Lessons of the Week: Idina Menzel, Ariana Grande & More!

first_img Star Files View Comments Idina Menzelcenter_img We sense a presence…a presence we haven’t felt since…last year? Happy Friday, everyone! Before you head off to your big weekend plans (if you’re like us, those inlcude watching this video on loop), make sure you’re caught up on everything that happened on the Great White Way these past seven days. We learned plenty, from a long lost Star Wars musical to the story behind a certain Tony winner’s biceps. Take it all in with 2016’s first Lessons of the Week!Luke Skywalker Almost Had Jazz Hand(s)A long time ago—before Lin was writing songs for The Force Awakens, Charles Strouse and Lee Adams were George Lucas’ only hope at bringing Star Wars to Broadway. The duo behind Bye Bye Birdie recorded a handful of demos (orchestrated by Jason Robert Brown!) before the project was scrapped. Wait, guys, bring this back! We know just the pair to breathe life into “Han’s Your Man” and “My Star.”Ariana Grande’s Not Afraid of AnythingShe may have bang banged into the room (and into our hearts), but never forget that Ariana Grande is a Broadway baby through and through. The singer made her Broadway debut in Jason Robert Brown’s 13 in 2008, and earlier this week, she gave a surprise performance with the famed orchestrator of the Star Wars musical (he’s done some other things). Who needs donuts when you have show tunes…and a killer Carolee Carmello impression?Christian Borle’s Arms Are MethodRemember Peter Pan Live!, that magical time when a bunch of Newsies jumped around and Christian Borle DEBUTED THOSE HUGE ARMS? Did you know there was a very specific reason why you noticed them then? The Something Rotten! Tony winner revealed that the muscle was part of an elaborate backstory for Smee, whom he viewed as a sort of bodyguard-turned-meathead. We’re not entirely sure that came through, but we’re not complaining.Muhammad Ali Is EquitySomething has changed within us; something is not the same. That’s because we wrote about sports. No, Idina’s not singing at the Super Bowl again (but Beyoncé is!). Former NFL star Eddie George steps into Chicago next week, but he’s not the first athlete to hit Broadway. In fact, Muhammad Ali starred in the musical Buck White in the ‘60s. It only lasted seven performances, but thanks to Ed Sullivan and the Internet, you can still watch the boxing legend sing like a bee.Idina Menzel Is a “Proud” Ice QueenSpeaking of Idina (no, she’s still not singing at the Super Bowl), the Tony winner’s not the only ice queen in town. We’re of course talking about People Magazine’s 2012 Sexiest Man Alive: Channing Tatum. The Hollywood hunk channeled his inner Elsa on Lip Sync Battle this week, and it gave Idina chills. Yes, the storm that is Frozen still rages on, thanks to a few buckets of snow and a whole lot of white spandex. Why wouldn’t Idina be proud?Joaquina’s Gonna Let You Finish, But…It’s January, and the Lead Actress in a Musical Tony category is already nuts. There’s no shortage of talent, but if The Color Purple star Cynthia Erivo doesn’t win, expect a Kanye moment from Joaquina Kalukango. The actress revealed on #LiveAtFive that she is not above storming the Beacon Theatre stage if her co-star’s name isn’t called. We suspect it’s moot, but we also kind of want to hear Erivo sing “Shake It Off.”We’ll Drop Out For Boyz II MenWith some tight harmonies, three angels are about to send us back to high school, the ‘50s and ‘90s all at the same time. Boyz II Men will take a break from promising to make love to you and instead sing doo-wop to Carly Rae Jepsen. The R&B trio have been tapped to play Teen Angel(s) in Fox’s Grease: Live, joining our favorite one-handed clapper, Julianne Hough and more. Babies, don’t blow it!Zachary Quinto Will Be RebornZachary Quinto is a versatile actor, but this is another level. While talking up his off-Broadway show Smokefall, he explained that he starts as a narrator figure named Footnote, goes on to play a fetus, then finishes off as the son of the fetus he played in the previous act. Again: grammatical annotation, unborn collection of cells, adult male…. in the same show. Take that, Cherry Jones!Tony Yazbeck’s World Is Upside DownMaybe he just has a thing for ships—both Navy and pirate. Tony Yazbeck will take on the role of J.M. Barrie in Finding Neverland. Don’t cry for Matthew Morrison, though: the still-bearded Broadway.com Audience Choice Award winner will appear in both Younger and The Good Wife. Yazbeck starts performances on January 26, which is just enough time to grow some scruff of his own and perfect that accent.Alex Brightman Will Keep You Sugared UpAlex Brightman gave us a glimpse of his exclusive coffee shop in the first episode of Hard Rock Life, and if watching Alex, Sierra Boggess and company drink hot beverages and eating pastries gives you FOMO, you’re in luck. This week, the School of Rock star surprised early birds in the rush line with a box of donuts. Alex, we are literally across the street. And love donuts. Sugar Daddy, bring it home.last_img read more

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