"We documented the making of a Broadway workshop," EGG executive producer Jeff Folmsbee explained to Playbill On-Line about what he calls an "immersion documentary." The half-hour national television series which showcases the diversity of art across America will focus on a workshop or, as Folmsbee put it, "a backer's audition where you present it to people with money hoping they will finance a real production."
Folmsbee continued "It's an exciting step because you see the work in its roughest stages." The documentary crew follows the two-and-a-half-week process from auditions to the workshopping in a black box to the presentation before an audience of producers and industry folk.
"You get more access to truly the way it works than I've ever seen before on television," added the executive producer who has been documenting theatre for PBS' Tony Awards telecast and "EGG the arts show" for over eight years. He continued, "giving a truthful non-sensational, non-sentimentalized depiction of what it takes to be a musical theatre artist."
Among the artists involved in "Broadway Workshop" are Amy Spanger (Kiss Me, Kate), Alan Thicke (Chicago, TV's "Growing Pains"), Spencer Kayden (Urinetown), director Gabriel Barre (Summer of '42, The Wild Party), composer Doug Katsaros (Moby Dick, The Life), choreographer Wayne Cilento (Aida, Dream), assistant Corinne McFadden (Aida) and dancers Shannon Lewis (Contact, Fosse), Kenya Unique Massey (Aida), Jim Borstelmann (The Producers), Mike Arnold and Luis Salgado.
The EGG crew shot the documentary using three cameras which were "never turned off" said Folmsbee, capturing even "fooling around" and difficult moments in the evolution of the work. "It's very cinema veritae, but it's also very 'Hard Day's Night' because of their energy. These are show people and they're just full of charm." "EGG the arts show" is brought to you by executive producer Jeff Folmsbee and series producer Mark Mannucci. Kathy Egan produces the "Broadway Workshop" episode based on footage produced and directed by Mannucci.
For more information and airtimes of PBS' "EGG the arts show," visit www.pbs.org/wnet/egg.