Great Film Composers
Tony Award winner Idina Menzel is a charismatic star of stage, film and television. In this special Friday Night Is Music Night, recorded at the Hackney Empire, she performs songs from throughout her career with the sixty piece BBC Concert Orchestra under the baton of leading West End conductor Mike Dixon.
Idina received a Tony nomination for her Broadway debut performance as Maureen, in the original production of the Pulitzer Prize-winning hit RENT, which celebrates it's 20th anniversary this year. She went on to star in the West End premiere of 'WICKED' where she received the Theatregoers Choice Award for Best Actress in a Musical.
In film, Idina appeared opposite Susan Sarandon, Patrick Dempsey and Amy Adams in Disney's hit, ENCHANTED, directed by Kevin Lima, and prior to that, was seen in director Chris Columbus' film version of the Pulitzer and Tony Award winning musical RENT, in which she reprised her role as Maureen. Idina is also to be seen in the cult TV hit Glee ...
Tonight, in 'Idina Menzel and Friends', listeners will discover a unique entertainer. A powerhouse performer, by turns sassy, funny and heartfelt.
Programme first broadcast on Friday 26th April.
Idina Menzel - up close
An intimate portrait of the life and career of the Tony award winning singer and actress Idina Menzel - in her own words. From her early days in the Broadway musical Rent to starring in the West End production of Wicked, Idina's stellar rise is charted and celebrated.
An Insiders View by Musical Theatre Star Elaine Paige
The sound of the wonderful Idina Menzel rehearsing could be heard as soon as I walked through the stage door, I was so looking forward to seeing her again, but first I had to settle myself and get the proverbial cup of tea! Walking down the corridor towards my dressing room I passed a door with a sign taped to it that read ‘Don’t poo in this toilet!’ The glamour of showbiz, eh? It did make me chuckle.
After rehearsals with Idina – I won’t spoil it here by telling you what we sing, you’ll have to listen tonight – it was out for a quick bite to eat at a restaurant opposite, before the concert commenced. Plaice goujans and chips! Naughty, but delicious. As I sat eating I could see the crowds queuing to get in to the theatre and the excitement building. Back in the theatre to prepare, everyone was getting ready to go on; musicians milling around all clutching different instruments, Mike Dixon the MD giving last minutes instructions, Anthony Cherry our Friday Night producer wishing everyone luck as Idina walked towards the stage.
Curtain up! And as the first notes reverberated through the theatre I could hear the roar of approval from the audience. Thrilling! This was going to be a special night.
Mike Dixon graduated from Trinity College of Music in 1979 and since then has become one of the most experienced and respected musical forces in London’s West End and on British television. His work spans all genres of music as Musical Supervisor, Musical Director, Arranger and Composer......
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