It's the age of the printing press; the age of newspaper barons; and the age of newspaper boys - also known as Newsies. That's where Disney's story begins, takes place, and ends.
Disney's Newsies, a highly-successful Broadway play, is currently touring the United States. This week, it visits The Fox Theatre in Atlanta.
The musical, featuring a score by eight-time Academy Award® winner Alan Menken (Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, and Sister Act) and Jack Feldman and a book by four-time Tony® Award winner Harvey Fierstein (La Cage aux Folles, Torch Song Trilogy), will play here through Sunday, January 25.
The play opened Tuesday night to a packed house. Children were in attendance, and as always, I like to let you know when it is and when it is not appropriate to take them. I believe this play is appropriate for children, although keep in mind, just because it is branded Disney does not make it a fairytale suitable for all ages. Tweens and teens would be fine to see this play. Aspiring and budding theatrical young adults will love it, and it will inspire them to reach for greater heights.
Newsies follows the story of Jack Kelly, one of the homeless and orphaned children who sell newspapers in New York City during the 1890s to support themselves. Jack and his fellow newsboys work for Joseph Pulitzer selling his newspaper, the New York World, on the streets of Manhattan. The story ebbs and flows and follows Jack and his subsequent battle and strike against Mr. Pulitzer and the New York World. As you can imagine, the story ends with the Newsies victorious.
The story of Jack Kelly and the strike he helped lead is based on the true-story of a Newsies strike which occurred in 1899. Most of the characters are fictional, but it was so interesting to hear the story and learn about this part of our Nation's history.
Originally, Newsies was only supposed to last for a limited time on New York City's Broadway circuit, but after receiving much critical and public acclaim, it was extended to an open-ended run. The show went on to earn 8 Tony Award nominations including Best Musical, Best Choreography, and Best Original Score. (It won two of those nominations.)
Disney's touring troupe is nothing less than spectacular. It is full of young actors who fill the stage with their high energy and amazing talent, bringing the 1890s to life. If you are a theatre or Newsies buff, you are probably familiar with a lot of the songs and dance numbers from the show. Some of the more famous are "Santa Fe" and "Seize the Day."
Here are those two numbers, performed in 2011, on Disney-owned ABC's, "The View:"
Are you a Fansie? If so, drive to Atlanta's Fox Theatre before the Newsies run ends. It won't be here long, and you absolutely do not want to miss this show! Heck, I may even go back a second time....
Check out this short video showcasing the National Touring Group. Some pretty amazing talent here!
*Visit the Broadway in Atlanta facebook page to find out how to get tickets as low as $25!