NYC's Broadway comes to Long Island: 3 events and shows channeling the Great White Way
A taste of the Great White Way is headed to Long Island as two Broadway cabaret style performances are hitting both Nassau and Suffolk in February. Professional stage singers will take turns at the microphone in shows curated by producer/host Stephen DeAngelis of Port Washington.
“Because these combinations of performers and songs have never been done before, it is opening night and closing night in the same evening,” says DeAngelis. “You get the energy of an opening night and the emotion of a closing night.”
Each show will feature a different cast singing different songs with piano accompaniment.
Plus, a third Broadway-themed event brings the music of the big stage to an East End ice rink. Here's what you need to know:
“FROM BROADWAY WITH LOVE”
Five singers will rotate on the stage at the Krasnoff Theater at LIU Post’s Tilles Center for the Performing Arts in Brookville on Feb. 4, performing numbers from “Six the Musical,” “Cats,” “Waitress,” “Funny Girl,” “The Wizard of Oz,” “West Side Story” and more.
Featured singer Julius Thomas III, who played the title character in “Hamilton” from 2017 to 2022, enjoys the intimacy of performing cabaret style.
“Doing musical theater, there’s a big space between myself and the audience, plus there’s always a spotlight shining directly into my eyes. It’s very easy to forget the crowd is there and fall into the world of the play,” says Thomas. “With cabaret, I get to connect with people’s eyes and sing directly to them. There’s nothing like it.”
Singer Alysha Umphress (“Smokey Joe’s Cafe,” “On the Town”) will appear fresh off her sold-out three-night one-woman show at Joe’s Pub in Manhattan. She views the cabaret show structure as less restrictive.
“The crowd is looser and it provides the singer a lot more freedom,” says Umphress. “You are not married to a script or choreography. Plus, you feed off the energy in the room.”
WHEN | WHERE 8 p.m., Feb. 4, Krasnoff Theater at LIU Post’s Tilles Center for the Performing Arts, 720 Northern Blvd., Brookville
INFO 516-299-3100, tillescenter.org
“A BROADWAY VALENTINE”
Those headed out east to the Suffolk Theater in Riverhead on Feb. 11 can catch singers Emily Bautista (“Miss Saigon,” “Les Misérables”), Keri René Fuller (“Six The Musical,” “Waitress”), Lisa Howard (“The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” “Escape to Margaritaville”), Gavin Lee (“Mary Poppins,” “SpongeBob SquarePants the Broadway Musical”) and Jelani Remy (“Ain’t Too Proud — The Life and Times of the Temptations,” “The Lion King”) perform songs from their respective musicals.
“These cabaret shows give you a real mix of vocal styles,” says Lee. “There are girls that can belt high range songs to a young male tenor to someone like me, a baritone doing slightly comedic character songs. I’ll even bring my tap shoes for a few numbers.”
Lee enjoys the unique challenge that cabaret brings for him as a performer.
“With cabaret you are a lot more naked, there’s no costume or set making you look better,” he says. “You have to tell the story of the song all on your own.”
WHEN | WHERE 8 p.m., Feb. 11, Suffolk Theater, 118 E. Main Street, Riverhead
INFO 631-727-4343, suffolktheater.com
SKATE BROADWAY STYLE
Put on your blades and hit the ice to show tunes at the Buckskill Winter Club in East Hampton for Bay Street Theater’s 3rd annual “Broadway Skating Party” on Feb. 5, from 6 to 8 p.m.
“We make a playlist of Broadway favorites for everyone to skate along with ranging from upbeat numbers to some ballads,” says Michael Pintauro, Bay Street’s Director of Marketing & Communications. “It runs the gamut from Rodgers & Hammerstein to ‘Hamilton.’ ”
The rink is limited to 80 people and is open to attendees of all ages. It’s a come as you are party but people are encouraged to get festive.
“Some kids dress up as Disney princesses and ‘Frozen’ characters,” says Pintauro. “We encourage any kind of pageantry because it makes for a fun atmosphere.”
WHEN | WHERE 6 to 8 p.m., Feb. 5, 178 Buckskill Rd, East Hampton
ADMISSION For tickets ($25 per person, includes skate rental); 631-725-9500, baystreet.org