54 Below's Hit List Concerts, Based on Fictional "Smash" Musical, Sell Out in One Hour
By Michael Gioia
The 54 Below concerts of Hit List — the fictional musical from the NBC television drama "Smash" that was written by the characters of Jimmy Collins and Kyle Bishop, played on the series by Tony nominee Jeremy Jordan and Andy Mientus, respectively — have both sold out within one hour.
Jennifer Ashley Tepper, the new director of programming at 54 Below and producer of the Hit List concerts, confirmed to Playbill.com that the 9:30 PM and 11:30 PM shows on Dec. 9 both sold out within one hour of tickets being on sale. Aaron Tveit's solo engagement at 54 Below still holds the record for fastest selling time at five minutes.
Jordan (Newsies, Bonnie & Clyde) and Mientus (Carrie) are among the performers who will star in the 54 Below concerts. They will be joined by "Smash" co-star and First Date actress Krysta Rodriguez.
The Hit List concerts will be presented by Julia Brownell, Joshua Safran (executive producer and showrunner of the second season of "Smash") and Tepper.
"I will say, there is a TV show that I enjoyed a lot that may be celebrated in some way at 54 Below in the near future," Tepper, the new director of programming at 54 Below, told Playbill.com in an earlier interview. Read the full Brief Encounter here.
Benjamin Rauhala (Pippin) will be the musical director of Hit List, which will feature a full band.
The score of Hit List comprised songs by various composers — both in the musical theatre industry and pop worlds — including Drew Gasparini (Make Me Bad), Joe Iconis (The Black Suits), Andrew McMahon, Tony Award nominees Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (A Christmas Story, Dogfight), Tony Award winners Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman (Hairspray) and Lucie Silvas.
The concerts will include additional songs from the composers that were intended for Hit List but never made it to air as well as special appearances by several of the composers and additional performers.
The musical, according to 54 Below, is "a modern fable about identity and the price of fame [that] tells the tragic love story of a wannabe pop singer who transforms herself to become a star and the hidden songwriter she uses to get there – but at what cost?"
On "Smash," the fictional musical opened at Manhattan Theatre Workshop and transferred to Broadway's Barrymore Theatre, winning seven Tony Awards. Read the Playbill.com "Smash" Reports, recapping each episode.
54 Below is located at 254 W. 54th Street. For more information, visit 54Below.com.
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