As the "occupy" movement spreads worldwide to bring light to the needs and concerns of the "99%," Disney brings its newest stage musical to the Broadway theatre district with Newsies the Musical. Based on a flop of a film of the same name, Newsies has been reincarnated with a powerhouse creative team of Academy Award and Tony Award winners and a cast singing the anthems of "down with the 'Man.'"
Newsies was inspired by the real-life protest and revolution led by Kid Blank during the "Newsboy Strike of 1899." Kid Blink and his band of not-so-merry orphans and runaway newsies stood up to publishing giants Joseph Pulitzer, William Randolph Hearst and other powerful newspaper titans.
Set in turn-of-the-century New York City, Newsies is the larger-than-life tale of Jack Kelly, a hard-working newsboy and leader of a rag-tag bunch of teen "newsies," newspaper boys. Kelly dreams of a better life away from his current hardship, but finds that to be impossible when publishing magnates raise distribution prices, cutting into the meager wage earned by Kelly and the Newsies. Kelly fights back and rallies New York's newspaper boys to stand up and speak out against the money-hungry corporate executives.
Newsies, the new American musical played a critically-hailed run at Paper Mill Playhouse in the Fall of 2011, prior to its Broadway engagement. The show features music by eight-time Academy Award winner Alan Menken who also composed The Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, Sister Act, and this season's Leap of Faith. Lyrics are by Jack Feldman. The show's book was written by four-time Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein who penned La Cage aux Folles and Torch Song Trilogy.
The show held its first Broadway preview on March 15, 2012, and officially opened on March 29, 2012 at the Nederlander Theatre. Newsies the Musical is a strictly limited run, with a final performance set for June 10th. Produced on Broadway by Disney Theatrical Productions, Newsies is directed by Tony Award nominee Jeff Calhoun, who also directed the revival of Big River, and dance numbers are choreographed by Tony Award nominee Christopher Gattelli, who worked on the acclaimed Broadway revival of Rodgers and Hammerstein's South Pacific.
Starring in Newsies as the charismatic "Jack Kelly" is Jeremy Jordan, who appeared opposite Dolly Parton and Queen Latifah in the gospel hit, Joyful Noise, and the recent Broadway production of if-you-blinked-you-missed-it Bonnie and Clyde. His other Broadway credits include West Side Story as "Tony" and Rock of Ages.
Andrew Keenan-Bolger plays "Crutchie" and has been seen on Broadway in Mary Poppins, Seussical, The Beauty and the Beast, and A Christmas Carol. He appeared in the first national tours of Spelling Bee, The Grinch, Mary Poppins, and Ragtime.
Playing "Henry," Kyle Coffman was been seen on Broadway in West Side Story and in the film Someday This Pain Will Be Useful To You. He performed around the world with the Joffrey Ballet Ensemble, Peridance Company, and NYTB. Ephraim M. Sykes plays "Mush," having been seen on Broadway in Memphis and The Little Mermaid, Off-Broadway as "Benny" in RENT, 1st revival, as well as The Wiz and the new musical by Pulitzer Prize winner Tom Kitt Bring It On. As "Spot Conlin," Tommy Bracco makes his Broadway debut.
Newsies the Musical plays Broadway's Nederlander Theatre located at 208 W 41st Street for a limited run through June 10, 2012. More information and tickets are available through the show's website.