can anyone give me a detailed background on the creation of the broadway muscial Rent?

-actors in the original cast

-synopsis

-composer and his life

-etc.

MUCH APPRECIATED!!!

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  • 1 decade ago
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    On the RENT dvd there is a documentary titled No day But Today. It is a very emotional documentary about the life of Jonathan Larson and the making of RENT. (I recommend renting it!)

    FROM: www.musicalheaven.com

    Rent

    Book, Music & Lyrics by Jonathan Larson

    Produced by Jeffrey Seller, Kevin McCollum, Allan S. Gordon and the New York Theatre Workshop

    Directed by Michael Greif

    Choreography by Marlies Yearby

    Opened April 29, 1996 at the Nederlander Theatre

    Synopsis

    Rent deals with starving artists living in New York City's East Village. It focuses on the lives of Mark, a film-maker, who's girlfriend, Maureen, a drama queen performance-artist-turned-lesbian, leaves him for another woman, Joanne who is an attorney. Mark lives with his roommate Roger, a struggling musician who just wants to write "one great song" before he dies of AIDS.

    One day he meets Mimi, an S&M dancer also with AIDS, and who is addicted to heroin.They fall in love. Mark and Roger's ex-roommate Tom Collins, a philosopher, who has just returned from M.I.T meets and falls in love with Angel, a Latino street-drummer/drag queen.They also have AIDS. Mark and Roger are continuosly hounded by their ex-roommate Benny, who is now their extremely wealthy landlord begging them for the rent. It focuses on a year in their lives, and their struggles of paying the rent, eviction, death, drugs, and living one day at a time.

    Song List

    Act I

    * Tune Up #1 ..............Mark, Roger, Mrs. Cohen,

    * Voice Mail #1 ..............Mark, Roger, Mrs. Cohen,

    .......................Collins, Benny

    * Rent ......................The Company

    * You Okay Honey?..............................Angel, Collins

    * One Song Glory .......................................Roger

    * Light My Candle .................................Roger, Mimi

    * Tune Up #2

    * Voice Mail #2..........................Mr. & Mrs. Jefferson

    * Today 4 U.............................................Angel

    * You'll See...............Benny, Mark, Collins, Roger, Angel

    * Tango: Maureen.................................Mark, Joanne

    * Life Support......................Paul, Gordon, The Company

    * Out Tonight..........................................Mimi

    * Another Day........................Roger, Mimi, The Company

    * Will I?..................................Steve, The Company

    * On the Street...................................The Company

    * Santa Fe ............................Collins and The Company

    * I'll Cover You ..............................Angel, Collins

    * We're Okay...........................................Joanne

    * Christmas Bells.................................The Company

    * Over the Moon.......................................Maureen

    * La Vie Boheme/I Should Tell You.................The Company

    ACT II

    * Seasons Of Love ................................The Company

    * Happy New Year

    * Voice Mail #3..............Mimi, Roger, Mark,

    Happy New Year B..........Maureen, Joanne, Collins,Angel, Mrs.

    ................. Cohen, Alexi Darling, Benny

    * Take Me Or Leave Me .........................Maureen, Joanne

    * Without You .....................................Roger, Mimi

    * Voice Mail #4.................................Alexi Darling

    * Contact .........................................The Company

    * I'll Cover You (Reprise) ................Collins, The Company

    * Halloween ...........................................Mark

    * Goodbye, Love....................Mark, Mimi, Roger, Maureen,

    ................... Joanne, Collins, Benny

    * What You Own, ..........Pastor, Mark, Collins, Benny, Roger

    * Voice Mail #5...................Roger's Mom, Mimi's Mom, Mr.

    .................... Jefferson, Mrs. Cohen

    * Your Eyes, .........................Roger

    * Finale B .........................Roger, The Company

    Info

    Original Cast included: Gilles Chaisson, Taye Diggs, Wilson Jermaine Heredia, Rodney Hicks, Kristen Lee Kelly, Jesse L. Martin, Idina Menzel, Aiko Nakasone, Timothy Britten Parker, Adam Pascal, Anthony Rapp, Daphne Rubin-Vega, Gwen Stewart, Byron Utley & Fredi Walker

    Awards

    Winner of the 1996 Pulitzer Prize for Best American Drama

    Winner of the 1996 New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Musical.

    Winner of the 1996 Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Off-Broadway Musical.

    Winner of the 1996 Drama League Award for Best Musical.

    Winner of six 1996 Drama Desk Awards including Best Musical, Book, Score, and Lyrics.

    Winner of four 1996 Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Score, Best Book (both Jonathan Larson) and Best Featured Actor in a Musical (Wilson Jermaine Heredia).

    FROM: wikipedia.com

    RENT started as a staged reading in 1993 at the New York Theatre Workshop, followed by a studio production that played a three-week run a year later. However, the version that is now known worldwide, a result of the years-long collaborative and editing process between Larson and the producers and director, was not publicly performed before Larson's death. Larson died unexpectedly of an aortic dissection, believed to have been caused by Marfan syndrome, in the early morning on January 25, 1996. It was ten days before his 36th birthday, only hours after the final dress rehearsal of Rent and the day of its off-Broadway opening at the New York Theatre Workshop, near the intersection of Second Avenue and East 4th Street.

    He had been suffering chest pains and nausea for several days prior, but doctors could not find signs of a heart attack and so misdiagnosed it either as flu or stress. The show premiered off-Broadway that night, on schedule. Larson's parents (who were flying in for the show anyway) gave their blessing to open the show. The cast had agreed beforehand that in light of the tragedy they would just sing through the show that night sitting at three tables lined up on stage. But by the time the show got to its high energy "La Vie Boheme", the cast could no longer contain themselves and did the rest of the show as it was meant to be.

    Rent played through its planned engagement to sold-out crowds and was continuously extended. The decision was finally made to move the show to Broadway, and it opened at the Nederlander Theatre on April 29, 1996. In addition to the New York Theatre Workshop, Rent was and is produced by Jeffrey Seller, who was introduced to Larson's work when attending an off-Broadway performance of Boho Days, and two of his producer friends who also wished to support the work, Kevin McCollum and Allan S. Gordon.

  • Jonathan Larson based Rent on Puccini's "La Boheme." Most of the actors seen in the movie are from the original cast, with the exception of Mimi and Joanne.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rent_%28musical%29

    Source(s): I love the musical.
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