Monday, April 2, 2012

Godspell Prepares Way for New Jesus: High School Musical's Corbin Bleu

Prepare ye! On Tuesday, April 17 the company of Broadway's first-ever revival of Stephen Schwartz's legendary rock musical GODSPELL welcomes a new leading man -- stage and screen star Corbin Bleu (Disney's "High School Musical," Broadway's In the Heights) -- to the starring role of Jesus.

Bleu follows original star Hunter Parrish, who is set to play his final performance as Jesus on Sunday, April 15  before returning to Los Angeles to begin filming the eighth season of the Showtime series "Weeds."

"I know Corbin Bleu has a special affinity for GODSPELL, and with his great talent, charisma, and radiant energy, I know he will be terrific in the show," said Stephen Schwartz. "I am very much looking forward to working with him and seeing him as our new Jesus." 

Bleu made his Broadway stage debut in 2010 as the lead character, bodega-owner Usnavi, in the critically acclaimed musical In the Heights.
  
He starred in the Emmy-award winning Disney Channel Original Movie "High School Musical" and its sequel, "High School Musical 2" alongside Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, and Ashley Tisdale. "High School Musical 2" premiered to 18 million viewers, making it the highest rated Disney Channel Original Movie in history and the overall highest rated program in cable history.

Following to the worldwide success of "High School Musical," Bleu reprised his role in "High School Musical 3: Senior Year." The film broke opening weekend records and grossed over $250 million worldwide.

In March 2009, he released his second studio album, Speed of Light (Hollywood Records), a collaboration with some of the top producers and writers in the industry including Eric Hudson (Kanye West, Jennifer Hudson), Claude Kelly (Akon, Michael Jackson) and Brian Kennedy (Rihanna). He co-wrote the songs "Moments that Matter" and "Champion" with Claude Kelly (both tracks produced by Eric Hudson).

His debut solo album Another Side was released in May 2007. The album featured the hit single "Push it to the Limit" from the film Jump In! His single "Run It Back Again," from the Disney Channel Original Movie "Minutemen," became one of the top 10 downloaded songs on iTunes. Bleu performed material from "Another Side during" his North America tours in 2007 and 2008. He was subsequently nominated for a 2008 NAACP Image Award for Best New Artist.

His other film credits include Catch That Kid opposite Kristen Stewart, Soldier opposite Kurt Russell, Galaxy Quest opposite Tim Allen and Sigourney Weaver, Mystery Men opposite Ben Stiller and Hank Azaria, Duane Clark's Family Tree and William Dear's Free Style, which Bleu also produced.
 
He is the national spokesperson for the Starlight Children's Foundation and is also involved with St. Jude's Children's Hospital and the Make-a-Wish. 

Godspell plays at Broadway's Circle in the Square Theatre (1633 Broadway at 50th Street). For discounted tickets, click here. For more information, visit www.godspell.com.

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Daily Inspiration

The Blind Side

Read about the real life mom from "The Blind Side."

Lifeway: http://www.lifeway.com/article/?id=169816

Guideposts: http://www.guideposts.com/story/sandra-bullock-blind-side-football?page=0,1

Read Matt Mungle's review of the movie at http://www.buddyhollywood.com/.

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Lauren Yarger, Bio

Lauren Yarger has written, directed and produced numerous shows and special events for both secular and Christian audiences. She co-wrote a Christian musical version of “A Christmas Carol” which played to sold-out audiences of over 3,000 in Vermont and was awarded the 2000 Vermont Bessie (theater and film awards) for “People’s Choice for Theatre.” She also has written two other dinner theaters, sketches for church services and devotions for Christian artists.

Yarger trained for three years in the Broadway League’s Producer Development Program, completed the Commercial Theater Institute's Producing Three-Day Training and produced a one-woman musical about Mary Magdalene that toured nationally and closed with an off-Broadway run.

In 2008 she was a Fellow at the National Critics Institute at the O'Neill Theater Center in Waterford, CT. She writes reviews of Broadway and off-Broadway theater with a Christian perspective for Reflections in the Light (http://reflectionsinthelight.blogspot.com/) and is editor of The Connecticut Arts Connection. She also is a contributing editor for BroadwayWorld.com

She also reviews books for Publisher's Weekly and is a member of the National Book Critics Circle. She formerly was Connecticut theater editor for CurtainUp, a national theater web site bsed in New York and a reviewer for American Theater Web.

She also served as Executive Director of Masterwork Productions, Inc. and worked in arts management for the Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts in Hartford and the Hartford Symphony Orchestra.

She is a freelance writer and member of the Drama Desk, The Outer Critics Circle, The American Theater Critics Association, The League of Professional Theatre Women and The CT Critics Circle.

A former newspaper editor and graduate of the University of Missouri’s School of Journalism, Yarger lives with her husband in West Granby, CT and has two adult children.

Copyright Notice

All contents copyright © Lauren Yarger 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013. All rights reserved. For reprint permission, contact masterworkproductions@yahoo.com.

Scripture from THE MESSAGE Copyright 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.

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