When Newsies opened March 29, 2012, at the Nederlander Theatre, audiences were delighted. The scrappy youngsters on stage, eager to make the world a better place, resonated with thousands and brought smiles to theatrelovers eight nights a week for 1,004 performances.
To help fans get to know their favorite characters even better, Disney on Broadway created video series Meet the Newsies, featuring 13 performers talking about their characters and spilling backstage secrets.
“I don’t remember a lot of it,” says Corey Cott, above, of his first performance as Jack Kelly (he took over the role in September 2012 from Jeremy Jordan, marking his Broadway debut). “It was a whirlwind. There’s a moment in ‘Santa Fe’ where Jack sings ‘dreams come true,’ and they do.”
In addition, Cott shared that he and Ben Fankhauser, who played Davey, grew up together. They did productions at Stagecrafters Youth Theatre in Orange, Ohio, with the pair even playing Roger and Mark, respectively, in Rent.
Check out the entire series on YouTube.
Look Back at Newsies on Broadway
Newsies features a book by Harvey Fierstein, music by Alan Menken, and lyrics by Jack Feldman. The musical, set in turn-of-the-20th-century America, follows newsboy Jack Kelly, who dreams of a better life far from the hardship of the streets. When Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst raise distribution prices, Jack finds a cause to fight for and rallies his army of newsies to strike.
The Disney on Broadway musical took home 2012 Tony Awards for Best Choreography (Christopher Gattelli) and Best Original Score (Menken and Feldman). The production was also nominated for Best Actor (Jeremy Jordan), Best Book (Fierstein), Best Direction (Jeff Calhoun), Best Orchestrations (Daniel Troob), Best Scenic Design (Tobin Ost and Sven Ortel) and Best Musical.