The Nude and Naughty History of Broadway Bares A two-time Tony winner for best choreography (in 2005 he won for La Cage aux Folles and in 2013 he won for Kinky Boots), choreographer and director Jerry Mitchell started his career as a Broadway dancer and ensemble performer. In the midst of the AIDS crisis, Mitchell wanted to find a way to help. After some goading from friends at The Will Rogers Follies, he hopped up onto a bar is his barely-there Indian of the Dawn costume and Broadway Bares was born. Mitchell sat down with Playbill to celebrate 30 Days of Pride and to give a look back at the nude and naughty history of the now iconic Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS fundraiser. See "Glee" stars chat about the importance of living a genuine and authentic life.
Jane Lynch made her cabaret debut last week at speakeasy-styled nightspot 54 Below. Before sound check, Lynch and her special guest star Cheyenne Jackson chatted with Playbill to celebrate 30 Days of Pride. The two talked about what gay pride means and why it's important to them to be out in an industry that is under the watchful eye of the media. Other popular 54 Below performers (including Tamara Tunie, Kate Baldwin and Katie Finneran) chimed in with thoughts on freedom, inclusion and individualism. See Cabaret cast members talk about the fluid sexualities of their characters.
Gay? Straight? Bi? The Sexual Politics of Cabaret
Cabaret's Bill Heck (he plays Clifford Bradshaw) and Aaron Krohn (he plays Ernst Ludwig) sat down with Playbill to celebrate 30 Days of Pride. The two talked about the complex sexual politics of the production and how director Sam Mendes, along with the societal changes that have come about since the last revival of the show, encouraged them to take chances in exploring sexual identity — and hypocrisy — in their characters. Watch as Mothers and Sons visits the historically significant Stonewall Inn.
"Slightly Pornographic" Unknown Cole Porter Revue Gets American Premiere Over 85 Years Later
Cole Porter's collection of tunes known as The Ambassador Revue fell into oblivion after performances at Café des Ambassadeur in Paris in 1928. Some 85 years later, the virtually unknown revue gets an American premiere in a June 27 concert at The Town Hall in New York City. Tom Wopat, Anita Gillette, Jason Graae, Amy Burton, Catherine Russell and Ted Louis Levy will take the stage under the direction of Ken Bloom. Vince Giordano supplies arrangements and will perform alongside the Nighthawks Orchestra. Here, Wopat, Graae, Burton and Gillette give a sneak peek at tunes from the show. Read the Playbill story.
Iconic Gay Bar an Inviting Destination for Mothers and Sons
Bobby Steggert (he plays Will Ogden) and Tom Kirdahy (producer) represented Terrence McNally's Mothers and Sons as they celebrated 30 Days of Pride with Playbill. Steggert and Kirdahy took a trip to Greenwich Village to visit the Stonewall Inn, the scene of a June 28, 1969 riot that is regarded as the seminal event in starting the gay rights movement. The pair chatted about the history of the landmark and its importance to gay culture then and now. Watch Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty look back at their song "Make Them Hear You" being used as an anthem for gay pride.
Ahrens and Flaherty: "Raise Your Voice and 'Make Them Hear You'"
Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty sat down with Playbill at 54 Below to chat 30 Days of Pride. Even with a history of crafting songs about the power of the individual and self-fulfillment, the Tony-winning songwriting team was shocked to hear one of their tunes in a news report on CNN — the Gay Men's Chorus of Washington chose to sing Ragtime's "Make Them Hear You" on the steps of the Supreme Court to celebrate the overturning of DOMA and Prop 8 on June 26, 2013. Watch Barrett Foa talk about the themes of pride and self-fulfillment in Buyer & Cellar.
Barrett, Barbra and the Zen of the Diva in Buyer & Cellar
Barrett Foa ("NCIS: Los Angeles," "Submissions Only," "Entourage") recently stepped into Buyer & Cellar, the one person/six character show that recounts the (fictional) tale of working in the underground mall (NOT fictional) in diva Barbra Streisand's home. Here, Foa met up with Playbill to chat about the themes of the show and their relevance to Pride Month for Playbill's 30 Days of Pride. Watch as Linzi Hateley celebrates Pride Month by dedicating "Hold On" to anyone weathering the storms of life.
Linzi Hateley Gives The Secret Garden's "Hold On" the 30 Days of Pride Treatment
Star of the original Broadway production of Carrie, Linzi Hateley met up with Playbill at speakeasy-styled cabaret spot 54 Below to talk gay pride. Hateley looked back at her career and the societal changes that have come during her years on the stage. She then performed "Hold On" from The Secret Garden in honor of all those battling stormy weather in their lives. Watch Leslie Uggams celebrate gay pride and the month of June.
Lena Hall met the press after winning the 2014 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical for her turn as the gender-bending Yitzhak in Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Hall chatted about how she researched the role and took influences from the men around her, an iconic film actor and a friendship-themed cartoon featuring colorful ponies. See Hall's co-star Neil Patrick Harris talk wardrobe malfunctions.
2014 Tony nominees Sutton Foster, Idina Menzel, Lena Hall, James Monroe Iglehart, Andy Karl, Celia Keenan-Bolger, Cherry Jones, Jefferson Mays and more sat down with Playbill to chat about what gay pride means to them and why the Broadway community is so receptive to those often marginalized in other areas of society. Watch Leslie Uggams belt out an unorthodox gay pride anthem.
Why Leslie Uggams? "Because It's June!"
Leslie Uggams met up with Playbill to celebrate 30 Days of Pride by giving a shout out to all of the LGBT folks that she has worked with in the course of her amazing career on stage and on screen. She also looked back at an episode of Seth's Broadway Chatterbox where she gave the skinny on the bizarre "June is Bustin' Out All Over" performance that brought her an extra dose of fame in gay bars worldwide. To see the entire Chatterbox episode, visit SethTV.com. Uggams brings her cabaret show to 54 Below June 6 and 7.
The Skivvies Strip Down for Playbill's 30 Days of Pride
Lauren Molina and Nick Cearley (the upcoming Pageant: The Musical Comedy Beauty Contest) comprise the always-underdressed musical duo known as The Skivvies. They were on hand at nightspot 54 Below to help kick off Playbill's 30 Days of Pride tribute to Gay Pride Month and the LGBT voices of Broadway. Here, Molina and Cearley reconfigure an "ironic" pop tune to celebrate Cearley's recent marriage. Read the Playbill Story about 30 Days of Pride.
Rock Hard With Latest Broadway Bares
The Hammerstein Ballroom will welcome the 24th annual edition of Broadway Bares with its latest installment Broadway Bares: Rock Hard! The fundraiser for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS will pay tribute to the iconic music and moments of rock 'n' roll over the last 60 years. More than 150 of New York's sexiest and most talented dancers will take the stage for this burlesque spectacular. Here, some of the performers prep for the June 22 shows (9:30 PM and midnight) with a provocative photo shoot.