Disney Announces Performer Line-Up for Epcot International Festival of the Arts Broadway Series

Walt Disney World has announced the performer line-up for the 2018 Epcot International Festival of the Arts – Disney on Broadway Series.

The Disney on Broadway Series takes place on Fridays through Mondays at the America Gardens Theatre, with showtimes at 5:30, 6:45 and 8:00 PM, and is included with theme park admission. Dining packages with reserved seating are also available.

The performer line-up is:

  • January 12-15 and 19-22: New this year, Kara Lindsay will join returning performer Kevin Massey, performing songs from Tarzan, Aladdin, Newsies, and Frozen.
  • January 26-29 and February 2-5: Kissy Simmons and Alton Fitzgerald White, performing songs from Tarzan, The Lion King, Aida, Aladdin, and The Little Mermaid.
  • February 9-12 and 16-19: Ashley Brown and Josh Strickland, performing songs from Beauty and the Beast, Tarzan, Mary Poppins, Newsies, and Frozen.
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Broadway’s ‘Frozen’ Sets Initial Principal Casting

Initial principal casting has been announced for Broadway’s Frozen, the new musical based on Disney’s Academy Award-winning musical film. As previously reported, the show will play the Denver Center for the Performing Arts’ Buell Theatre August 17–October 1 before arriving on Broadway in spring 2018 at the St. James Theatre.

The cast will be led by Caissie Levy and Patti Murin as Arendelle’s royal sisters.

Levy, who last appeared on Broadway as Fantine in the revival of Les Miserables, will create the role of Elsa, a young woman wrestling with powers beyond her comprehension or control (voiced on screen by Idina Menzel). Levy’s additional credits include Ghost and Hair, both in the West End and on Broadway, as well as Broadway’s Wicked and Hairspray.

Murin, who made her Broadway debut in Xanadu and has since appeared on the New York stage in Lysistrata Jones, Lady, Be Good!, and Love Labour’s Lost, will star as Elsa’s younger sister Anna, who tries to reconnect with the person once closest to her.

The two will be joined by Greg Hildreth (Peter and the Starcatcher, Cinderella, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson) as Olaf, Robert Creighton (The Little Mermaid, Anything Goes, Off-Broadway’s Cagney) as Duke of Weselton, John Riddle (The Visit) as Hans, and Jelani Alladin in his Broadway debut as Kristoff. Additional principal and ensemble casting will be announced soon.

Tony winner Michael Grandage (Red) directs the production.

Producers also announced April 17 that Tony Award winner Rob Ashford has joined Frozen’s creative team as choreographer. Christopher Gattelli, previously announced as choreographer, has chosen to leave the show ahead of rehearsals in June. Ashford is a Tony winner for Thoroughly Modern Millie.

Single tickets for the Denver engagement, which start at $25 with a limit of eight tickets per account, will go on sale May 1 at 10 AM MT at DenverCenter.org. Tickets for the Broadway production will go on sale later this year.

In spring 2018, Frozen will join Disney Theatrical’s other Broadway mainstays The Lion King and Aladdin. Broadway dates will be announced at a later date. Levy and Murin were previously announced to play Elsa and Anna in a developmental lab.

The new musical features music and lyrics by the creators of the film’s score, Kristen Anderson-Lopez (In Transit, Up Here) and EGOT winner Robert Lopez (Avenue Q, The Book of Mormon, Up Here), and a book by Jennifer Lee (Wreck-It Ralph), the film’s screenwriter and director (with Chris Buck).

The design team for Frozen includes Tony- and Olivier-winner scenic and costume designer Christopher Oram (Wolf Hall Parts 1 & 2, The Cripple of Inishmaan, Evita), Tony-winning lighting designer Natasha Katz (Aladdin; Hello, Dolly!; An American in Paris), and sound designer Peter Hylenski (The Scottsboro Boys, Motown, After Midnight).

Two-time Tony Award winner Stephen Oremus (Avenue Q, Wicked, The Book of Mormon) is music supervisor and creates vocal and incidental arrangements.

Frozen won two Oscars in 2014: Best Song (“Let It Go”) and Best Animated Feature.

Frozen is produced by Disney Theatrical Productions.

Broadway’s Best Light up D23 EXPO with Exclusive Concerts

d23-expo-2015

Following the incredibly warm and rousing reception from D23 EXPO fans in 2013, Disney Theatrical Productions is thrilled to announce a new concert presented exclusively for this year’s D23 EXPO at the Anaheim Convention Center entitled Disney on Broadway’s “THE ORIGINALS.” In anticipation of high fan-demand, two performances of the concert will be presented on Saturday, August 15th at 11am and at 2pm in Stage 23.

Disney on Broadway’s “THE ORIGINALS” stars Broadway’s original “Mary Poppins” (Ashley Brown), “Tarzan” (Josh Strickland) and “Genie” (James Monroe Iglehart) from Aladdin. The “originals” will entertain and delight D23 EXPO attendees by performing favorite musical highlights from the Disney on Broadway catalogue. Tony Award®-winner James Monroe Iglehart will also serve as host for this 70-minute, live performance that features a five-piece band of Broadway’s best musicians with special behind-the-scenes videos and interviews that promise to enthrall Disney on Broadway fans of all ages.

Ashley Brown originated the title role in Mary Poppins on Broadway for which she received Outer Critics, Drama League and Drama Desk nominations for Best Actress. Ms. Brown also starred as Mary Poppins in the national tour of Mary Poppins where she garnered a Garland award for “Best Performance in a Musical”. Ms. Brown’s other Broadway credits include Belle in Beauty and the Beast, and she has starred in the national tour of Disney’s On The Record. Ms. Brown recently returned to critical acclaim starring in the Lyric Opera of Chicago’s production of Oklahoma. She previously played Magnolia opposite Nathan Gunn in Francesca Zembello’s Show Boat at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Ms. Brown has performed with virtually all of the top orchestras in North America including the Boston Pops, the New York Philharmonic, The Hollywood Bowl Orchestra at Disney Hall, the New York Pops at Carnegie Hall (four times), the Cincinnati Pops and the Philadelphia Orchestra (two times). Ashley starred in The Sound of Music at the St. Louis MUNY which garnered her a Kevin Kline award and her own PBS special called “Ashley Brown: Call Me Irresponsible” which received a PBS Telly Award. Other television credits include NBC’s The Sound of Music. Ms. Brown’s long-awaited album of Broadway and American Songbook standards is available on Ghostlight/Sony. Ashley is a graduate of the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music.

Josh Strickland is a native of Charleston, South Carolina. In 2006, Strickland created the leading role of Tarzan in Disney’s Tarzan on Broadway. In 2009, he made his starring Las Vegas debut in PEEPSHOW at Planet Hollywood Casino & Resort while concurrently co-starring in the hit E! reality show Holly’s World. Strickland debuted his first single “Report to the Floor”, which skyrocketed to the top five on the iTunes Dance Charts the first week of its release, followed by “Last Dance”. Mr. Strickland is currently starring in Vegas! the Showat the Planet Hollywood Casino & Resort in Las Vegas.

James Monroe Iglehart won a 2014 Tony Award® for his performance in Aladdin. He originated the role of Bobby in the Tony-winning musical Memphis. Other NYC: The 25th Annual…Spelling Bee and The Wiz. Film/TV: “Gotham”, “The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmitt”, “The Good Wife” and “The Electric Company” (the Silent E Soloist). James is a member of the hip-hop improv group Freestyle Love Supreme. His greatest gift is his wife, Dawn. This is an absolute blessing — a real-life wish come true!

Tickets for D23 EXPO 2015 are available at a discounted price for a limited time. Through June 30, 2015, tickets are $67 for a one-day adult admission and $48 for children 3–12. Tickets for members of D23: The Official Disney Fan Club are $58 for a one-day adult admission and $42 for children. Multi-day money-saving tickets are also available. D23 Members can save as much as $188 off the price of admission, based on the purchase of four three-day tickets at the D23 Member rate. For more information on tickets and the ticket pricing structure for D23 Members and general admission, visit D23EXPO.com.