DENVER - It’s the new musical that’s expected to draw huge sell-out audiences on Broadway.
But, before Frozen opens in New York City, it’ll open in Denver. The movie-turned-musical will be in front of an audience for the first time on Thursday, August 17th.
Though happy that the show is premiering in the Mile High City, some audience members may secretly wonder “Why Denver?”
“People don’t realize the audience is a part of the creation of the show,” said Thomas Schumacher, president and producer for Disney Theatrical Productions. “So we need to invite the audience in. We have to come to a city that has a fantastic theater… We have to come to a city that has a smart, educated audience that goes to see a lot of theater. We have that here. And we have to come to a place that’s hospitable for our team to stay in.
And all of those elements can be found here in Denver.”
Schumacher says putting the show on the stage at the Denver Center for the Performing arts for seven weeks will allow directors, producers, musicians, and cast members alike to see the performance and make adjustments before the Broadway version is finalized. And it seems like Disney favors Denver as the place for putting finishing touches on a show.
“This is the third time we’ve launched something in Denver, so we lean on Denver for that” Schumacher said. “This is a major arts center in America.”
Work on the production began in Denver the day after Memorial Day. The actors in Frozen say they’re excited to put the show on stage in Denver before it debuts in Broadway. But Schumacher says audience members shouldn’t expect an exact replica of the popular movie.
“The movie was so widely embraced… but now we start again,” he said.
The stage production is longer than the movie, lasting about 2 ½ hours; and it features triple the number of songs in the movie (21 to be exact) along with new scenes and new opportunities to get to know the characters better.
“We’re creating a brand new piece of work for the stage and the audience; and an audience of all ages,” said director Michael Grandage.
Two of the main characters in the movie feel the same way. Patti Murin, who plays Anna, and Caissie Levy, who plays Elsa agree that the production is for a wide range of people with a central message to which all can relate.
“I think it’s about two people who aren’t really sure of who they are. (But) by the end in trusting themselves and in each other, finally feel whole again,” said Levy.
Finally putting the production on stage in Denver is a step that the cast members are anticipating just as much as audiences are.
“It’s exciting and overwhelming in the best possible way,” said Murin. “I’m really excited for people to actually see it.”
For ticket information, click here.
And, yes, they will sing Let it Go.
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