A Groundhog Day in NYC on the Great White Way

A few weeks ago I saw a review of two new shows in NYC that suggested that "shows about street people and the homeless seem to be a popular theme in the current Broadway fare"...this statement immediately caught my attention. You see, I was already in the planning stages of bringing back a musical that I had on the shelf for 10 years that dealt with the homeless problem--"Ghosts On Broadway." It had received a showcase back in May 1995 at the John Houseman Theatre in NYC--and since I could never finish the script or "book" of the show--and was unsure of what direction I should take the plot--it lay dormant. But recent research and articles I read suggested that the homeless problem is FAR WORSE than it has ever been--so rather than straying far from my original premise--I decided to bring it back pretty much as it is and add more length and plot to the show. And so to help me get an idea of what these two shows were about, Wednesday Feb.2nd I decided to see BOTH OF THEM. I caught a matinee of Kathie Lee Gifford's "UNDER THE BRIDGE" at the Zipper Theatre on W.37th St.(featuring my old NYC buddy Dan Cooney)and "BROOKLYN:the musical" at the Plymouth Theatre on W.45th. "Bridge" is a delightful show based on a children's novel--Gifford wrote lyrics & the book; it tells the story of a stubborn hobo in 1953 Paris who is content to stay 'under the bridge' and reluctantly shares it with a homeless mother and her 3 kids. It only plays until Feb.20th in a limited engagement; but in a Q & A after the performance she let the audience who stayed to see her that there is a future for the show beyond the Zipper Theatre. I got to meet and privately chat with Kathie Lee which was a real treat--I opened for her former co-host Regis Philbin back in 1992 at Easton's State Theatre. I shared with her how I was bringing my show back and the similarities between both of our shows(and that I opened for 'Reege')...to find out more about her show go to http://kathieleegifford.com/underthebridge/index.php ...a few weeks before seeing "Brooklyn: the musical" I had been introduced to it's director Jeff Calhoun at Sam's Restaurant in NYC. At the time I was unaware of how similar my "Ghosts" and his show were--what a dynamic, soulful rocker this thing is--only 5 stage performers(all "street performers") with a heart-wrenching story of a girl singer extraordinare named "Brooklyn" and her journey to find her father that brings her back to NYC and a vocal showdown with the reigning diva in a contest not unlike "American Idol"...I chatted with the "Brooklyn" actress Eden Espinosa after the show--she worked with Walter ONeil--my friend who directed "Ghosts"--in the musical "Wicked"(Walter is still in the show). Go to http://www.brooklynthemusical.com to order tix or check out the show...after seeing both shows I was filled with great ideas and inspiration on what to do with "Ghosts"--TO OBTAIN A DVD COPY OF "GHOSTS ON BROADWAY" go to my "Original CDs" link here at my website for ordering info..more on all of this later!

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