Category Archives: Broadway Playhouse

Buyer & Cellar celebrates 400th performance!

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Hit show Buyer & Cellar and star Michael Urie celebrated 400 performances after today’s matinee show with a fresh, hot Giordano’s Pizza! Who needs cake when you have Chicago deep dish?

Congratulations to everyone involved with this fantastic show on reaching this milestone!

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Michael Urie Twitter Q&A

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Michael Urie, the award-winning actor from the hit show “Buyer & Cellar”, will be joining Broadway In Chicago for a LIVE Twitter chat on Wednesday, May 21! Want to know what he’s been getting up to while he’s in Chicago? What about how he prepares before going onstage? Ask him on Twitter using #BuyerCHI and he’ll respond to your questions in the hour he’s with us.

We’re incredibly excited to have this talented actor chatting with us and we hope you will have lots of good questions about what it’s like to work in Barbra Streisand’s basement for him!

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BUYER & CELLAR reviews are in…

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It’s a HIT! The critics here in Chicago are loving the show, starring Michael Urie of “Ugly Betty”, which opened on May 8th at the Broadway Playhouse.

“”Buyer and Cellar” manages to probe the darker side of our collective celebrity obsession: our seemingly insatiable need to fully know the very people whom you cannot fully know, the way we mercilessly critique their fish-bowl lives from positions of pathetically limited knowledge and yet also turn to jelly when these living icons afford us the time of day.” – Chris Jones, Chicago Tribune Read more

Jones gives the show 3 1/2 stars and calls it “a lot of laugh-out-loud fun, replete with an engaging performance from Urie”.

“Urie takes us through 100 minutes of rapidfire, emotionally charged but oddly warped “interaction” between employee and star. And as he recounts his own experiences, he also brilliantly conjures the eccentric, needy, intimidating star herself; her movie-star husband James Brolin; Sharon, the all-business manager of Streisand’s estate; and his own boyfriend, Barry” – Hedy Weiss, The Chicago Sun-Times Read more

Weiss says the show is “too good to pass up” and it comes “highly recommended”.

“Urie makes a tour de force tour guide, rendering his tale in fluid, charmingly conspiratorial tones and stocking this Cellar with equal parts in-jokes and insights.” – Kris Vire, Time Out Chicago Read more

Vire calls the show “blisteringly funny” and rates it 4 stars.

“Throughout the ninty-minute work, Mr. Urie masterfully narrates the story then begins inhabiting the different characters that affect each other in profound ways.   The initial interaction between Alex and his employer is hysterical as she tries to barter for “FiFi” the doll whose backstory he instantly creates.  As both begin to get to know each other, a tacit bond of trust starts to form as they each understand the loneliness and isolation the other is feeling.” – Michael Roberts, Showbiz Chicago Read more

Roberts calls Michael Urie’s performance a “tour-de-force” and rates the show “highly recommended”.

“Without the need for countless props, vast set or scenery, any costume changes or a plethora of projections and video, it is Urie alone on stage who seamlessly morphs in and out of character with ease and distinction for each voice and identity.

He has the gift of not only the acting craft, but also as a masterful storyteller able to punctuate with humor and emotion.” – Phil Potempa, Northwest Indiana Times Read more

Potempa says the play “offer[s] insight not only about happiness and the price tag of reality but also lessons about friendship and the fleeting need for fame and recognition by others.”

Make sure you don’t miss out on the opportunity to see the show that has the critics writing raves! Buyer & Cellar performances continue at the Broadway Playhouse at Water Tower Place through June 15, 2014.

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Filed under Broadway In Chicago, Broadway Playhouse, Buyer & Cellar, Chicago Tribune, Chris Jones, Water Tower Place

Curtain Call with Hedy Weiss: Michael Urie

Michael Urie talks to Chicago Sun-Times theater critic Hedy Weiss

Michael Urie spoke to Chicago Sun-Times theater critic Hedy Weiss last month about Barbra, her basement, Brooklyn and being alone onstage for 100 minutes.

Watch the video here!

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Dee Snider on ‘Giuliana & Bill’ Tomorrow Night

Giuliana Rancic auditions for the role of Suzette in ‘Dee Snider’s Rock & Roll Christmas Tale’ on the next episode of Giuliana & Bill, airing tomorrow at 8/7c on the E! Network. Be sure to tune in for a sneak peek at the show that’s a part of Broadway In Chicago’s upcoming Fall 2014 season! Individual tickets are also available for presale using the offer code ROCKON. Get ready to rock this holiday!

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Broadway In Chicago Gift Certificates: The Perfect Present for any Theatre Lover

It’s the time of year when we show our love and appreciation for the people in our lives who mean a lot to us. However, you may not always be certain of the best way to give back to them. If you know someone who is a theatre lover, but aren’t sure which show they’d like to see or when they’ll be free to see a show, Broadway In Chicago gift certificates are a fantastic idea. You can choose from any upcoming event that BIC has announced, which means if you have a Starcatcher or a Fansie in your household you can ensure they’ll have the capacity to purchase tickets when Peter and the Starcatcher or Newsies goes on sale. Not everyone has the chance to see a show when they want to either, so this is a perfect opportunity to give them something special that will make their holiday!

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You can purchase them online HERE  or at any theatre box office during operating hours (call (312) 977-1700 for the current week’s hours):

Cadillac Palace Theatre
151 W. Randolph

Oriental Theatre
24 W. Randolph

Bank of America Theatre
18 W. Monroe

Broadway Playhouse
175 E. Chestnut

You can easily take care of gifts for fans of Broadway, theatre and the arts this holiday season. They’re also a great idea for any special occasion throughout the year.

Also, make sure you continue to check out The 12 Show Business Days of Broadway In Chicago for the chance to win a pair of tickets to an upcoming show and restaurant gift certificate! For the sixth day, we’re ‘presenting’ Rock of Ages, returning March 11-16, 2014 at the Bank of America Theatre.

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Filed under Bank of America Theatre, Broadway In Chicago, Broadway Playhouse, Cadillac Palace Theatre, Newsies, Oriental Theatre, Peter and the Starcatcher, Rock of Ages

Interviews with Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical Cast

Tyrone Phillips (Donner) talks to us about the importance of the message of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and what he hopes kids will take home from this new Christmas classic.

We also find out what it’s like to be a puppeteer in the show from  Emerald City Theatre’s Katie Gonring (Doll, Ensemble)

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical is playing at the Broadway Playhouse at Water Tower Place now through January 5th! Tickets are available here.

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Short and Sweet: The Australian Bee Gees Show

Broadway In Chicago is happy to introduce “Short and Sweet,” a quick view of our shows courtesy of Diana Martinez, who will give you the lowdown on Broadway In Chicago productions from the perspective of an audience member. Diana will discuss the important points of each show with a guest in this special, produced by the talented students and faculty at Tribeca Flashpoint Media Arts Academy.

In this episode, she discusses The Australian Bee Gees Show, playing through August 4 at the Broadway Playhouse. For tickets, click here.

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Short and Sweet: The Australian Bee Gees Show

Broadway In Chicago is happy to introduce “Short and Sweet,” a quick view of our shows courtesy of Diana Martinez, who will give you the lowdown on Broadway In Chicago productions from the perspective of an audience member. Diana has more than 25 years of experience as an entertainment executive, most recently as President of The Second City. She has directed and produced over 40 live Broadway musical theatre shows and has presented more than 350 world-class Broadway national tours, dance, headline comedians and concert. We hope you enjoy this quick insight into our shows, and since this is all about our audience, share your own thoughts with us in the comments below.

The Australian Bee Gees Show a Multi Media Concert

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I may be one of the few people in the world who did not like “Mama Mia” but I felt they forced a weak story in an effort to string together a lot of fabulous hit songs and I think I would have been happier had they just sung the songs rather than give me a weak story line. What you get in the Australian Bee Gee’s show is a great tribute concert of Bee Gee’s hits. As one of my guest critic Eileen Shapiro said, “The show really highlights the amazing body of work Continue reading

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Guest Blog: PINKALICIOUS: The Musical’s Julia P. Gordon

The experience of moving Pinkalicious: The Musical from the Apollo Theatre to our new downtown home at the Broadway Playhouse has been, well, completely pinkatastic. In fact, our entire journey has been pinkerrific. We are coming up on 15 months with this project, and like all toddlers, we continue to be amazed by and learn from the world around us; in our case: the world of the Power of Pink.

One of the most rewarding parts of being in Pinkalicious is, by far, the enthusiastic response we receive from kids. When I first received my script, I was told it was based on a popular children’s book by Elizabeth Kann and Victoria Kann, and that it was currently pretty en vogue amongst 3-8 year olds. I remember thinking, “excellent, kids like it!” but never having heard of the book myself, I didn’t know it was a “thing.”

Oh, how wrong I was.

The moment Lara Mainier first took the stage as Pinkalicious Pinkerton, I was blown away by our audience’s response. They screamed, they cheered, and they called her name. It was sheer ‘Beatlemania,’ and it was overwhelming. Far more impressive is that their enthusiasm hasn’t waned: over a year later and in an entirely different venue, by the reaction of the crowd, every show still feels like a premiere.

But what is it about Pinkalicious? It hit me one day. We pack a lot of content into a 57-minute production.  It is not fluff, but actually chock-full of deeply important messages for our impressionable young audiences.

Pinkalicious: The Musical’s most prominent lessons are the ideas of family, acceptance, unconditional love, friendship, and the importance of keeping promises.  In what world are these topics mere fluff and not some of the most important lessons we can teach? I know I have learned these things from our show, though perhaps in a more behind-the-scenes sense.

My cast is my family. Of all the Pinkalicious cast members, past and present, every one of them has been absolutely wonderful, both as performers and as people. I don’t know an ensemble anywhere else that is as supportive, loving, and considerate as the one I surround myself with every week. We make each other laugh daily, and we accept each other for who we are, no matter how unconventional, no matter how different.

These kids are onto something. The ‘Power of Pink’ is more than just wanting to be pink from head to toe because you like the color. It is about finding yourself, and surrounding yourself with what you love and those who accept you for what you are. The ‘Power of Pink’ is about learning to accept what is different. The ‘Power of Pink’ is about moderation. The ‘Power of Pink’ is about keeping promises. The ‘Power of Pink’ is about forgiving petty disagreements.

Pinkalicious is more than a book and more than a musical. I hope that our audiences have been able to take away some of the same lessons I’ve soaked up from my experience so far. I have learned so much during this 15-month journey, and I have no intention of stopping. When you see us singing “Pink is love, pink is joy, and most of all, we love you,” know that we mean it.

Julia P. Gordon
Assistant Director and Alison in Pinkalicious: The Musical

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