supremes.  “This year we will be honoring an individual who created a new genre of American music that is beloved around the world, by young and old, black and white,” said Award chair Pamela Browner White.

Continue reading “Motown Founder Berry Gordy Recipient of Marian Anderson Award”

List Of Black 2013 Tony Award Nominees Ahead Of Tonight’s Broadcast on CBS

“The Trip To Bountiful”‘s Condola Rashad
The 2013 Tony Awards will be broadcast on CBS tonight, starting at 8pm, with Neil Patrick Harris hosting. Here’s a list of the African-Americans up for awards tonight:

– Cicely Tyson, nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play (A Trip To Bountiful)

– Billy Porter, nominated for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical (Kinky Boots)

– Valisia LeKae, nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical (Motown The Musical),

– Patina Miller, nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical (Pippin)

– Courtney B. Vance, nominated for Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play (Lucky Guy)

– Shalita Grant, nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play (Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike)

– Condola Rashad, nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play (The Trip to Bountiful)

– Charl Brown, nominated for Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical (Motown, The Musical)

 Keala Settle, nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical (Hands on a Hardbody)

– George C. Wolfe, nominated for Best Direction of a Play (Lucky Guy)

For the full list of all the nominees, see below: Continue reading “List Of Black 2013 Tony Award Nominees Ahead Of Tonight’s Broadcast on CBS”

Cicely Tyson, Patina Miller, Valisia LeKae and Courtney B. Vance Nominated for Tony Awards

Patina Miller stars in “Pippin”on Broadway. (AP Photo/Boneau/Bryan-Brown, Joan Marcus)

Cicely Tyson’s return to Broadway indeed proved “Bountiful,” as she is among the contenders for best actress in a play for her starring role in “The Trip to Bountiful.’’  The others in Tyson’s category are Laurie Metcalf for “The Other Place,’’ Amy Morton for “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?,’’ Kristine Nielsen for “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike,’’ and Holland Taylor for “Ann.’’trip-to-bountiful  

The revival of “Pippin” “Motown: The Musical” each garnered several awards, among them nominations for their respective lead actresses, Patina Miller and Valisia LeKae.  Courtney B. Vance also garnered a nomination for his supporting role in “Lucky Guy,” as did Tyson’s “Bountiful” co-star Condola Rashad for hers.

The full list of nominees is below:

Best play
“The Assembled Parties” by Richard Greenberg
“Lucky Guy” by Nora Ephron
“The Testament of Mary” by Colm Toibin
“Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike” by Christopher Durang

Best musical
“Bring It On, The Musical”
“A Christmas Story, The Musical”
“Kinky Boots, The Musical”
“Matilda, The Musical”

Best book of a musical
“A Christmas Story, The Musical” Joseph Robinette
“Kinky Boots” Harvey Fierstein
“Matilda, The Musical” Dennis Kelly
Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella” Douglas Carter Beane

Best revival of a play
“Golden Boy” Producers: Lincoln Center Theater, André Bishop, Bernard Gersten
“Orphans” 
“The Trip to Bountiful” 
“Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”

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Best revival of a musical
“Annie” 
“The Mystery of Edwin Drood” 
“Pippin” 
“Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella” 

Best original score (music and/or lyrics) written for the theatre
“A Christmas Story, The Musical” Music and Lyrics: Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
“Hands on a Hardbody” Music: Trey Anastasio and Amanda Green Lyrics: Amanda Green
“Kinky Boots” Music and Lyrics: Cyndi Lauper
“Matilda, The Musical” Music and Lyrics: Tim Minchin

Best performance by an actor in a leading role in a play
Tom Hanks, “Lucky Guy”
Nathan Lane, “The Nance” 
Tracy Letts, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” 
David Hyde Pierce, “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike” 
Tom Sturridge, “Orphans”

Best performance by an actress in a leading role in a play
Laurie Metcalf, “The Other Place”
Amy Morton, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”
Kristine Nielsen, “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike”
Holland Taylor, “Ann”
Cicely Tyson, “The Trip to Bountiful”

Best performance by an actor in a leading role in a musical
Bertie Carvel, “Matilda, The Musical”
Santino Fontana, “Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella”
Rob McClure, “Chaplin”
Billy Porter, “Kinky Boots”
Stark Sands, “Kinky Boots”

PHOTOS: Hollywood stars on stage

Best performance by an actress in a leading role in a musical
Stephanie J. Block, “The Mystery of Edwin Drood”
Carolee Carmello, “Scandalous”
Valisia LeKae, “Motown, The Musical”
Patina Miller, “Pippin”
Laura Osnes, “Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella”

Best performance by an actor in a featured role in a play
Danny Burstein, “Golden Boy”
Richard Kind, “The Big Knife”
Billy Magnussen, “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike”
Tony Shalhoub, “Golden Boy”
Courtney B. Vance, “Lucky Guy”

Best performance by an actress in a featured role in a play
Carrie Coon, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”
Shalita Grant, “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike”
Judith Ivey, “The Heiress”
Judith Light, “The Assembled Parties”
Condola Rashad, “The Trip to Bountiful”

Best performance by an actor in a featured role in a musical
Charl Brown, “Motown, The Musical”
Keith Carradine, “Hands on a Hardbody”
Will Chase, “The Mystery of Edwin Drood”
Gabriel Ebert, “Matilda, The Musical”
Terrence Mann, “Pippin”
Best performance by an actress in a featured role in a musical
Annaleigh Ashford, “Kinky Boots”
Victoria Clark, “Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella”
Andrea Martin, “Pippin”
Keala Settle, “Hands on a Hardbody”
Lauren Ward, “Matilda, The Musical”

Best scenic design of a play
John Lee Beatty, “The Nance”
Santo Loquasto, “The Assembled Parties”
David Rockwell, “Lucky Guy”
Michael Yeargan, “Golden Boy”

PHOTOS: 2013 Tonys top nominees

Best scenic design of a musical
Rob Howell, “Matilda, The Musical”
Anna Louizos, “The Mystery of Edwin Drood”
Scott Pask, “Pippin”
David Rockwell, “Kinky Boots”

Best costume design of a play
Soutra Gilmour, “Cyrano de Bergerac”
Ann Roth, “The Nance”
Albert Wolsky, “The Heiress”
Catherine Zuber, “Golden Boy”

Best costume design of a musical
Gregg Barnes, “Kinky Boots”
Rob Howell, “Matilda, The Musical”
Dominique Lemieux, “Pippin”
William Ivey Long, “Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella”

Best lighting design of a play
Jules Fisher & Peggy Eisenhauer, “Lucky Guy”
Donald Holder, “Golden Boy”
Jennifer Tipton, “The Testament of Mary”
Japhy Weideman, “The Nance”

Best lighting design of a musical
Kenneth Posner, “Kinky Boots”
Kenneth Posner, “Pippin”
Kenneth Posner, “Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella”
Hugh Vanstone, “Matilda, The Musical”

RELATED: Tony nomination snubs

Best sound design of a play
John Gromada, “The Trip to Bountiful”
Mel Mercier, “The Testament of Mary”
Leon Rothenberg, “The Nance”
Peter John Still and Marc Salzberg, “Golden Boy”

FULL COVERAGE: 2013 Tony nominations

Best sound design of a musical
Jonathan Deans & Garth Helm, “Pippin”
Peter Hylenski, “Motown, The Musical”
John Shivers, “Kinky Boots”
Nevin Steinberg, “Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella”

Best direction of a play
Pam MacKinnon, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”
Nicholas Martin, “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike”
Bartlett Sher, “Golden Boy”
George C. Wolfe, “Lucky Guy”

Best direction of a musical
Scott Ellis, “The Mystery of Edwin Drood”
Jerry Mitchell, “Kinky Boots”
Diane Paulus, “Pippin”
Matthew Warchus, “Matilda, The Musical”

Best choreography
Andy Blankenbuehler, “Bring It On: The Musical”
Peter Darling, “Matilda, The Musical”
Jerry Mitchell, “Kinky Boots”
Chet Walker, “Pippin”

Best orchestrations
Chris Nightingale, “Matilda, The Musical”
Stephen Oremus, “Kinky Boots”
Ethan Popp & Bryan Crook, “Motown, The Musical”
Danny Troob, “Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella”

Recipients of awards and honors in non-competitive categories
Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre
Bernard Gersten
Paul Libin
Ming Cho Lee

Regional Theatre Award
Huntington Theatre Company, Boston

Isabelle Stevenson Award
Larry Kramer

Tony Honor for Excellence in the Theatre
Career Transition for Dancers
William Craver
Peter Lawrence
The Lost Colony
The four actresses who created the title role of “Matilda, The Musical” on Broadway – Sophia
Gennusa, Oona Laurence, Bailey Ryon and Milly Shapiro

article by Lori Lakin Hutcherson

Berry Gordy to be Honored by Songwriters Hall of Fame

Berry Gordy poses in the press room during the 27th Annual Rock And Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at Public Hall on April 14, 2012 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images)

Berry Gordy poses in the press room during the 27th Annual Rock And Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at Public Hall on April 14, 2012 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images)

As the head of Motown, Gordy helped establish careers and hits for Diana Ross and the Supremes, Stevie Wonder, The Temptations, and Michael Jackson and The Jackson Five. A Broadway musical about Gordy’s life, “Motown: The Musical,” debuted this week.  Previously announced inductees include Tony Hatch, Mick Jones and Lou Gramm, Holly Knight, JD Souther, Steven Tyler and Joe Perry.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press via thegrio.com