Three-time Tony award nominee André De Shields is back on Broadway at the Walter Kerr Theatre as Hermes in Hadestown, the new musical by 2019 Tony award nominee Anaïs Mitchell, developed with and directed by 2019 Tony award nominee Rachel Chavkin.
André won the Drama Desk Award and the Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical. On June 11, he’ll receive the 2019 Richard Seff Award from the Actors’ Equity Foundation, which honors veteran stage actors’ best supporting performances of the year.
Below is my 48 hours with André which includes a surprise guest after the Sunday matinee, the Drama Desk Awards, the Tony Honors cocktail reception and the listening party for the Original Broadway Cast Recording of Hadestown.
(June 2, 2019, 6:00 p.m.) A quick visit with the legendary Micki Grant and Lori Minor after the Sunday matinee.
6:15 p.m. Scott Rudin’s Drama Desk Party at Aureole.
“Hadestown in the house,” said Mr. De Shields in his speech at the 64th Annual Drama Desk Awards at Town Hall in New York on June 2. “Thank you Drama Desk. It only took 9 nominations. As you all can see, I am dressed tonight incognegro in order not be confused with my co-star Patrick Page who 8 times a week teaches me new lessons in how to create a character. Thank you Patrick. Anaïs Mitchell, Rachel Chavkin, Dale Frazen, Mara Isaacs, I want to thank you for let me be myself again (he sang). Goodnight.”
Hadestown also won in the categories of Outstanding Director of a Musical for Rachel Chavkin, Outstanding Lighting Design for Bradley King and Outstanding Sound Design for Nevin Steinberg and Jessica Paz.
June 3, 2019, 6:00 p.m. – Tony Honors cocktail party at Sofitel New York.
On June 3rd, the brightest lights of Broadway gathered at the Sofitel New York for the 2019 Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theatre Awards presented to Broadway industry Broadway Inspirational Voices founded by Michael McElroy; Broadway musical director and arranger Jason Michael Webb (Choir Boy) the late Marin Mazzie (accepted by her husband, Jason Daniely), Sonny Tilders and Creative Technology Company (King Kong) Peter Entin, retired Vice President of Theatre Operations for The Shubert Organization; Joseph Blakely Forbes, Founder and President, Scenic Art Studios, Inc. and FDNY Engine 54, Ladder 4, Battalion 9.
As previously announced, Judith Light will receive this year’s Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award “for her impassioned advocacy to end HIV/AIDS and her support for LGBTQ+ and human rights.” Actress Rosemary Harris, playwright Terrence McNally and composer Harold Wheeler each will receive a Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre.
Hadestown has been nominated for 14 Tony awards including Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical for De Shields and his co-star Patrick Page, Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical and Best Original Score for Anaïs Mitchell, Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical for Eva Noblezada, Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical for Amber Gray, Best Scenic Design of a Musical for Rachel Hauck, Best Costume Design of a Musical for Michael Krass, Best Lighting Design of a Musical for Bradley King, Best Sound Design of a Musical for Nevin Steinberg and Jessica Paz, Best Direction of a Musical for Rachel Chavkin, Best Choreography for David Neumann and Best Orchestrations for Michael Chorney and Todd Sickafoose. The 2019 Tony Awards will be broadcast live from Radio City Music Hall in New York City, on Sunday, June 9th on CBS.
Hadestown marks the first time in over a decade that a woman has been the solo author of a musical: writing the music, lyrics, and book, and is the fourth time in Broadway history a woman has accomplished this creative feat. The show originated as Mitchell’s indie theater project that toured Vermont which she then turned into an acclaimed album. With Chavkin, her artistic collaborator, Hadestown has been transformed into a genre-defying new musical that blends modern American folk music with New Orleans-inspired jazz to reimagine a sweeping ancient tale.
June 3, 2019, 7:45 p.m. The Hadestown Listening Party at The Royalton
The cast and creative team celebrated the Original Broadway Cast Recording of Hadestown at The Royalton on June 3rd, which is having a unique and unconventional release schedule. On Friday, June 7, 13 tracks from Hadestown, written by celebrated singer-songwriter and two-time 2019 Tony Award nominee Anaïs Mitchell, developed with innovative director and 2019 Tony Award nominee Rachel Chavkin, will be made available digitally. Three of those songs, “Way Down Hadestown,” “Our Lady of the Underground,” and “Wait for Me,” were released on June 4th 12:01 AM.
The rest of the double album which features 40 tracks spanning over two hours of music will be rolled out in three curated character-themed drops.
Anaïs Mitchell said, “A huge thanks to all of our friends for their patience as we take a little more time with our Original Broadway Cast Recording than originally anticipated! We got deep into editing and mixing these two-plus hours’ worth of beautiful performances and realized we didn’t have the heart to rush what feels like a very special recording that we hope will live for a long time! We’ve decided to release the entirety of the album in a few installments over the course of the next few weeks as ‘character drops.’ We hope this will give folks a chance to appreciate all over again the unique gifts of our unicorn company and give us the time we need to make sure we are creating the most magical recording possible!”
Schedule for the drops
Tuesday, June 4 at 12:01 AM
- “Way Down Hadestown“
- “Wait For Me (“Hey, the big artiste…”) [Intro]”
- “Wait For Me”
- “Our Lady of the Underground”
Friday, June 7 – Additional highlights
- “Livin’ It Up On Top”
- “Hey, Little Songbird”
- “When The Chips Are Down (“Songbird vs. rattlesnake…”) [Intro]”
- “When The Chips Are Down”
- “Gone, I’m Gone”
- “Why We Build The Wall”
- “Why We Build The Wall (“Behind closed doors…”) [Outro]”
- “Road to Hell (Reprise)”
Friday, June 28 – Character Drop 1: Hades and Persephone
Friday, July 12 – Character Drop 2: Hermes, the Fates, and the Workers Chorus
Friday, July 26 – Character Drop 3: Orpheus and Eurydice
The Hadestown Original Broadway Cast Recording is produced by David Lai, Todd Sickafoose, and Mitchell, co-produced by Mara Isaacs and Hunter Arnold, and executive produced by Dale Franzen, Tom Kirdahy, Craig Balsam, and Thomas M. Neff. The album is distributed by ADA Worldwide in partnership with Arts Music.
The current awards tally for Hadestown includes the 2019 Drama League Award for Outstanding Production of a Musical, the 2019 Chita Rivera Award for Outstanding Choreography in a Broadway Show for David Neumann, and 6 Outer Critics Circle Awards in the categories of Outstanding New Broadway Musical, André De Shields for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical, Amber Gray for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical, Anaïs Mitchell for Outstanding New Score, Rachel Chavkin for Outstanding Director of a Musical and Bradley King for Outstanding Lighting Design.
Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers, musicians and corporations. Lia is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.
All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2019 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at firstname.lastname@example.org