Vanessa Hudgens Will Star In Broadway-Bound Gigi Revival
“I Remember It Well”! Not many people remember the Broadway musical Gigi based off of the novella of the same name. Having premiered in the 1970’s, the musical flopped after just 100 performances in New York and has yet to appear since. However, late last year, producers announced they were interested in launching a Broadway revival of the musical. While many, including myself, wondered why, we have now found out for several reasons why this musical is headed back to the stage. Today, Luner on Theatre brings you the exciting news that Vanessa Hudgens will star in the Broadway-bound revival of Gigi in the production’s title role!
Producers of the Broadway-bound revival of Gigi have proudly announced they have found their leading lady! Vanessa Hudgens, best known for Disney’s High School Musical, is set to star in the title role of the musical revival! The production is set to play a pre-Broadway engagement in Washington D.C. at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (Pictured Right). The production will run in Washington from January 16th, 2015 through February 12th, 2015. Opening night is set for January 29th. Eric Schaeffer is set to direct the revival. At this point in time, no dates, details or theatre have been announced for the Broadway run.
Vanessa Hudgens is a 25-year-old American actress who rose to fame upon appearing in Disney’s High School Musical series. She appeared as Gabriella Montez in High School Musical 1, 2 and 3. She has also appeared in multiple Disney Channel movies and television shows. She has released two of her own albums, V in 2006 and identified in 2008. Hudgens has also had a great acting career post High School Musical appearing in multiple movies such as Bandslam, Beastly, Spring Breakers and Gimme Shelter just to name a few. She also recently worked on the new film Kitchen Sink which is set to hit theatres in 2015. While Hudgens appeared in theatre much more often when she was younger, she has not had as much of a chance now that she is older and consistently working in Hollywood. However, in 2010, she did star as Mimi in RENT at the Hollywood Bowl over the summer.
Hudgens spoke of her excitement to be headed back to the stage in this Broadway-bound revival! She said;
“I started performing in musicals from a young age, and it has always been my dream to be on Broadway. I cannot wait to get back on stage, singing and dancing these songs and living in Gigi’s glamorous world.”
Gigi received a reading this past July in New York which Hudgens headlined in. Other well-known Broadway names that appeared in this Summer’s reading included he recent summer reading included Tony winner Victoria Clark, Corey Cott (Pictured Above Right), Tony nominee Kate Burton, Steffanie Leigh and Tony nominee Howard McGillin. No specifics regarding casting for the production have been released yet.
In a statement to the press, director Eric Schaeffer talked about how the production selected Hudgens to headline.
“From the moment we met Vanessa, we knew we found our Gigi. She is smart, gorgeous, a wonderful singer and is so luminous on stage. You cannot take your eyes off of her.”
Gigi is a musical that features a book and lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner and music by Frederick Loewe. The musical is based on of the novella Gigi by Colette which was later turned into a musical film in 1958 under the same name. The musical tells the story of a young free teenage girl, Gigi, living in Paris at the turn of the 20th century! Being groomed as a courtesan, her family tradition deems she must make a social debut. However, before she does, she encounters a young bachelor by the name of Gaston Lachaille who she captivates from the first moment. Through their interactions, Gigi is transformed into an incredibly poised young lady. This Broadway revival will feature an updated book by Emmy nominee Heidi Thomas. It is also set to include 2 songs originally written for the production which were dropped and four other songs which were written by Lerner and Loewe later in 1973. The musical debuted on Broadway in 1973 and was nominated for four Tony Awards but only went on to win one for Best Original Score. The musical has never been revived on Broadway or in the West End.
I am SO excited to hear the news that Vanessa Hudgens will be making her Broadway debut with this role! I won’t lie, upon hearing the news Gigi was interested in a Broadway revival, I found myself wondering why. The production flopped during its Broadway premiere and no casting had been announced yet with a large name attached to the title role. However, there are a variety of factors already involved in this revival that make it exciting. First, an updated book with newly added songs. This is always great news for a revival, especially one that did not do so well the first time around. An updated book with some never before heard songs from the classic Lerner and Loewe team is definitely exciting. I’m looking forward to seeing Hudgens perform live on stage in an old-fashioned musical. It’s definitely exciting for her as a performer and for Broadway to see someone so young take on such a large demanding role. I look forward to this and may just have to make my way down to D.C. to see this one before it even makes it to New York!
Don’t miss your chance to see Vanessa Hudgens in the Broadway-bound revival of Gigi! As mentioned, the pre-Broadway engagement will appear in Washington D.C. for four weeks only! After that, no official timetable has been set for the Broadway revival. Although, we can only assume that the production will need to rework itself after this run so a premiere in the 2015-2016 season seems likely! For more information, visit Gigi on Broadway’s Official Website, Facebook Page or Twitter Account. And of course, check out the rest of Luner on Theatre for all your theatre news you don’t only need but want to know and so much more!