News Round-Up: June 18, 2021

Norm Lewis
Norm Lewis
Norm Lewis (screen capture)

Some news items you might have missed:

YouTube: Music theater fans – somehow I missed (but caught up on) this terrific virtual gala concert benefiting the Lyric Opera of Chicago starring Broadway stars including Gavin Creel, Nikki Renée Daniels, Norm Lewis (above) and more. Click on the link, watch and enjoy 🙂

Instinct Magazine: Fashion designer Michael Costello (a Project Runway alumn), added fuel to the Chrissy Teigen fire this week when he alleged the model and TV personality cyber bullied him with hate speech and had him blackballed in the industry. And then, folks came out with their own accusations about Costello.

Kenneth-in-the-212: Make sure you click over to Kenneth’s weekly round-up of the what’s what in LGBTQ publications like Get Out Magazine:

The cover of Get Out Magazine

NBC News: LGBTQ civil servants and service members were systematically fired or forced to resign due to their sexual orientation or gender identity over the past seven decades, and a proposed bill is seeking to have the federal government issue an official apology acknowledging its past discriminatory policies.

Media Matters: Nearly a dozen of the Fox News guests the network has presented as concerned parents or educators who oppose the teaching of so-called “critical race theory” in schools also have day jobs as Republican strategists, conservative think-tankers, or right-wing media personalities.

Out Music: Out singer/songwriter Paul Bellantoni, drops his first solo release since 2013, “Illusions.”

“’Illusions’ is about how what we perceive out of life and the people in our life aren’t always what they seem; they’re false realities. I began writing the song because I was hurt by someone close to me. It was a situation that made me feel insignificant, while around me the entire world was grasping for straws to see which way is up or down. It became my therapy.”

“It’s a lesson in learning how to be present in your own heart and forgive yourself, the ones that hurt you, and the circumstances that weigh you down.”

News Round-Up: December 31, 2020

Norm Lewis at 54 Below
Norm Lewis at 54 Below
Tony Award nominee Norm Lewis

Some news items you might have missed:

News Observer: LGBTQ people in North Carolina can no longer be prevented from getting domestic violence protective orders, the N.C. Court of Appeals ruled Thursday. North Carolina had been the only state in the country to withhold emergency protections from people seeking protection from abuse by a same-sex partner.

Instinct Magazine: My editor at my other journalistic home, Adam Dupuis, shares this wild and wooly tale of a stalker who utilized 11 different email accounts and numerous Growlr accounts in order to cyberstalk him. #strangeness

54Below: My fabulous friend (and Tony Award nominee) Norm Lewis has the perfect song for tonight – from his recent Feinstein’s/54 Below streaming concert NORM LEWIS: Christmastime Is Here! 

Facebook: Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Nebraska) wrote a lengthy breakdown of efforts to undermine the election, concluding there was no evidence of voter fraud. Sasse adds that – in private chats – no Republicans in Congress think the election was stolen.

NBC News: Grafton Police have arrested the Aurora Health Care pharmacist who intentionally spoiled more than 500 doses of the Moderna coronavirus vaccine valued around $8,000 to $11,000. He has been arrested on charges of first degree recklessly endangering safety, adulterating a prescription drug, and criminal damage to property.

Washington Examiner: Donald Trump promised in the 2016 campaign to eliminate the federal debt over a two-term presidency. Instead, he will leave office having added massively to the debt. Since his inauguration, the total national debt has increased 30% from nearly $20 trillion to $27 trillion as of Monday.

News Round-Up: July 17, 2020

Broadway star Norm Lewis

Some news items you might have missed:

What To Watch This Weekend: I’ll definitely be watching Tony Award nominee and all-around super-talent Norm Lewis (above) in concert with SiriusXM’s Seth Rudetsky at 8 pm ET/5 pm PT. Broadway audiences know the oh-so-handsome Lewis from his performances in Phantom of the Opera, Once on This Island, Sondheim on Sondheim, The Little Mermaid, Les Misérables, Chicago and more.

Towleroad: Donald Trump’s niece, Mary Trump, shares in her newly released book, Too Much and Never Enough, that she decided not to come out to her family after hearing her grandmother call international pop star Elton John a “faggot.”

Boy Culture: Matt Rettenmund calls out Chuck Woolery’s bs after the former game show host said COVID-19 is a hoax, then u-turned because his son “tested positive for the virus,” and then deleted his Twitter account.

KIT212: Kenneth’s latest round-up of local LGBTQ publications leads off with South Florida’s Hotspots (below) featuring a profile on Anthony Catanzaro, once known as the ‘Superman of fitness.’ Catanzaro has released a new coffee table book to help fund his battle with Parkinson’s Disease.

Anthony Catanzaro covers South Florida’s Hotspots (photo: John Falocco)

Buzzfeed News: Current and former employees of The Ellen DeGeneres Show say behind the scenes, they faced racism, fear, and intimidation. “That ‘be kind’ bullshit only happens when the cameras are on. It’s all for show.”

Pink News: A judge in Poland has struck down one of the European country’s so-called “LGBT-free” zones ruling the policy violated the constitutional ban on discrimination and turned a “blind eye to reality.” Back in February, nearly 100 Polish municipal or local governments proclaimed themselves to be “free from LGBT” ideology and pledged to refrain from encouraging tolerance for gay people.

Out Music: In advance of his new six-song concept EP, In A Dream, Troye Sivan drops the second single, “Easy,” an infectious plea to set a relationship back on course.

The leadoff track, “Take Yourself Home,” trended at #1 on Twitter worldwide following its release earlier this year and has now attained over 76 million cumulative global streams. Check out the new single below.

Audra McDonald, Norm Lewis, Megan Hilty & Cheyenne Jackson Join ‘Seth Concert Series’

Audra McDonald, Norm Lewis join Seth Rudetsky for virtual solo concert events
L-R Audra McDonald, Norm Lewis

Award-winning stars of the stage and screen Audra McDonald, Norm Lewis, Megan Hilty, and Cheyenne Jackson will join the line-up of talent slated to participate in The Seth Concert Series, the weekly virtual series based on Seth Rudetsky’s international Broadway series that began at The Art House in Provincetown.

Each weekly show will premiere Sunday nights at 8PM EST with a second showing Mondays at 3PM EST for viewers in other time zones like the UK. Tickets are available at BroadwayWorld Events for $20.00 (early bird) and $25.00 each.

Hosted by musical director and Sirius XM host Seth Rudetsky, the first virtual event took place on Sunday, May 31 and featured Tony Award-winning actress Kelli O’Hara.

The series has since featured intimate conversations and incredible musical moments with Jeremy Jordan, Jessie Mueller, Lea Salonga, and Melissa Errico.

Audra McDonald will be Seth’s guest this Sunday, July 12; Norm Lewis will appear on July 19, followed by Megan Hilty on July 26, and Cheyenne Jackson on August 2.

News Round-Up: November 16, 2018

InstaHunk Max Emerson (r) snowboarding in Quebec

Some news items you might have missed:

• What to do when a November storm dumps lots of snow on you? Go snowboarding! Someone might have told Max Emerson to take a few bits of clothing with him, but then – when you’ve got a Porsche, you don’t keep it in the garage.

• Tanzania just lost $10 million in aid from its second biggest donor, Denmark, thanks to the recent homophobic crackdown in the East African country.

• Hat tip to Kenneth-in-the-212 who found the ultimate ‘Hunk’ of House Hunters – Liev Schreiber – who, along with SNL’s Leslie Jones, totally spoof every cliche you’ve ever seen on the show. This is pretty funny.

• Gubernatorial hopeful Stacey Abrams has acknowledged she will not be able to close the gap between herself and her Republican opponent, former Secretary of State Brian Kemp. But, she did not concede the race saying Kemp had spent years working to suppress voters in Georgia in order to tilt the contest his way.

• A gay man in Miami says a Lyft driver spewed homophobic slurs at him during his ride before pulling a gun on him. The driver allegedly stopped the car and forcibly removed the man from the car, kicking him in the process and saying he wanted to “kill everyone who is gay.”

• I’ll be interviewing the oh-so-dashing and talented Mr. Norm Lewis about this his new holiday album soon, but for now … 🙂

GMA: Broadway’s ONCE ON THIS ISLAND Performs “Why We Tell The Story”

The cast of Broadway’s Once on This Island joined Good Morning America co-anchor Robin Roberts to discuss the revival of the musical and perform the show’s finale, “Why We Tell the Story.”

The neat new digital series from GMA, “Dressing Room Reveal with Robin Roberts,” goes backstage to Robin Robert’s dressing room for intimate performances and conversations.

Ah. This gives me life.

Once on This Island unfolds as a group of storytellers, during a nighttime rainstorm, calm a young girl of their village with the story of Ti Moune, a Caribbean island country girl who falls in love with an aristocrat.

I love this show so much: the message, the music, the people.

And speaking of the people I love a lot :)…

T. Oliver Reid, the show’s dance captain, and I worked together in two Broadway shows – Chicago and Follies. As much as I’ve laughed through the years with T, I’ve also always enjoyed his talent and awesome work ethic. When you’re on stage with T, you know you better keep up!

And the wondermous and handsome Tony Award nominee Norm Lewis (Porgy & Bess, Phantom of the Opera, Side Show), who I’ve known for even longer than T., was playing the role of “Agwé,” god of water, when this was filmed.

So, double joy for me watching this clip.

Watch the gorgeous cast of Once On This Island perform “Why We Tell the Story” below and feel your spirit renewed.

Happy Sunday!

Tony Award winner Lea Salonga, Tony Award nominee Norm Lewis and GMA’s Robin Roberts

I Love Me Some Norm Lewis

There is simply nothing to not love about Tony Award nominee, Broadway favorite leading man (and all around great guy) Norm Lewis.

Watch him share this quick video with funny theater expert Seth Rudetsky.

Sunday Showtune: “Part Of Your World”

Check out the beautiful wirework used to simulate swimming from the Japanese production of The Little Mermaid at the Shiki Theatre Company. Beautiful and convincing, although I’m not sure about Ariel’s floating hair…?

The Broadway production of the stage show utilized wheelie sneakers to give the illusion the performers were swimming. I’ve posted a clip from the Broadway show also, just so you can compare.

Added bonus: Broadway featured the fantastic Sierra Boggess as “Ariel” and Norm Lewis as “King Triton.”

(h/t TRR reader Glenn)