Ben Vereen, Nathan Lane To Take Part in Theatre World Awards Ceremony

Ben Vereen

Ben Vereen

The slate of performers and presenters that will participate in the upcoming Theatre World Awards ceremony have been announced. A mix of Broadway theater veterans and relative newcomers will take part in this annual event, to be held at the Music Box Theatre on June 3.

Ben Vereen, Courtney B. Vance (Lucky Guy), Anika Noni Rose, Lea Salonga, Jackie Hoffman, Wesley Taylor, Jessie Mueller, Phillip Boykin, Tony Sheldon, Isabel Keating, and Christine Lahti are among those currently scheduled to either present or perform at the Theatre World Awards. Nathan Lane will also appear as a special guest.

Directed by John Tartaglia (Avenue Q), the Theatre World Awards will be hosted by theater columnist Peter Filichia. Learn more about the event at www.theatreworldawards.org.

New Hot Spot for Broadway Talent: 54 Below

It hasn’t been open long, but 54 Below has already become a second home to Broadway stars.  You could call it a nightclub, a supper club, a cabaret, or even “Broadway’s living room” (to borrow the venue’s own phrase), but whatever you call it, 54 Below is attracting top names from the New York theater scene.  Ben Vereen (Jesus Christ Superstar), Victor Garber (Sweeney Todd), Faith Prince (Guys & Dolls), Norbert Leo Butz (Catch Me If You Can), Jackie Hoffman (The Addams Family), Andrea McArdle (Annie), Michael Arden (Big River), and Rebecca Luker (Mary Poppins) are among the many respected Broadway performers who are performing there this summer.

Located at the uppermost part of the theater district, on West 54th Street (between Broadway and Eighth Ave.), 54 Below also offers fine dining in the form of small plates, usually featuring seasonal ingredients, and classic cocktails.  Needless to say, though, most people will be going there for the music and a chance to see favorite performers in a more casual setting.  The many 7 and 8pm show times conflict with Broadway show schedules, but there are also often 11pm sets for people who want to take in both a play and an evening at the cabaret.

The truth is that many promising cabaret venues have come and gone in New York City, so it’s hard to say which ones will survive.  But 54 Below has a better shot than most given its prime location.