Bean finished the Jan. 9 Wicked matinee for Tony winner Menzel and also played the Jan. 9 evening and Jan. 10 matinee performances of the hit Stephen Schwartz musical. (Menzel, however, did play the musical's final scene and also returned for the curtain call.)
January 11 also marks the arrival of David Ayers as Fiyero, who replaces former pop star Joey McIntyre; and Jeffrey Kuhn, the recent Fiddler on the Roof star, who will now play munchkin Boq.
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.
David Ayers, who recently played Fyedka in the current revival of Fiddler on the Roof, also appeared on Broadway in Mamma Mia! His other theatrical credits include Hot Mikado, A New Brain, The Sound of Music, Honk! and Hair. Ayers has been seen on screen in “Law & Order: Criminal Intent” and “Guiding Light.”
Jeffrey Kuhn's Broadway credits include Assassins and Ragtime. A veteran of Canada's Stratford Festival, the actor has appeared in the Festival's productions of Love's Labour's Lost, Antony and Cleopatra, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Romeo and Juliet, The Illusion, The Tempest, Twelfth Night and Treasure Island. Kuhn's other theatrical credits include Floyd Collins, Dirty Blonde, The Lion King, The Who's Tommy and Nothing Sacred. 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 Jennifer Laura Thompson as Glinda, George Hearn as The Wizard, Carole Shelley as Madame Morrible, Michelle Federer as Nessarose 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.