Who is Who in WICKED’s road to fame

Wicked is easily one of the most successful musicals to hit
Broadway in the past decade. It consistently plays to sold out crowds in New
York, and supports two national tours as well as a trio of international
runs. Truthfully, its hard to think of Broadway these days without the
witches of Oz. With all of this success, let’s take a look at actors that
Wicked has made famous over the years.

Kristin Chenoweth – No list would be complete without the original
Glinda. The role wasn’t Chenoweth’s first flirtation with fame, as she
locked down her only Tony Award for her performance as Sally in You’re a
Good Man, Charlie Brown
in 1999. In June 2003, she followed
Wicked to San Francisco for its tryout at the Curran Theatre then
hopped back to New York for its official opening in October. After a year as
Galinda, she bid ado to the part. In the eight years since, she has been
involved in several Broadway, television and film projects. She’s perhaps
best known for her recurring role on Glee as April Rhodes as well
as the critically acclaimed, yet short lived television series Pushing
. She returned to Broadway in 2006 with the revival of The
Apple Tree
and again in 2010 opposite Sean Hayes in Promises,
. She has four albums to her name with her most recent being a
country turn on Some Lessons Learned.

Idina Menzel – Chenoweth’s cohort in the original production of
Wicked, Idina Menzel is perhaps best known for the work she did
prior to Wicked in Broadway’s Rent. After an Off-Broadway and
Broadway run that stretched over a year and a half, she gathered her
accolades in search of other projects. Menzel was also part of the original
Wicked cast who enthralled San Fran audiences before storming
Broadway. After getting the Tony nomination for Rent, she won Best
Leading Actress in a Musical for her work as a green girl in
Wicked. Her portrayal of Elphaba beat out Chenoweth for the high
honor. She also opened Wicked on the West End in 2006 when she
reprised her role. Menzel has gone on to star in the Rent motion
picture. Though she has had supporting roles on Glee as well as an
array of film projects (Enchanted, Kissing Jessica Stein),
her key successes in the years since Wicked have come through recording and
touring. She’s played several sold out tours supporting her four album
releases. She’s shared the stage with the likes of Josh Groban, sang
“Defying Gravity” for the president, and played with some of the world’s
most prestigious orchestras. Even with all that stuffing her resume, many
women will always see her crowning achievement as snagging her husband, her
sexy Rent co-star Taye Diggs. As an interesting side note, Diggs
briefly subbed in as Fiyero in 2003.

Megan Hilty – Fresh out of Carnegie Mellon, Hilty started as a
standby for Galinda before taking over the role in Wicked on
Broadway in May 2005. She stayed on for a year before departing to take
Wicked on the road at the tail end of 2006. She even took a turn in the Los
Angeles production of Wicked in 2007. Its fair to say no actress
knows the heart and soul of Galinda better than Hilty. She took another turn
on Broadway in the Dolly Parton inspired 9 to 5: The Musical in
2009. These days she is best known for her work as Marilyn in the hit NBC
show Smash. She battles with American Idol darling
Katharine McPhee for the lead role in this inside look at the inner workings
of a Broadway production.

Adam Lambert – Speaking of American Idol, season eight
runner-up Adam Lambert cut his teeth in theatre before he became a
television sensation. He served as an understudy for Fiyero and an ensemble
cast member in the national touring production of Wicked in 2005
and took another stint in the Los Angeles production in 2007. For those who
watched him torch the competition on Idol, it is easy to see how
that early drama work paid huge dividends once he hit the national stage. In
the days since American Idol, Lambert has released a duo of
successful albums as well sang as a stand-in for Queen frontman Freddie
Mercury on the band’s 2012 European festival dates.

Patty Duke – Duke was a fixture in America’s heart long before Wicked
was ever conceived. She starred in The Patty Duke Show during the
60s as well as highly acclaimed roles in The Miracle Worker and
Valley of the Dolls. She would win a Best Supporting Actress Oscar
for her portrayal of Helen Keller. She took a stab at Madame Morrible when
Wicked returned to San Francisco in 2009. She stayed on in the role
for a year.

By Troy Christian, editor of Broadway Tour. For complete tour cities, cast
information and the latest show updates, visit the Wicked Tour page at
BroadwayTour.net. Follow Broadway Tour on Facebook and Twitter @BroadwayTours.


Teal Wicks Favourite “Elphaba”

The results from the “Poll of the Month” just came in.

With an amazing record of 65.000 votes the poll is close And the winner is: TEAL WICKS. With over 57% of the votes Outstanding San Francisco’s Elphaba, gets the award of “Favourite Elphaba”.

Second place was for Jemma Rix – current Elphaba in Australian Production of Wicked Broadway with 40% of the votes. Surprisingly third place went to Amanda Harrison also from the Aussie Wicked with 2 per cent.

Then this is the ranking in placing order:

– Idina Menzel

– Jennifer DiNoia

– Stephanie J. Block

– Julian Murney

– Kerry Ellis

– Dee Roscioli

– Eden Espinosa

– Julie Reiber

– Marcie Dodd

– Nicole Parker

– Shohsana Bean

– Carmen Cusack

– Willemijn Verkaik

– Alexia Khadime

– Lisa Brescia

– Vickie Noon

– Caisie Levy

– Coleen Sexton

– Pippa Grandison

– Victoria Matlock

– Carrie Manolakos

– Ashleigh Gray

Thank you all for participating! You have been all wonderful.

Congratulations to all of the contestants and specially to the amazingly talented and gorgeous Teal Wicks!

Idina Menzel is (YET not) confirmed for GLEE

Idina Menzel might be appearing as a new character on the TV success show GLEE when airing returns in Spring of 2010 but is YET not officially confirmed. However, many sources had agree that Ms. Menzel will be part of the second half of the season.

Idina may appear in all of the nine remaining episodes to complete first season as the coach of rival Glee Club .

WICKED Named ‘Best Stage Musical’ of the Decade

Entertainment Weekly Magazine issues  “The 100 Greatest Movies, TV Shows, Songs Moments & More – Best of the Decade 2000-2009” issue and WICKED has been picked as the ‘Best Stage Musical’.

Broadway’s only musical representation on the magazine’s list is WICKED, about which they write “With Kristin Chenoweth’s soaring vocals, Idina Menzel’s show-stopping ‘Defying Gravity’ and an army of winged monkeys, is it any wonder 2003’s Oz-themed musical left audiences feeling carried away?’

via BroadwayWorld

Review: Wicked on Broadway

For those of you who doesn’t know the show, “Wicked” tells the untold story of the Witches of Oz. Something like if you turn the camera either side, on the movie the Wizard of OZ, Wicked will reveal the many mysteries and secrets you ever wondered about that magical land.

Last Friday July 10th I went to the fabulous Gershwin Theatre to enjoy one of the most smashing-hit shows in Broadway, Wicked.

I have to admit I hadn’t the greatest seats of all, in fact I was sitting right on the aisle. However, seats where much  better than expected having a complete excellent view of the stage and performers – Orchestra section, row K, seats 2 & 4 – missing nothing of the amazing journey to the land of Oz.

As I previously stated on other reviews, I’m of course, not a critic and perhaps many details are therefore overlooked or even not mentioned in this “wanna-be” review.  Still, I would love to try and give my take on the show.

What can I say that it hasn’t been said before. Production is just amazing. Perhaps, one of the most outstanding Broadway shows I’ve ever seen and we’ll even see. I was fortunate enough to have already seen a Wicked  production but in that occasion was last January in Australia so I will compare some of the things in the show.

So, to start with, I’ll give a look over performances. I was lucky enough -that night- to see the entire official cast. Therefore G(l)inda was played by Alli Mauzey and Elphaba  by Nicole Parker.  Both were simple brilliant. Ms. Mauzey was really on fire that evening. Her comic-timing was very accurate and leaves no room to doubt that she was/is perfect for the character. Glinda, together with Elphaba, is perhaps one of the toughest roles in Broadway to take over, but Alli has succeeded in bringing this character to joyful life in a graceful and spectacular way.  She has an amazing quality and tone voice, although I think she is a little bit more of an actress than a singer. Perfect jokes made the audience, including me, crack into laughter minute after minute, but she accomplished as well, like few, to deliver the most sad and powerful feelings Glinda was undergoing along the story. In a not a fair comparison, I had a hard time choosing between Alli Mauzey and Lucy Durack -playing Glinda in Australia’s production of Wicked-, Lucy was my first Glinda ever and therefore will hold a special place. However, Mauzey really stunned me at all moments. I would like to highlight this, “SHE REALLY STUNNED ME”, as I have to admit I was struggling within me for who I would love to see as Glinda that day, as I also like very much Laura Woyasz. Alli, however, made me forget of any and all desires I had, prior entering the show, and clearly stated why she is the official Glinda in Broadway. Wraping up, I LOVED HER. Besides, she was the most amazing and sweet person, when I met her at the stage door (equal to Nicole).

Now, Ms. Elpahaba by Nicole Parker. Nicole was simply remarkable. Her performance was original, stunning and breath-taking. I have to say that hearing day after day to Idina Menzel’s version, I was a little bit skeptical on what to expect, especially on the riffles. Back in January, I saw Patrice Tipoki playing that role in Australia (former understudy for Elphaba in Wicked Melbourne) and though I thought she was out-normally good, Nicole was able to so beautifully deliver every single thing line, verse and chord on her role, that she made me forget of any previous experience. I was simply fascinated with her. Ms. Parker’s vocal range, versatility, tone and timbre were impeccable and it’s easily to perceive she is a natural for singing. I simply adored her on that performance and I’m sure I want to see more of her in the future (I have to admit I still have a special place in my heart for San Francisco’s Elphaba, Teal Wicks). Last but not least, Parker and Mauzey worked amazingly well as the wicked spell-binding couple of OZ and you could easily tell that on the stage – something I can’t say of other productions.

Moving on to Fiyero by Keving Kern. He certainly achieved a good performance that night. His voice is just what Fiyero needs to keep moving up as one of the most emblematic male leading roles in Broadway.  Highlight of the night for Mr. Kern was “Dancing Through Life”. He was on every note and line required to portray Fiyero as few in Wicked’s run up to date.

Other roles were really accurate and very well executed on each scene. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and Ms. Morrible were the highlights of the evening behind Alli and Nicole.

Finally, regarding the ensemble, the whole crew was memorable. Simply great. Honestly, nothing to say about them, except I would love to have that complete ensemble in any production of mine (if I ever do).

Funny Fact: As being a total nuts about Wicked I could perceived many things the regular viewers couldn’t.  There were many differences between productions of Broadway and Melbourne. However, the most remarkable for me, were the many many thing on the choreography that were different. I would need tons of paragraphs to detail each one of them, but I thought it would be nice to mention the fact that there were.

In overall, this so-talented witches in this behind-the-scenes story of ”The Wizard of Oz” had already mastered the levitation spell, defying gravity as few people does. ”Wicked” has been playing long enough, but not long enough for audiences to have forgotten them and still giving standing ovations at the curtain call.