Filichia Features

Victor Hugo is very much in place, but Victor, Hugo and Laverne are gone. We’re talking about one of the fundamental changes between the 1996 animated THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME and the new stage version that officially debuted at the Paper Mill Playhouse on March 15. If you saw the hit film, you may [...]

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Stephen Sondheim has always loved New York, and, for the most part, Gotham has returned the love. Broadway’s greatest composer-lyricist who turns 85 this week has been a New York presence since his lyrics for WEST SIDE STORY reached Broadway in 1957. There has never been a year that a Stephen Sondheim lyric hasn’t had [...]

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When an event announces that it’s “the first annual,” we have to wonder if that’s truth-in-advertising. Yes, every happening has to start somewhere; there was a time when there were the first annual Tonys, Oscars, Emmys and Grammys – and, of course, there have been plenty more. And yet, the world has been littered with [...]

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The invitation for a party being held next Thursday by the Princess Cruises states “Please join us as we announce an industry-first entertainment partnership with the Oscar-winning composer of WICKED, PIPPIN and GODSPELL.” They mean, of course, Stephen Schwartz, who’s celebrating his sixty-seventh birthday on March 6. We can understand why the Princess people touted [...]

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Filichia Features: JOHN & JEN & JOHN

by Peter Filichia on February 27, 2015

in Filichia Features,John & Jen

Here’s what I’ve observed about brothers and sisters. They fight like mad when they’re young, but as time goes by, they start to see the other’s virtues. That leads to their truly loving each other. What makes JOHN & JEN a more compelling musical than most is that it shows the opposite scenario. The 1995 [...]

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So, after seeing a stunning performance of A MAN OF NO IMPORTANCE at New York University, I was suddenly in the company of three men of great importance. Bookwriter Terrence McNally, composer Stephen Flaherty and John Simpkins, the show’s director, surrounded me on a panel I moderated. I commenced by a McNally line in THE [...]

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Audiologists tell us that we lose a little bit of our hearing, however slight, each and every time we hear a loud noise. Those who annually attend Junior Theater Festival hope this isn’t true. Just imagine 4,000-plus kids who scream in the main ballroom of the Waverly Renaissance Hotel in Atlanta. They reach decibel levels [...]

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While there’s been plenty of singing and dancing at Junior Theater Festival in Atlanta, now it’s time for a ton of talk. For after Saturday morning’s presentations of kids performing various Jr. musicals (and an all-too-quick lunch), learned teachers will now learn more at workshops. Many of their shirts and blouses are bisected by red [...]

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The selfies have been taken, the gift shop has been perused, the impromptu dancing to “Under the Sea” has finished, and many a “Break a leg!” has been advised. Now that 8:45 a.m. is near, everyone who’s come to perform this Saturday morn at Junior Theater Festival in Atlanta must get to one of 13 [...]

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Most people like to sleep late on a Saturday morning, but on Jan. 17, more than 4,000 people, ranging from tweens to seniors, are wide awake not long after the crack of Saturday’s dawn. That’s been the case in Atlanta for the last ten years each third Saturday in January. At the Renaissance Waverly Hotel [...]

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