A host of Broadway favorites took over Central Park for Elsie Fest 2019, with Tony winners Cynthia Erivo (The Color Purple), Lena Hall (Hedwig and the Angry Inch), Anaïs Mitchell (Hadestown), Gavin Creel (Hello, Dolly!), and many others taking the stage October 5. The festival, a brainchild of headliner Darren Criss, Jujamcyn President Jordan Roth, and talent manager Ricky Rollins, brings showtunes to a music festival setting.
Also in attendance were upcoming West Side Story film star Ariana DeBose and The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical composer Rob Rokicki. Ensemble performances from Jagged Little Pill and High School Musical: The Musical: The Series rounded out the lineup.
Watch a medley from The Color Purple featuring Erivo and Criss above, with more highlighted performances below.
“Wait For It” from Hamilton - Darren Criss
“Waving Through a Window” from Dear Evan Hansen - Darren Criss
“Wig in a Box” from Hedwig and the Angry Inch - Darren Criss, Lena Hall, and John Cameron Mitchell
Ladies and gentlemen, whether you like it or not: the original Hedwig, John Cameron Mitchell, and Tony-winning Yitzhak, @LenaRockerHall, singing @HedwigOnBway’s “Wig in a Box” with @DarrenCriss at @ElsieFest! pic.twitter.com/Y2kEK5XMv6— Playbill (@playbill) October 6, 2019
“One Night Only” from Dreamgirls - Cynthia Erivo
“Ain’t No Way” - Cynthia Erivo
(Erivo will play Aretha Franklin, who released the song in 1968, in Nat Geo's upcoming new season of its Genius anthology.)
“Put on Your Sunday Clothes” from Hello, Dolly! / “What Do I Need With Love?” from Thoroughly Modern Millie / “Bad Idea” from Waitress - Gavin Creel
“Moving Too Fast” from The Last Five Years - Gavin Creel
“Let the Sunshine In” from Hair - Gavin Creel
Gavin gave a shout out to Diane Paulus (who is in the crowd!), the director of the 2009 revival of Hair, before launching into his performance of the musical’s anthem at @ElsieFest pic.twitter.com/iNUGx5u0Gv— Playbill (@playbill) October 6, 2019
“Invisible” by Jason Robert Brown - Ariana DeBose
“All That Jazz” from Chicago - Ariana DeBose
“Shall We Dance?” from The King & I - Ariana DeBose
(The arrangement stems from the Rodgers and Hammerstein Organization's new R&H Goes Pop series.)
“Forgiven” - Cast of Jagged Little Pill
“Why We Build the Wall” from Hadestown - Anaïs Mitchell
“Way Down Hadestown” from Hadestown - Anaïs Mitchell
“Good Kid” from The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical - Rob Rokicki