Donna Feore has choreographed performances at the Opéra National de Lyon France and the Canadian Opera Company but she’s best known for her work directing at the Stratford Festival, North America’s largest classical repertory theatre company.
Stephanie Rothenberg is currently in the ensemble on Broadway in “Sunset Boulevard” with Glenn Close.
Prior to appearing in “Sunset Boulevard,” Rothenberg was a part of the original Broadway ensemble of “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” starring Daniel Radcliffe and understudied the role of Rosemary, performing it many times opposite Radcliffe. She then assumed the role full time when Nick Jonas replaced Daniel.
Between Broadway appearances Stephanie starred as Maria in “The Sound of Music” at the Stratford Festival, she appeared in Aziz Ansari’s popular Netflix show “Master of None” and acted in an award winning short film that might be on its way to an Oscar nod in 2018.
I spoke with Stephanie between performances in New York, our conversation, which covers the highs and lows of life onstage, will inspire anyone who has had a bad audition, or a bunch of call-backs (but didn’t get the job) to work smarter and harder.
Irene Sankoff and David Hein, the co-writers of the hit Broadway show “Come From Away,” are my guests on this podcast.
Irene and David’s path to success began with a playful musical at the Toronto Fringe Festival, “My Mother’s Lesbian Jewish Wiccan Wedding,” which attracted the attention of producer David Mirvish who brought the production to a larger theatre.
Mirvish also discovered “The Drowsy Chaperone” at the Toronto Fringe, so the pressure for “Wiccan Wedding” to succeed was high. Things went well and soon they were working on “Come From Away.”
“Come From Away” is set in the town of Gander, Newfoundland, in the week following the September 11 attacks, when 38 planes were ordered to land unexpectedly in the small town.
The people of Gander opened their homes and their hearts to the thousands of travelers, from all over the world, who were stranded.
In the podcast Irene and David reveal how their creative process began with a trip to Gander, Newfoundland to interview the town’s people and collect true stories that became the foundation for the musical.
They explain the development process, that included meaningful workshops with theatre students at Sheridan College’s Canadian Music Theatre Project and Goodspeed Musicals, a non-profit organization dedicated to musical theater based in Connecticut.
The students at both locations worked on the script and Irene & David discuss how significant this process was to shaping the show.
You’ll also hear how the show hits the sweet spot between David’s love of folk music and Irene’s love of Broadway musicals.
Click for the “Come From Away,” Original Broadway Cast Recording
On opening night Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Sophie Grégoire Trudeau attended the show and met with Irene and David.
Click the arrow near the top of this page, or this iTunes link, to listen to this podcast about “Come From Away.”