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Broadway Babies News Archive

Quack, Quack, Closed! Duck Dynasty Musical To End It's Las Vegas Run Early!

| Filed under: Broadway BabiesSin CityDuck Dynasty

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Guess the Robertson family's controversial ways finally caught up with their overall brand! Bwhaha!

The Duck Commander Musical, based on the outspoken brood from the A&E series Duck Dynasty, will end its run after less than two months of performances in Las Vegas at Rio Hotel and Casino.

The last official "quack" you'll hear from the stage comes May 17 — though tickets were originally on sale through June 30.

[ Related: Willie Robertson Reflects On His Dad's Anti-Gay Comments ]

Here's what a rep for the production had to say about the news:

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Perez Reviews: Fun Home

| Filed under: Broadway BabiesPerez Reviews

Fun Home is a new Broadway musical that tells a very personal story about family and loss. The show is based on the book of the same name, about a lesbian comic book artist coming to terms with her father's death. Her father was a very complex man and this is a complex show. Not your typical Broadway fare!

It's extremely well done and satisfying, though also a bit frustrating - just like the story and the main character's dad.

Michael Cerveris gives a powerful and nuanced performance as the father, a conflicted English teacher who runs a funeral parlor out of his home - aka the "fun home" - and who moonlights in home restoration and homosexuality.

The subject matter is meaty and the one major complaint we had with the show is that this very complex story (told in a very complex and multilayered way - from the present, the past and the very distant past) was crammed into one act. While we are big fans of the one act musical, not every show benefits from that.

While the show is mainly about Alison and her father, Fun Home would be even better if some of the supporting characters were a bit more fleshed out - ESPECIALLY the mother! Judy Kuhn does a great job as the mom, but we wish we knew more about her and what made her tick. Her story is so tied to that of her husband, who cheated on her with countless men, and her daughter.

In real life, Alison Bechdel, whose book Fun Home is based on, wrote a second illustrated memoir all about her mother. We wish some of those elements could have been incorporated into the musical, so that it could feel like a more complete experience.

As it is, the book of the musical, written by Lisa Kron, poses more questions than it answers. This is not a show where everything is going to be spoon-fed for the audience or wrapped up with a bow on top. Like we said, not your typical Broadway fare.

Thankfully, director Sam Gold does a great job of making this show, which began at the Public Theater downtown, feel like a Broadway production. The set, by David Zinn, makes THE MOST of the Circle In The Square Theater and is used in very unexpected and effective ways.

The music, by Jeanine Tesori, with lyrics by Kron, is great.

And the very young and very talented Sydney Lucas, one of three actresses simultaneously playing the lead character, Alison, gives an outstanding performance. DAZZLING! She steals the show!

This little girl is such a star!!!

We wish things ended a bit clearer with Fun Home.

What's the takeaway? What's the message? What are we supposed to feel?

But…

That's life! You don't always get what you want. And things aren't always so cut and dry.

Fun Home definitely got us thinking - and feeling!

Quite a great show!

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Darren Criss' First Night In Hedwig And The Angry Inch Was A Success & He Couldn't Have Been More Delicious!

| Filed under: Broadway BabiesDarren CrissNew York

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SLAY!

Darren Criss had his opening night as the star of the rock musical Hedwig And The Angry Inch on Wednesday in New York, and he was fantastic!

And as you can see in the pic (above) Darren looked like perfection for the beginning of the limited 12-week engagement run, where he plays the frontman, Hedwig, of an East German rock band who assumes a female persona after a botched sex change operation and breaks down a lot of fourth walls in the play in order to share his story!

[ Related: Kendall Jenner Sees Transgender Musical Hedwig And The Angry Inch With Some Famous Friends! ]

Believe it or not though, Mr. Criss was nervous! Following the performance at the Belasco Theatre he tweeted:

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Helen Mirren's Costars Bruce Willis & Mary Louise Parker Announce The Tony Award Nominations — Hmm, We Wonder Why! See The Full List HERE!

| Filed under: Bruce WillisBroadway BabiesKristin ChenowethBradley CooperHelen MirrenCarey MulliganElisabeth Moss

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The Tony Awards are coming, and they're pretty star-studded!

The nominees were announced by Bruce Willis and Mary Louise Parker, appropriate given their RED costar Helen Mirren is nominated for Best Leading Actress for her role in The Audience!

[ Related: Bruce Willis Will Be Making His Broadway Debut ]

Other movie and TV stars with nods include Bradley Cooper for The Elephant Man, Carey Mulligan for Skylight, and Elisabeth Moss for The Heidi Chronicles.

You can find out who wins when the ceremony airs on CBS June 7, hosted by Alan Cumming and (current nominee for On The Twentieth Century) Kristin Chenoweth.

But you can see the whole list of nominees right now (below)!

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Fresh Off Of Bruce Jenner's Reveal, Kendall Jenner Sees Transgender Musical Hedwig And The Angry Inch With Some Famous Friends!

| Filed under: Broadway BabiesNeil Patrick HarrisDarren CrissKendall JennerCara DelevingneBruce JennerTransgender

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We love that she's trying to soak up some trans* culture!

Bruce Jenner has been the story of the year since he came out as transgender on Friday, and his daughter Kendall is showing her continued support through her taste in theater.

That's because the 19-year-old model was spotted at Hedwig and the Angry Inch in New York on Saturday… but she wasn't alone.

We're hearing that Kendall attended the transgendered-themed musical with her bestie Cara Delevingne and her girlfriend St. Vincent!

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Perez Reviews: The Visit

| Filed under: Broadway BabiesPerez Reviews

Thursday night saw the opening of the last new show of the current Broadway season, Kander & Ebb's long-in-the-works The Visit.

The show was originally supposed to reach Broadway in 2001 as a starring vehicle for Angela Lansbury. Life happened. Lansbury dropped out. Chita Rivera stepped in. And 14 years later it finally debuts in New York!

The Visit reteams the iconic composing duo of Kander & Ebb with frequent collaborator Rivera and playwright Terrence McNally, both of whom worked on Kiss Of The Spider Woman with them.

Like many Kander & Ebb shows (Cabaret, Chicago), The Visit explores dark themes.

A rich old woman comes back to her hometown after being gone a lifetime to avenge her past!

That rich old woman is the rich in talent Rivera, who at 82 years old may be making her final appearance on Broadway. And it is quite the star turn for her!

We last saw her on the stage in The Mystery Of Edwin Drood, which was not a good vehicle for her. The Visit, after many revisions throughout the years and finally being (smartly) trimmed down to it's current state of performed without intermission, is custom-tailored for Rivera.

This is Chita at her best! There's even a little dancing!

This old broad's still got it!

The production is on the smaller scale of Broadway musicals, but it is beautifully done by director John Doyle.

The show is a lot like Chicago in that it lives in an alternate world. It's based on reality but the whole affair is rather surreal. We kept waiting for the end and a reveal that it was all a dream, which never happened.

In addition to Rivera, the real star of the show is the music.

Fred Ebb may no longer be with us but John Kander is - he was at the opening! - and these songs they have left behind are of the highest quality.

Oftentimes the later work of composers isn't as good as their younger output. Thankfully, The Visit is not that case! These songs are some of their best!

The cast is mostly great, though we wish they would have chosen a better vocalist as Rivera's main love interest.

And kudos to newcomer John Riddle, who has a bright future ahead of him - and not just because he was so pretty to look at. He was captivating!

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Perez Reviews: Something Rotten

| Filed under: Personally PerezBroadway Babies

Casey Nicholaw knows how to build a production number!

And the new Broadway musical he just directed, Something Rotten, is filled with them!

In fact, on opening night the show got a standing ovation after a song in Act 1 and a second one even before the end of Act 2!

The story, on the surface, is about Shakespeare and some rival writers - but it's really about the creation of a musical and a love letter to the theater.

It's jam-packed with inside jokes and lots of razzle dazzle!

Huge sets. Huge cast. Lots of tap dancing!

Great performances from all involved.

Very good songs from the Kirkpatrick brothers, Karey and Wayne, making their Broadway debut.

A very funny book by Karey and John O'Farrell. Perhaps a bit too funny!

If there is one flaw with the show is that it's all fluff and not enough stuff. There is very little heart in the show, even though there are some attempts at a couple of love stories.

The emphasis here is clearly on the funny. And that's not a bad thing. Sometimes you just want to laugh!

It worked very well for Book Of Mormon - also directed by Nicholaw - and Something Rotten is very similar to that!

It aims to please and it succeeds!

Super well done!!

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