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Perez Reviews: Giant

Giant was one of the shows we were most looking forward to seeing during our extended stay in New York City, and it also ended up being one of our biggest letdowns.

Sigh.

They can't all be winners!

The musical, a stage adaptation of the iconic film/book, is currently playing at The Public Theater. It has music and lyrics by Michael John LaChiusa, whose Wild Party is one of our favorite musicals. Unfortunately, the songs are the Achilles heel of Giant. They are mediocre and meander. Barely memorable and not specific.

Set in Texas during the early 20th century, the musical fails to capture the sonic landscape of that era and area. What could have been a rich tapestry of Mexican, American, Mexican-American and Tejano songs instead was very average musical theater filler. Generic and uninspired.

And LaChiusa's lackluster score was not helped by the bookwriter Sybille Pearson's script. The show was long and it FELT long!

There were too many distractions and too many puzzling moments. "Why did they feel the need to do that?," we kept asking ourselves. Like when the protagonist's sister dies and then comes back in Act 2 to sing a duet with him.

REALLY????

That did not happen in the movie or book - and it didn't need to happen in the musical!

The one saving grace Giant has is its female lead. Kate Baldwin delivers a masterful and MUST-see performance in the Elizabeth Taylor role. Kate Baldwin is a superstar!!!!

We have literally seen AT LEAST over 40 shows since we've been in New York City, and Kate Baldwin in Giant delivers the most spectacular performance we have seen in anything - musical or play. She is not acting in this role. She is being. She is more than present! She's living and giving and transcending the tepid source material. If this were on Broadway, she would win the Tony!

And her voice! Oh, that voice! So exquisite! Soaring! Angelic! With bottom! And soul! STUNNING!

We recommend seeing Giant just for her performance alone! Baldwin is so good, in fact, that she makes everybody else look bad! No one rises to her level - or anywhere near!

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Perez Reviews: Murder Ballad

With a title like Murder Ballad, you'd expect that that show to be HIGH STAKES! Unfortunately, the musical currently playing at Manhattan Theater Club does not live up to its title. Complicated Love Story would have been a more appropriate title and worked more in the show's favor.

Murder Ballad has a lot going for it, but it also has a lot that hinders the production.

The choice to make the show completely sung through - like an opera - made it really difficult to connect with the characters and their motivations. If the show is ever done again, we'd strongly suggest adding a book!

The best thing Murder Ballad has going for it are the songs - by Juliana Nash and Julia Jordon. And for a musical, the songs being your strongest attribute is a really good thing! Having said that, though, while the songs are really really good - they did start to sound a bit the same. And, with no dialogue, the songs started to blend into one long song. In addition to adding dialogue, we'd recommend future incarnations of the show have a band with more instruments and different/better orchestrations.

The cast, featuring Will Swenson and Karen Olivo, all delivered solid performances. And, especially enjoyable was the direction by Trip Cullman and his use of the great and intimate theater space, as well as the choreography by Doug Varone.

If you're a fan of Jason Robert Brown and his sensibility and go into Murder Ballad with that in mind, then you will find the show a very enjoyable experience!

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Perez Encourages You To Vote - In Song!

Check out Vote, a hilarious song featuring Perez and the cast of NEWSical: The Musical (above)!

Such fun memories!

Like! Share!

Vote!!!

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Jake Gyllenhaal Lets An Englishman Enter Him During His New York Stage Debut!

jake-gyllenhaal-theater-if-there is i-havent-found-it yet-opening-night

Bravo! Bravo!!

What a commanding opening night for the off-Broadway delight, If There is I Haven't Found It Yet!

OK, it's confession time. Admittedly, we haven't seen the play yet but, come on, Jake Gyllenhaal!! On stage!!

In our eyes, the handsomely charming thespian from Brokeback Mountain and City Slickers can do no wrong!

We wish we knew how to quit him, LOLz!!

Jakey G even busted out an English accent for his debut on the New York stage and, by most accounts, he was spot on!

Cheerio, guv'nor! Good show!

Ch-ch-check him and the other stars of the play out (below) as they take curtain calls and pose for post-premiere photos!!

[Image via Joseph Marzullo/WENN.]

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A Very NEWSical Affair

Perez Hilton NEWSical opening night Perez Hilton and the NEWSical cast

Monday night we made our professional New York stage debut in the award-winning off-Broadway musical NEWSical and it was…. a dream come true!

This whole experience could not have been any more of a pleasure and every single person involved with the show has made us feel so welcome and appreciated and part of their family.

It was a real treat to get to celebrate with lots of friends, including Cheyenne Jackson, Michelle Trachtenberg, Sia, Natalia Kills, Countess Luanne, Kelly Cutrone, Carson Kressley, Martin Kierszenbaum, Pia Glenn, Ryan Raftery, Randy Rainbow and especially Momma Perez, who was very proud of her son.

We came to New York City in 1996 to study acting at NYU and this is a full-circle moment for us!

We especially want to thank again Tom D'Angora, NEWSical's amazing producer, for having the vision and faith that Perez could not just do it but do it well. We will be forever grateful!

Perez is only in the show until October 7th, so if you haven't done so yet…

CLICK HERE to buy your tickets to NEWSical now!!!
CLICK HERE to buy your tickets to NEWSical now!!!
CLICK HERE to buy your tickets to NEWSical now!!!
CLICK HERE to buy your tickets to NEWSical now!!!
CLICK HERE to buy your tickets to NEWSical now!!!

[Images via WENN.]

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Disney's Newsies - starring Perez!!!!!

Yes, it's really happening!!!!!

Perez! On Broadway! In Newsies!!!!

Check out the excitement - and dancing gay boys - above!!!

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Perez Is Coming To Broadway Really Close To Broadway!!!!

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PEREZ HILTON JOINs the CAST OF the OFF-BROADWAY sensation, NEWSical the Musical

New York, NY: The internet's most notorious gossip columnist Perez Hilton joins the cast of the uproarious off-Broadway musical revue, NEWSical the Musical, for four weeks only beginning Saturday, September 8th. From John Travolta, Anderson Cooper, Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes to the national fight for marriage equality and the 2012 Presidential Election, NEWSical the Musical sets all of today’s biggest news and pop culture headlines to song. With Hilton’s arrival, award-winning composer-lyricist Rick Crom will add new satirical spoofs to the show including a Chick-fil-A number and a song about the phenomenon of Perez Hilton that will be performed by the man himself. Perez Hilton will begin preview performances on Saturday, September 8th. The opening night press performance will be Monday, September 17th.

"Dreams do come true, if you believe. And I BELIEVE, big time!”, says Perez Hilton from his Los Angeles home. “I am beyond thrilled, nervous and zen about making my New York theater debut. It's gonna be a wild ride in a show that guarantees to put smiles on people's faces. It will be no holds barred! Pure unadulterated fun! I expect to have the time of my life and look forward to hugging happy theatergoers after each show!”

“What do you do when your show needs to sell tickets? You bring in a celebrity,” says producer Tom D’Angora of his decision to add Perez Hilton to NEWSical the Musical. “Perez Hilton was the perfect choice because our show is basically the musical version of his highlarious website. If you are a daily reader of Perez like I've been since 2007, you know how funny and charismatic he is. We couldn't be more excited to welcome him as the newest member of our talented cast.”

NEWSical the Musical is the ever-evolving, completely un-sanitized musical mockery of all the news that’s fit to spoof. The Associated Press calls it “The Daily Show set to music!” The show was named Best New Musical of 2011 by the Off Broadway Alliance. Infectious melodies, razor-sharp lyrics, biting satire and more unpredictability than a Courtney Love tweet make NEWSical a laugh-filled, high octane musical revue of all the most talked-about headlines of the day.
In addition to Perez Hilton, NEWSical the Musical features Christine Pedi (Forbidden Broadway, Talk Radio), Christina Bianco (Drama Desk nominee, Forbidden Broadway), Michael West (Forbidden Broadway, When Pigs Fly), Tommy Walker (Evil Dead The Musical), Amy Griffin (How the Grinch Stole Christmas) and Ryan Knowles (host of Nickelodeon’s ME:TV).
Rick Crom has appeared on Broadway in Urinetown, Footloose and The Goodbye Girl and on FX’s critically - acclaimed series “Louie” starring comedian Louis C.K. NEWSical is directed by Mark Waldrop (When Pigs Fly, My Deah, Inventing Avi, Papermill Playhouse’s Gypsy). Rounding out the creative team are Ed Goldschneider (music director), Jason Courson (set designer), Josh Starr (lighting designer) and Scott Delacruz (stage manager).

Newsical the Musical is produced by Tom D’Angora (Naked Boys Singing!, ICONS, Broadway Diva Christmas, Divas I’ve Done).
NEWSical the Musical plays at Theatre Row (410 West 42nd Street). Tickets are $85 - $110 and can be purchased through Telecharge.com or by calling (212) 279-4200 or (800) 432-7250. For performance schedule and more information visit www.NEWSicalthemusical.com.

About Perez Hilton
Since launching the celebrity entertainment blog PerezHilton.com in 2004, Perez Hilton has created a media empire that spans across online, publishing, television, radio, music and live events. In addition to his PerezHilton.com blog, which has become one of the leading sources for celebrity news amassing over 300 million hits a month, Hilton runs five additional digital properties focused on fashion, fitness, family, animals and a mobile app. Hilton has published three books, hosted and appeared on numerous television programs and has taken on the role of a music manager for such as recordings artists as IM5, CJ Baran, Kalie Shorr, VanJess and MattyB, among others. Hilton also created the hugely successfully music event series “One Night In…” in 2008, which features up-and-coming and top musical acts. On radio, Hilton is host to the twice-daily celebrity and entertainment news feature “Radio Perez” and most recently, “Perez Nights Live.” Hilton was named the #1 Web Celeb in 2007, 2008, and 2009 by Forbes Magazine, one of the 15 most influential Hispanics in the US by People en Espanol, the 2009 Hispanic of the Year by Hispanic Magazine, one of Time Magazine’s ‘100 Most Influential People of 2007’ and as a tastemaker, Newsweek has compared his influence on the music scene to Oprah’s book club. Visit Perez Hilton online at www.perezhilton.com. Follow Perez Hilton on Facebook and Twitter at www.facebook.com/PerezHilton and @perezhilton. 

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