- - Monday, January 30, 2012

‘American Idol’ finalist going to Broadway in ‘Jekyll’

A former “American Idol” contestant is heading to Broadway with a character who, it’s safe to say, is truly two-faced.

Constantine Maroulis will play the title dual role in a revival of the musical “Jekyll & Hyde” that’s slated to come to New York in spring 2013 after a 25-week national tour that starts in San Diego on Oct. 2, Nederlander Presentations Inc. announced Sunday.

Mr. Maroulis, who was a finalist on the fourth season of “American Idol,” had a three-year run in Broadway’s “Rock of Ages” and received a best actor Tony nomination and a Drama League nomination for his performance. He also played the role of Roger Davis in a recent national tour of “Rent.”

Mr. Maroulis made his Broadway debut in “The Wedding Singer” and is currently in the title role of “Toxic Avenger” at the Alley Theatre in Houston. His debut album, “Constantine,” was released on his own label, Sixth Place Records.

“Jekyll & Hyde” features a story and lyrics by two-time Oscar winner Leslie Bricusse and music by Frank Wildhorn, who co-conceived the musical. It will be directed and choreographed by Jeff Calhoun.

Additional cast and creative team, as well as tour cities, will be announced later.

“Jekyll & Hyde” made its Broadway debut in 1997 with such songs as “This is the Moment,” “A New Life” and “Someone Like You,” earning four Tony nominations. It tells the story of a London doctor who accidentally unleashes his evil alternate personality in his quest to cure his father’s mental illness.

Robert Cuccioli played the lead, and Sebastian Bach and David Hasselhoff later took over. After 1,543 performances, the production played its final performance on Jan. 7, 2001.

Baby Lisa’s family sits down with Dr. Phil

The family of a missing Kansas City baby has taped an appearance on the “Dr. Phil” show.

Viewers can tune in Friday to watch the interview with Lisa Irwin’s parents and a private investigator who’s searching for her, the Associated Press reports.

Lisa was reported missing Oct. 4 when her father, Jeremy Irwin, came home from work around 4 a.m. and couldn’t find her. Mr. Irwin and Deborah Bradley say they think someone broke into the house and took their daughter.

Ms. Bradley has said police have accused her of being involved in Lisa’s disappearance. In tearful statements to the media early on, Ms. Bradley repeatedly insisted she doesn’t know what happened to her child.

No suspects have been named, despite an intensive search.

Emmy-winning director John Rich dies at 86

Television director John Rich, who won an Emmy Award for the memorable “All in the Family” scene showing Sammy Davis Jr. planting a kiss on Carroll O’Connor’s Archie Bunker, has died in Los Angeles at 86.

Mr. Rich also won an Emmy for “The Dick Van Dyke Show.”

According to the Associated Press, Directors Guild of America spokeswoman Sahar Moridani told the Los Angeles Times that Mr. Rich died Sunday morning at his Los Angeles home after a brief illness. There are no other details.

His 50-year Hollywood career included “I Married Joan,” “Our Miss Brooks,” “Gunsmoke” and “Bonanza.” He also directed episodes or pilots of “The Twilight Zone,” “Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.,” “Gilligan’s Island,” “The Brady Bunch,” “Maude,” “Good Times,” “The Jeffersons,” “Barney Miller” and “Newhart.”

Ukraine’s version of ‘Bachelor’ features czar’s descendant

He is a descendant of Russia’s last czar - and has lived in the jungle, starred in Bollywood movies and trained as a stuntman.

Now Scottish photographer Francis Mathew is in a new adventure: finding a bride on a reality TV show in Ukraine.

Mr. Mathew, the great-great-nephew of Nicholas II, is the star of the second season of Ukraine’s version of the popular U.S. show “The Bachelor” - in which an unmarried man picks a fiancee through a series of dates and romantic getaways.

“I’ve been very lucky in life, but very unlucky in love,” the 33-year-old, who comes across as a romantic behind bad-boy looks, told the Associated Press in an interview.

“I am actually ready for a proper relationship, I have been for a couple of years,” he said. “I am pretty fussy when it comes to choosing a long-term girlfriend, it’s very difficult to find someone to be compatible with.”

As many as 16,000 young women from across Ukraine and beyond auditioned to compete for the heart of “a prince” - as Mr. Mathew is billed by the show’s producers, even though he has no royal title.

Twenty-five contestants were selected for the show, also called “The Bachelor” in Ukrainian, and some have gotten into shouting matches and even fights over who gets to spend more time with him, according to the STB Channel, which is set to air the show in March.

The 12 episodes, which are being filmed in Ukraine, Finland, Sri Lanka and elsewhere, entail romantic dinners, a helicopter ride and Mr. Mathew taking on a 750-pound bull as a matador. Mr. Mathew speaks little Ukrainian or Russian, so both he and the contestants wear earpieces and rely on simultaneous translation. He said he hopes the project will help him reconnect with his Slavic roots.

Mr. Matthew admits that the show, in which he eliminates women one by one based on their dates until he proposes to one of the two finalists, may be provocative.

“Honestly, the concept is crazy, absolutely crazy,” Mr. Mathew said. “You have to be of a certain mindset to enter a contest like that, I think it takes courage.”

But he says he has met attractive and interesting women on the show and hopes to fall in love.

“Love works in very mysterious ways,” he said. “It does come from the most random places sometimes, the most unexpected places, so why not TV?”

The odds of finding true love, however, appear to be against Mr. Mathew. His predecessor on the show, a Ukrainian-American ballroom dancer, split with his newfound fiancee shortly after the show ended last summer. Only one of the 15 seasons of “The Bachelor” in the U.S. resulted in marriage.

Compiled from Web and wire service reports.



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