Just about this time last year, Michelle and I headed down to Millburn, New Jersey to attend the dress rehearsal for a new musical called Newsies at Paper Mill Playhouse.
It’s pretty much a night I’ll never forget… we met Alan Menken, we saw an awesome and energetic show, and I barely got any sleep that night.
Since then, we (impatiently) waited to hear if Newsies would come to Broadway, and if Jeremy Jordan would take on his role of Jack Kelly; we saw Tony nominations and a few Tony wins, and almost 100% capacity every single night.
I’ve seen it twice since it opened on Broadway, including Tuesday night when Jeremy Jordan played Jack Kelly for the last time. Ya know, on to bigger and better things like marriage and a recurring role on “Smash”.
I think the show is a blast. It’s a gem. And despite the book problems and the repetitive dance moves, it feels so special to because I saw it from the very beginning. That’s the first time I’ve had that experience. But for me, it all comes down to Jeremy. Jack Kelly is pretty much the king of the show. He’s the only character with a ton of depth. And Jeremy just brings it home.
After seeing the dress rehearsal at Paper Mill, I immediately bought tickets to Bonnie & Clyde — a show I had zero interest in seeing — just because Jeremy was making his Broadway debut in it. (In fact, he was rehearsing for Bonnie & Clyde while performing in New Jersey for Newsies.) I’m still terribly frustrated B&C closed so quickly — it’s horribly underrated. And I’m not just saying that because of Jeremy either. But anyway…
I guess it was fate. Bonnie & Clyde closed just as the announcement of Newsies moving to Broadway was made official and Jack Kelly was back.
I haven’t felt this strongly for a performer in a very long time. Sure, it helps that he’s attractive. He’s charismatic, you can tell he is passionate about his job, and gee — can he sing.
So if you haven’t had the opportunity to discover this talent yet… I wanted to share a few clips so you can draw your own conclusion.
…and maybe join his fan club too.
“Santa Fe” from Newsies (with Alan Menken):
“When I Drive” from Bonnie & Clyde:
“Maybe I’m Amazed” from Joyful Noise movie
“If the World Looked Like You” (a bonus)
Here’s wishing Jeremy lots of luck in all he does! I will certainly be watching! (And wishing and hoping that he performs live from time to time.)