Winner of TV's "Fame" May Find Fame Off-Broadway

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22 Jul 2003

The winner of NBC-TV's "Fame" competition will have a chance to star in the Off-Broadway production of Fame on 42nd Street, which is set to begin previews at the Little Shubert Theatre this fall.

The finale of the television program — produced and choreographed by Debbie Allen and hosted by Joey Fatone — is scheduled to air live at 8 PM ET July 23. Four "triple-threat" performers will vie for top honors: Shannon Bex, Harlemm Lee, Serena Henry and Brandon O'Neal. Audiences across the Continental United States will select the winner by voting by phone. According to a spokesperson for the musical, "The winner [of the TV competition] will be considered for a role in the production or to be in the ensemble."

This latest version of "Fame" premiered May 28. Choreographer-singer actress Debbie Allen auditioned hundreds of wannabe "dancers who sing" and "singers who dance" all around the country. Only 24 finalists proceeded to Los Angeles, where they began a "boot camp" at Allen's own dance studio. Each week the various up-n-coming artists demonstrated their skills, and viewers determined who would proceed to the next round of competition.

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Previews will begin Oct. 7 for the Off-Broadway musical Fame, which is based on the hit film — and subsequent TV shows — of the same name. An official opening is scheduled for Nov 11. Conceived and developed by David De Silva, Fame is set in the 1980's and concerns the lives of up-n-coming performing artists attending New York's High School for the Performing Arts. The musical features a book by Jose Fernandez and a score by Jacques Levy (lyrics) and Steve Margoshes (music). The title song — originally performed by Irene Cara — was written by Dean Pitchford and Michael Gore.



Drew Scott Harris will direct the New York production with choreography by Lars Bethke. The creative team also includes Norbert Kolb (sets), Ken Billington (lights), Paul Tazwell (costumes) and Christopher "Kit" Bond (sound). Fame is being produced Off-Broadway by Richard Martini, Allen Spivak and Dodger Stage Holding by arrangement with The Father Fame Foundation.

Tickets for Fame on 42nd Street are currently on sale by calling (212) 239-6200. The performance schedule at the Little Shubert (422 West 42nd Street) will be Tuesdays at 7 PM, Wednesday-Saturday evenings at 8 PM with matinees on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 2 PM and Sundays at 3 PM. For more information, visit www.fameon42.com.