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Memphis Rocks 500th Performance and Announced National Tour!
December 29, 2010
Source: Playbill.com

The Tony Award-winning rock musical Memphis celebrates its 500th performance on Broadway Dec. 29 at 2 PM at the Shubert Theatre. The musical's Tony Award-winning book writer and lyricist, Joe DiPietro, is offering fans a first-hand account of the performance. The rock musical about an interracial love affair in the 1950s segregated South stars Tony Award nominees Chad Kimball and Montego Glover. Memphis opened on Broadway Oct. 19, 2009, at the Shubert Theatre under the direction of Christopher Ashley. Broadway previews began Sept. 23, 2009.

Bon Jovi songwriter and band member David Bryan and DiPietro penned the score to the musical, which is flavored with gospel, R&B, rock and soul sounds. DiPietro will be tweeting during the 2 PM performance to give Broadway fans a peek at his point of view.
Memphis also features Derrick Baskin, J. Bernard Calloway, James Monroe Iglehart, Michael McGrath and Cass Morgan.

Memphis will launch a national tour in its namesake city at the Orpheum Theatre in October 2011. In April 2010, Tony Award-winning lyricist and book writer Joe DiPietro told Playbill.com that a movie adaptation is also in development.

Songs in the production are "Underground," "The Music of My Soul," "Ain't Nothin' But a Kiss," "Everybody Wants to Be Black on a Saturday Night," "Make Me Stronger," "Colored Women," "Someday," "She's My Sister," "Radio," "Say a Prayer," "Big Love," "Love Will Stand When All Else Falls," "Stand Up," "Change Don't Come Easy," "Memphis Lives in Me" and "Steal Your Rock 'n' Roll."

Memphis is produced on Broadway by Junkyard Dog Productions, Barbara and Buddy Freitag and Kenny and Marleen Alhadeff with Latitude Link, Jim and Susan Blair, Land Line Productions, Demos Bizar Entertainment, Apples and Oranges Productions, Dave Copley, Dancap Productions, Inc., Tony Ponturo, 2 Guys Productions, and Richard Winkler in association with Linda and Bill Potter, Broadway Across America, Jocko Productions, Lauren Doll/Bob Bartner, Patty Baker, Dan Frishwasser, Loraine Boyle/Chase Mishkin, Remmel T. Dickinson/Memphis Orpheum Group and ShadowCatcher Entertainment/Vijay and Sita Vashee.

Local students meet with Ryan Jackson of "Wicked"
December 1, 2010
Source: www.bixbybulletin.com

Students of South Tulsa Dance Co., Bixby, were provided the rare educational opportunity to study with a Broadway performer from Wicked, while the cast was in town thrilling audiences at Chapmann Music Hall.

Since dance students train hard with the dreams of one day performing on the Broadway stages, this took them one step closer to their dreams.

On Monday, November 22, through Broadway Connection, a company connecting students with Broadway performers, the students took part in an educational master class taught by a cast member of Wicked, Ryan Jackson. The excitement of the students could surely be felt throughout Tulsa as they trained in the comfort of their home studio.

During the Musical Theatre Jazz Master Class, students polished their dancing technique and received insider information. They learned how to stand out in front of directors, choreographers and professors and land the job or dream school. The master class included a Broadway Connection Question and Answer time during which students received detailed advice on current auditions, Broadway trends, university programs and dance companies.

South Tulsa Dance Co. owner, Keally Lilly, is thrilled about the opportunities which Broadway Connection offers her students. “South Tulsa Dance Co. offers a wide variety of dance classes and training, and we do not limit the training to the teachers within the studio. We feel it is so important to open the doors to all students and let them get a taste of master classes and teachers from all over the country,” she says.

Broadway Connection teacher, Ryan Jackson, said, “Working with local students is a fantastic way to connect with our audience and community. I teach students about all the different aspects of putting a Broadway show together with the hopes of motivating them to keep training hard and inspiring a lifetime love for theatre.”

The Buzz Archive
The Broadway Connection Experience
“Robbie was incredible! I can't tell you the amount of positive feedback I got form the kids and their parents. He inspired them to go for it and to realize that anything is possible with hard work and dedication!” - M. Navarrete

Joey was a great teacher and made sure every student was getting the choreography and not just the steps but the choreographer's intent behind each step. He shared not only his passion for the choreography but his love of teaching. 

- I. Cook
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