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Posts Tagged ‘“Adaumbelle’s Quest”’

Adam & Adam Pascal

On Monday, January 10, 2011, I had the fortunate experience of interviewing Adam Pascal after his and Anthony Rapp’s concert at Town Hall (click here for my review, Anthony’s interview is coming soon). On-stage Adam knows how to entertain and off-stage is no different. Personable and humorous, Adam was kind enough to take the time to answer my questions.

Best known for playing the original “Roger” in the Tony Award Winning musical “Rent,” which earned Adam a Theatre World Award, an OBIE Award, and a Tony Award Nomination, Adam has gone on to have quite a career! After “Rent,” Adam went on to originate the role of “Radames” in Broadway’s “Aida” by Elton John and Tim Rice and played the “Emcee” in the final cast of “Cabaret” by Kander and Ebb. In 2008, Adam starred alongside Josh Groban and Idina Menzel in London for two sold-out performances of the Tim Rice/ABBA musical “Chess” at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

In addition to theatre, Adam has released three solo albums…”Model Prisoner,” “Civilian,” and his latest CD “Blinding Light” and starred in such movies as “Rent,” “SLC Punk,” “School of Rock,” “Temptation,” and his two most recent films “Falling Star” and “American Primitive.” Adam is also hard at work on a musical for Broadway based on the concept album “Operation Mindcrime,” by the progressive rock band Queensryche.

Currently out on tour with Anthony Rapp in “Adam & Anthony Live” they have one more stop on their US Tour. January 29 at 8pm: The Irvine Barclay Theater in Irvine, CA

1. Who or what inspired you to become a performer? Rock music inspired me to become a performer. I got hooked on rock music at 9 years old and shortly after that discovered I could carry a tune and then it just kind of went from there. I just always loved to sing and the harder I sang and the more blood vessels I burst in my neck trying to sing like all of these heavy metal singers I listened to growing up, the better it felt. It was such a feeling of expression and power. If I was feeling vulnerable, it made me feel strong. If I was feeling weak, it made me feel powerful. It’s always been that for me.

2. What is the highest and lowest note you can sing? Hahaha…I have no idea. I’m so not a schooled singer in that way I couldn’t tell you. I’d just say high and low. Hahaha.

3. Who’s the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? Oh god, there are so many. God, that’s a good question. I would love to work with Jason Robert Brown. We worked a little bit together, but not on a full original production. I love his music and I love his work. I would also love to work with Stephen Sondheim and I would love to work with Michael Greif again. I’m always honored that anybody of note wants to work with me, so I’m open to working with anybody who has an interest in working with me.

4. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? That’s good one too. “Grow up.” I can’t tell you how many countless people I’ve heard that from and it never sticks, but it’s always good advice.

5. What do you get from performing in a solo concert that you don’t get from performing in a Broadway show? For me personally, I’m much more exposed, much more naked. I get to play instruments and get to express myself in what is the most natural way for me to do it. Although, that being said, I’ve always felt a little more comfortable doing musicals than doing a concert and I think that’s because you can hide. You can hide behind a character. You can also hide behind somebody else’s material. I always had this opinion in the back of my mind where I was like, “I know I’m going to go out there and sing well and I’m going to do a good job and if they didn’t like the show, I didn’t write it. There’s a certain security in that. As long as I know people will come away and say that show sucked, but that guy was good, that’s the most I could do.

6. If you couldn’t be doing what you are doing now, what career would you choose? I never had another career path. I never could do anything else, of value. That’s a really hard question to answer because I’d really be lost. I wouldn’t have a career, I would have a job.

7. Favorite way to spend your day off? At home. At home with my kids smoking weed.  Not smoking weed with my kids, but as two separate events.

8. Favorite way to stay in shape? P90X.

9. Boxers or Briefs? Boxer briefs.

10. Favorite website? I love Broadway Stars. My wife always make fun of me because of the name. The name is misleading because it’s not really about Broadway Stars. It’s really an amazing hub for everything theatre related, whether it’s Broadway, Regional, West End. It’s so dense with information, so I check that site at least twice a day.

11. Superman or Wonder Woman? Wonder Woman.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

12. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that nobody knows about? Not really. I wish I did. The only talent I have is what I can do on stage. Anything else I wouldn’t classify as a talent…I can do light carpentry, light electrical, and light plumbing, certainly not talents.

13. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? Hahaha…other than my wife, Jessica Biel, preferably more than once a night. I could dream about her over and over again.

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John Dye, who played “Andrew” on the CBS drama “Touched By An Angel” passed away this past Monday from a heart attack. He was 47 years old.

“Touched By An Angel” was one of my favorite shows in the ’90s and influenced some of my stand-up comedy.

Thank you John Dye for entertaining us and most of all bringing us a little bit of comfort around a difficult subject matter!

Rest in Peace!

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When you leave a theatre smiling and in a good mood that is usually the sign that you’ve had a good time. A good time is exactly what I had when I attended “NEWSical the Musical: Full Spin Ahead” tonight at the Kirk Theatre in NYC.

Highlighting and parodying some of the big news stories from the past year, “NEWSical the Musical” is 90-minutes of enjoyment, humor, and fun! Produced by Tom D’Angora and Elyse Pasquale and written by Rick Crom,”NEWSical” tackles such universal topics as the end of Oprah and Larry King’s shows, Bristol and Sarah Palin, George W. Bush, the crazy JetBlue Flight attendant, sexting, Marriage Equality, airport security, Lipitor, and various celebrity impressions.

Bringing these parodies to life is the extraordinarily talented cast of  Christine Pedi, Christina Bianco, Michael West, and John Walton West. The impressions and comedic chops of each of these performers is amazing! Christina Bianco’s Celine Dion impression is through the roof terrific and if you close your eyes, you’d think Celine was really up on stage. I can’t even describe Christine Pedi as Joan Rivers, Liza Minelli, and Barbra Streisand…unbelievably perfect! Michael West brings down the house as Pee-Wee Herman and George Bush, while John Walton West rocks it out as Morgan Freeman!

If you are looking for a fun night out, then spin on over to “NEWSical the Musical: Full Spin Ahead!” at The Kirk Theatre inside Theatre Row complex (410 West 42nd Street, between 9th & 10th Ave).

Christina Bianco, Michael West, photo by Kevin Thomas Garcia

John Walton West, Christina Bianco, Christine Pedi, photo by Kevin Thomas Garcia

Michael West, photo by Kevin Thomas Garcia

Christine Pedi, Christina Bianco, photo by Kevin Thomas Garcia

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Adam & Anthony Rapp

Adam & Adam Pascal

On Monday, January 10, 2011 I got to attend the opening night of Adam Pascal & Anthony Rapp’s tour “Adam and Anthony Live” at Town Hall in New York City. What a night! Not only did I get to attend the show, but I was lucky enough to attend the post-show reception where I had the opportunity to interview both Adam & Anthony. Their interviews will be posting soon, so stay tuned!

Adam and Anthony performed solo sets as well a joint one, playing a mixture of Broadway, pop, rock, and original tunes. The energy and excitement they each gave on stage ran right through the already electrified audience to make the evening really shine!

Adam and Anthony each have their own individual sound, but when they come together, their sound is golden. Their voices mesh so perfectly together. With great banter of personal stories, Adam and Anthony also know how to entertain the audience in between songs.

If you never had the opportunity to see Adam and Anthony together in the Tony Award Winning Broadway show “Rent,” then this evening together is a sure fire must and if you did get to see them together, then this evening will bring back so many fond memories as well as a bunch of new ones.

Some come on “Out Tonight” for “Adam and Anthony Live” which continues on with the following stops:

January 15 at 7pm: “Landmark on Main Street” in Port Washington, NY

January 29 at 8pm: The Irvine Barclay Theater in Irvine, CA

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This contest is now over and the winner is Will Rivera! Congratulations Will! For those of you who did not win, if you buy a ticket to Ryan’s February 7th concert at Joe’s Pub, you’ll receive a free copy at the show! It’s time  for the first giveaway of the New Year! One lucky fan, at random, will have the chance to win a copy of award winning composer/lyricist Ryan Scott Oliver’s first ever songbook: “Muisc + Lyrics by Ryan Scott Oliver Volume 1!” Head on over to my Facebook Fan Page and “Tag” yourself in the photo for your chance to win! The contest ends Wednesday, January 12 at 10pm! (Don’t forget to attend Ryan’s Joe’s Pub concert on Monday, February 7 at 7pm & 9:30pm)






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If you have not seen the “Billy Elliot,” winner of 10 Tony Awards including “Best Musical,” I’m not sure what you are waiting for! Based on the international smash-hit film of the same name, “Billy Elliot” tells the tale of a boy who discovers his talent for dance that not only inspires his family and community, but changes his life forever!

From the moment the curtain rose, I was engulfed…in the story, the music, and most of all the choreography. This show is fantastic! Featured in this phenomenal cast are Will Chase as “Tony,” Emily Skinner as “Mrs. Wilkinson,” Gregory Jbara as “Dad,” Carole Shelley as “Grandma,” Laura Marie Duncan as “Mum,” Alex Ko as “Billy” (the role of “Billy” alternates between Alex Ko, Jacob Clemente, Joseph Harrington, and Peter Mazurowski), Jake Evan Schwencke as “Michael” (the role of “Michael” alternates between Jake Evan Schwencke and Neil McCaffrey). The cast as a whole is terrific and seems to work really well together.

Alex and Jake’s on-stage chemistry was great, making me feel as though they were really best friends (and who knows, maybe they are). Gregory, Will, Emily, Carole, and Laura, are perfectly cast in their roles and are all given a chance to shine. The real moments of the show come when “Billy” is dancing, for the audience is captivated even more so and many times moved to extra applause and cheers. At a mere 13 years old, Alex can dance! If he can do that at such a young age, I’m really looking forward to seeing where he goes from here. When Stephen Hanna as “Older Billy” and Alex dance together, the stage is really electrified for these two work hand in hand together!

My other favorite moments were during “Dear Billy” (both in Act I and Act II) and getting to hear Laura Marie Duncan’s rich and beautiful voice as well as during “Shine” and “Born to Boogie” when Emily Skinner gets to dazzle the audience with her big powerful vocals she’s so well known for.

For me personally, the greatest moment was getting to see Will Chase, Emily Skinner, Laura Marie Duncan, and Jimmy Smagula back on stage together in the same show. I saw them all in “The Full Monty” in 2001 and I’ve been a fan of theirs ever since! All four of them are just so talented both vocally and acting wise, that audiences are just so lucky to get to see them in “Billy Elliot.”

So if you’re looking for a Broadway show to make you inspired and feel good, then I highly suggest dancing your way to “Billy Elliot” at The Imperial Theatre in New York City (249 West 45th Street).

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Award winning composer/lyricist and fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” participant Ryan Scott Oliver is releasing his first ever songbook, “Music + Lyrics by Ryan Scott Oliver: Volume 1” the only way he knows how: with a concert Monday, February 7, 2011 at Joe’s Pub in NYC at 7pm and 9:30pm!

Come celebrate the release of Ryan’s first ever Songbook with Ryan Scott Oliver himself along with his twisted band, longtime RSO performers/collaborators Alex Brightman, Jay Armstrong Johnson, and Lindsay Mendez, and guest stars to soon be announced!

With three previous sold-out concerts at Joe’s Pub, you’re not going to want to miss out on this one! Ryan’s music is sophisticated, contemporary, and most of all inspiring! Come share the music of this award winning composer/lyricist with his many adoring fans, including yours truly! (Click here for my review of his previous concert)

Every concert attendee will receive a FREE copy of Ryan’s Songbook! So come enjoy an evening of music and delight on Monday, February 7, 2011 at Joe’s Pub in NYC (425 Lafayette Street, NYC) at 7pm and 9:30pm! Get your tickets now…

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