By: Tracey Lawie
Every spring, I hear the call of the Big Apple….the annual Broadway League conference where performing art centers from across the country converge in New York City to network, learn the latest trends in marketing and Broadway buying behaviors, take in the latest Broadway shows and get to interact with the creative teams and actors of various shows.
My week started off with bang – I got to see the revival of Miss Saigon on my first night. A young newcomer plays the lead, Kim, and hers is a special story. Eva Noblezada was a 2013 finalist for Best performance by an Actress at the Jimmy Awards (the National High School Musical Theatre Awards). There, she caught the eye of New York casting director Tara Rubin who was in the audience. She was so moved by Noblezada’s performance that she spoke with her afterwards and contacted theatrical producer Cameron Mackintosh who was preparing of the West End production of Miss Saigon at the time. Long story short…Noblezada was cast in the role of Kim and made her debut in the West End in 2014 and now does 8 shows a week on Broadway.
Other shows I took in during the week include The School of Rock (my personal favorite), The Great Comet of 1812 (this show has the most interesting staging – the audience is on it and fully interactive throughout the show), A Bronx Tale (a lovely musical that reminded me a lot of Jersey Boys) and Beautiful: The Carole King Story (I dare you not to sing along with every song).
It was a fantastic week and I look forward to implementing some of the things I learned for our next season. And, hopefully, you all will get a chance to see these great shows too when they tour and come through Miller in the years to come.
On a personal note…one highlight of the week was getting to meet Josh Groban who is currently starring in The Great Comet. He is an amazingly nice person!