The 9:30 PM concert, featuring new arrangements, follows multiple, sold-out engagements at 54 Below.
Directed by Max Friedman, Big Band will feature guest vocalists Daniel Breaker (Passing Strange, Shrek: The Musical), Matt Doyle (Spring Awakening, The Book of Mormon), Laura Osnes (Cinderella, South Pacific), Margo Seibert (Rocky), Ben Fankhauser (Newsies) and Julia Mattison (Godspell) with a special appearance by Tony Award winner Jason Robert Brown (The Bridges of Madison County, Parade) showcasing a selection from his upcoming Broadway musical Honeymoon in Vegas.
Doyle makes his Big Band debut, and Jacob Porter produces.
Here's how the evening is billed: "Join Broadway bandleader Charlie Rosen (One Man, Two Guvnors) for an evening that puts both modern and classic show tunes on display, sung by the best and brightest of Broadway's young generation of leading performers, in the timeless tradition of Big Band. A full sized Jazz orchestra composed of 17 musicians play Rosen's re-imagined arrangements of an eclectic mix of tunes from Broadway's past, present, and beyond!"
Rosen previously composed the score for the Roundabout Theater Company's Cyrano de Bergerac and served as musical director and bassist for the onstage band in One Man, Two Guvnors on Broadway. His other Broadway credits include Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and 13. With Friedman, he co-created the original Sondheim jazz revue The Bluest Ink. His debut EP, "Monet Sabel & The Charlie Rosen Big Band," is now available on iTunes. A single version of Broadway Big Band favorite, Rosen's arrangement of Adele's "Rolling In The Deep" (featuring Hannah Elless, Monet Julia Sabel and Alysha Umphress), is available as a free download on SoundCloud.
54 Below is located at 254 W. 54th Street. Tickets are $25-$55 plus a $25 food/beverage minimum. Visit 54Below.com.
Matt Doyle: "Too Darn Hot" (Cole Porter/Ella Fitzgerald's version). The flow and build to this song are magnificent. It always puts a smile on my face. Easily one of my favorite melodies ever written.
Matt Doyle: "Night and Day" (Cole Porter). Possibly my favorite Cole Porter song. The intro to this is so thrilling and interesting. Easily some of the best lyrics he ever wrote.
Margo Seibert: "It's Only a Paper Moon" (Harold Arlen with lyrics by E. Y. Harburg and Billy Rose). I have many favorites! I grew up listening to Carmen McRae, Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan — so many lovely ladies. I love "Paper Moon," which I sing in my solo show, but luckily Charlie has given me another moon song for tonight, "Old Devil Moon." And, I've never heard such a fantastic arrangement!
Julia Mattison: "Rolling in the Deep" (Adele/Charlie Rosen's Broadway Big Band). I was going to submit my favorite walking-through-the-streets-of-NYC tune, "Sugarfoot Rag" as sung by Ella Fitzgerald… But I have to give a big-old favorite to Charlie's arrangement of "Rolling in the Deep." It's not only brilliantly orchestrated and played, but it pairs Adele with the Andrews Sisters, which, as far as I know, is the stuff dreams are made of.
Ben Fankhauser: "What More Do I Need?" (Stephen Sondheim). I love the classic "Sing, Sing, Sing"! That is the quintessential "Big Band sound" to me. I also love Charlie's arrangement of "What More Do I Need?" — great tune, great arrangement, and Monet Sabel delivers a smooth, light and heartfelt performance on the album.
Laura Osnes: "Sing, Sing, Sing" (Louis Prima). Being the musical theatre nut that I am, I grew up listening to "Sing, Sing, Sing" on the Fosse musical soundtrack and found myself making up dances to it in my living room. I know, it's such a mainstream big band standard, but it's a goodie! You can't help but at least tap your toe, if not start dancing yourself!
Charlie Rosen: "What More Do I Need?" (Saturday Night, Stephen Sondheim). Because, even though some times some of the practical details of New York City can grind on you, it still continues to surprise me in amazing ways through the people in it.
Charlie Rosen: The symphonic dances from West Side Story (Leonard Bernstein). This score for me was a huge milestone for my musical growth in its harmonic complexity, yet accessibility of melody and text.
Max Friedman: "Glad To Be Unhappy" (Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart). I have a real passion for the convergence between classic show tunes and contemporary artists, and creating that dynamic is a big part of mine and Charlie's mission with these Broadway Big Band shows. When John Mayer, one of my favorite singers, performed my favorite Rodgers and Hart ballad with Chris Botti and a large jazz ensemble, I was absolutely over the moon. We've been fortunate enough to have such amazing Broadway leading men (Jay Armstrong Johnson, Jason Gotay, Andy Mientus) perform Charlie's magnificent arrangement of this particular song with our Big Band, and John Mayer's magical rendition provided us with a great amount of inspiration when we were planning our first show.
Max Friedman: "Rolling in the Deep" Medley (Adele/Charlie Rosen's Broadway Big Band). Charlie and I also strive to prove that equal amounts of magic can occur when you pair a contemporary song with a classic, Broadway-inspired arrangement. Such is the case with this re-imagining of Adele's ubiquitous radio smash "Rolling In The Deep," performed by Hannah Elless, Monet Sabel, and Alysha Umphress as Broadway's millennial answer to The Andrews Sisters. We closed our first performance at 54 Below with this one, and it's a real showstopper! (It can also be downloaded as a free single on SoundCloud.) We have another AWESOME pop tune completely turned on its head in our next show that just might tear the roof off of 54 Below.
Jacob Porter: "Overture" from Gypsy (Jule Styne). I am a sucker for a six-minute traditional overture, and hearing Charlie's arrangement for the Gypsy overture at the last incarnation of Charlie Rosen's Broadway Big Band was absolutely chill-inducing and electric. It is what this evening is all about, and I could listen to his arrangements all day everyday. They're brilliant!