Why hello! You may not know me, and that is a shame, so let’s fix that! My name is Jimmy Brand and I am a Marketing assistant here at Miller Auditorium. Musicals are in my blood! At this point in my life, my friends have to carefully select their sentences for fear of triggering an impromptu concert by yours truly. But in all seriousness, like many teens growing up, musicals were my safe place. From my local community theatre or in the confines of my own room with my current favorite cast album, I could escape my life and become something more. In that magical moment from curtain to curtain anything can happen. Musicals got me through the good and the bad in my life and will remain an integral part of my life. Trying to live my life with out musical theatre would be like trying to take a picture of Patti Lupone during a performance; it would not end well for any parties involved.
For many people like me, there has been a long unfulfilled need to network and meet like-minded people. You know, people, people, who need people… Now, you solve this problem, not like Maria, but this actual problem. Just then, as it was in the beginning, God said, “Cue One Go” and instead of light there was BroadwayCon.
This year saw the inaugural BroadwayCon. It was a three-day theatrical event that brought together theatre fans from all over with leading members of the Broadway community. In other words, comic-con for theatre nerds, and yes I use this term with all the pride I can muster. The event consisted of panels, performances, workshops, photo opportunities and so much more. This event, in addition to letting people in attendance rub elbows with our favorite Broadway stars, served as a platform for people to meet like-minded musical people.
Anthony Rapp, BroadwayCon Co-Creator and well known for his role of Mark Cohen in Rent, the hit musical by Jonathan Larson (and the only reason I know how many minutes are in a year) has said of BroadwayCon:
“I signed on to help create this event not only because it is the first convention for theatre fans, and not only because it is a singular opportunity to spend quality time with those who love Broadway most, but because this is the convention that this community deserves. BroadwayCon was conceived and created by people who live and love theatre… We’re working with causes close to the community’s heart, starting with the fantastic Broadway Cares / Equity Fights AIDS. But most of all, we are creating a way for we who are most passionate about theatre to come together to celebrate this beautiful tradition…”
How wonderful is that! I cannot say enough good things about BroadwayCon. It is a theatre lover’s dream come true, and I hope it remains a tradition for years to come. For many people, like myself, who live, breathe and sleep theatre, it is lovely to see the Broadway community welcoming us with open arms (none of those Evita arms, like real open arms). Broadway will continue to be a catalyst for change, hope and joy in the world, and I for one am excited to see where Broadway will continue to head in the 21st century.
This post brought to you by Theatre references, Broadway Puns and the Oxford comma. [Ed. note: I edited those out. #sorrynotsorry]