Shoshana Bean to Replace Idina Menzel in Wicked Jan. 11

News   Shoshana Bean to Replace Idina Menzel in Wicked Jan. 11 Shoshana Bean, currently Idina Menzel’s standby in the hit musical Wicked, will replace Menzel when the Tony-winning actress leaves the musical Jan. 9, 2005. Bean’s first performance as Elphaba is scheduled for Jan. 11.
Shoshana Bean
Shoshana Bean

A spokesperson for the Stephen Schwartz musical confirmed to Playbill On-Line that Bean will begin her run as Elphaba the same day that David Ayers begins playing Fiyero (replacing Joey McIntyre) and Jeffrey Kuhn begins playing Boq (replacing Christopher Fitzgerald, who departs Jan. 2; understudy Walter Winston Oneil will play the interim week).

Shoshana Bean played Shelley in the original cast of the Tony-winning musical Hairspray. Originally from Portland, Oregon, Bean attended the University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music before heading to NYC. She was first cast in the Off-Broadway production of Godspell and then in the national tour of Leader of the Pack. Bean was also recently seen in the all-star Hair benefit concert. The singer-actress is currently working on her debut solo album for Pure Records.

Based on the novel by Gregory Maguire, which turned every Oz myth inside out, Wicked explores the early life of the witches of Oz: Glinda and Elphaba. The two main characters meet at Shiz, a school where both hope to take up sorcery. Glinda is madly popular and Elphaba is, well, green. By a misunderstanding, they wind up roommates and, after an initial period of mutual loathing, begin to learn something about each other. Their life paths continue to intersect through a shared love, entry into the Emerald City and interaction with the Wizard himself. Eventually, their choices and convictions take them on widely different paths.

With a score by Stephen Schwartz and a book by Winnie Holzman, Wicked began previews on Broadway Oct. 8, 2003, with an official opening Oct. 30, 2003. The company currently includes Tony winner Menzel as Elphaba, Jennifer Laura Thompson as Glinda, George Hearn as The Wizard, Carole Shelley as Madame Morrible, Joey McIntyre as Fiyero, Michelle Federer as Nessarose, Christopher Fitzgerald as Boq and William Youmans as Doctor Dillamand.

Directed by Joe Mantello, Wicked features choreography by Wayne Cilento and plays the Gershwin, 222 West 51st Street. Tickets are available by calling (212) 307-4100 or by visiting www.ticketmaster.com.