The national tour of the Tony-winning Broadway musical Bandstand, readying itself to commence at College Station, TX on October 29-30, 2019, following two preview performances in Oklahoma City, OK on October 25-26, has its cast. Zack Zaromatidis (Donny Novitski) and Jennifer Elizabeth Smith (Julia Trojan) lead a company that will also include Roxy York (Mrs. June Adams), Rob Clove (Jimmy Campbell), Benjamin Powell (Davy Zlatic), Scott Bell (Nick Radel), Louis Jannuzzi (Wayne Wright), and Jonmichael Tarleton (Johnny Simpson). The cast also includes Shaunice Alexander, Beth Anderson, Michael Bingham, Milena J. Comeau, Ryan P. Cyr, Sarah Dearstyne, Michael Hardenberg, Andre Malcolm, Kaitlyn Mayse, Matthew Mucha, Mallory Nolting, Taylor Okey, Katie Pohlman, Oz Shoshan, and Cameron Turner.
Featuring music by Richard Oberacker and book and lyrics by Robert Taylor and Oberacker, Bandstand was originally directed and choreographed on Broadway by Andy Blankenbuehler. The creative team for the tour includes Tony nominee David Korins and associate Justin West (Scenic Design), Tony Award–winner Paloma Young (Costume Design), Tony Award winner Jeff Croiter (Lighting Design), Tony Award–winner Nevin Steinberg (Original Broadway Sound Design), David Thomas (Tour Sound Design), J. Jared Janas and Dave Bova (Makeup, Hair and Wig Design), Tony Award® nominee Greg Anthony Rassen (Co-Orchestrator and Music Arranger), Tony Award® winner and 2017 Tony Award® nominee Bill Elliott (Co-Orchestrator), Fred Lassen (Music Supervisor), Gina Rattan (Tour Director), with choreography restaged and additional choreography by Marc Heitzman.
“It’s 1945. As America’s soldiers come home to ticker-tape parades and overjoyed families, Private First Class Donny Novitski, singer and songwriter, struggles to rebuild the life he left behind. When NBC announces a national competition to find the nation’s next great musical superstars, Donny sees a lifeline for himself and some fellow veterans that gives them the purpose they so desperately need. Together, they form a band unlike any the nation has ever seen. Along the way, they discover the power of music to face the impossible, find their voice, and finally feel like they have a place to call home.”
Bandstand originally opened on Broadway on April 26, 2017 at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre where it played 166 performances and won the 2017 Tony Award for Best Choreography. The cast featured Corey Cott and Laura Osnes in the leads, with Beth Leavel, Alex Bender, Joe Carroll, Brandon James Ellis, James Nathanial Hopkins, and Geoff Packard providing support.
Mark Robinson is the author of the two-volume encyclopedia The World of Musicals, The Disney Song Encyclopedia, and The Encyclopedia of Television Theme Songs. His forthcoming book, Sitcommentary: The Television Comedies That Changed America, will hit the shelves in October, 2019. He maintains a theater and entertainment blog at markrobinsonwrites.com.