Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

Lia Chang Photos: Inside THE FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE CD Release Concert with André De Shields, Kevin Mambo, Adam Chanler-Berat, Michael Friedman and More

Michael Friedman and André De Shields. Photo by Lia Chang

Michael Friedman and André De Shields. Photo by Lia Chang

The audience in the sold-out house of The Fortress of Solitude Original Cast CD Release Concert at Joe’s Pub at The Public Theater on Monday, April 13 were treated to a glorious night of music featuring tracks from the CD sung by original cast members André De Shields, Kevin Mambo, Adam Chanler-Berat, Kyle Beltran, Britton Smith, Akron Watson, Juson Williams, Rebecca Naomi Jones, Ken Barnett, Carla Duren, Jahi Kearse, Malaiyka Reid and Conor Ryan, accompanied by musical director Kimberly Grigsby on the keys.

André De Shields, Daniel Aukin and Kevin Mambo. Photo by Lia Chang

André De Shields, Daniel Aukin and Kevin Mambo. Photo by Lia Chang

2015-4-13_fortress_Photo by Lia Chang 4The show, which was produced by The Public Theater (Artistic Director, Oskar Eustis; Executive Director, Patrick Willingham), is based on the national best-selling novel of the same name by Jonathan Lethem, with a book by Itamar Moses, music and lyrics by Michael Friedman, and conceived and directed by Daniel Aukin. Time Out New York raved, “Michael Friedman’s score draws excitingly on period sounds” and according to The New York Times, “the score flows in undulating rivers of soul, funk, punk and rap.” Friedman wrote the musicals Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and Love’s Labour’s Lost, also produced at The Public Theater and available from Ghostlight Records. THE FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE has orchestrations by John Clancy, with additional orchestrations by Matt Beck. The 24-track, 70-minute recording was produced by Dean Sharenow and Kurt Deutsch. To order the CD, please visit www.sh-k-boom.com/fortress or click here to purchase on iTunes.

The Company of The Fortress of Solitude. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

The Company of The Fortress of Solitude. Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

The Fortress of Solitude scored four Lucille Lortel Award nominations in the categories of outstanding musical, choregrapher (Camille A. Brown), lead actor in a musical (Adam Chanler-Berat), featured actor in a musical (Kevin Mambo).

Hamilton tops Lucille Lortel Award Nominations along with Into the Woods, Between Riverside and Crazy, The Invisible Hand, The Nether and The Fortress of Solitude 

Set List
Superman/If I Could Fly/Grab Something
(Adam, Kyle, Kevin, Akron, Juson, Britton)
Ballad of Barrett Rude, Sr.
(André, Rebecca Naomi Jones, Carla Duren, Malaiyka Reid)
Painting
(Ken, Kyle)
Take Me to the Bridge
(André and Company)
Liner Notes
(Kevin, Akron, Juson, Britton, Adam)
Middle Spaces
(Adam, Kyle, Company)

Click below for BWW’s recap of the night.

BWW Reviews: Energetic THE FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE CD RELEASE CONCERT is Filled with Soul and Heart

Kevin Mambo, Akron Watson, Britton Smith and Juson Williams. Photo by Lia Chang

Kevin Mambo, Akron Watson, Britton Smith and Juson Williams. Photo by Lia Chang

THE FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE, a co-production with Dallas Theater Center, is the extraordinary coming-of-age story about 1970s Brooklyn and beyond – of black and white, soul and rap, block parties and blackouts, friendship and betrayal, comic books and 45s. And the story of what would happen if two teenagers obsessed with superheroes believed that maybe, just maybe, they could fly.

The complete cast of THE FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE featured Ken Barnett (Abraham Ebdus); Kyle Beltran (Mingus); Adam Chanler-Berat (Dylan); André De Shields (Senior); Carla Duren (Marilla); Stephane Duret (Swing); Rebecca Naomi Jones (Lala, Abby); Jahi Kearse (Raf, Henry, Desmond, Jared); Kevin Mambo (Junior); Malaiyka Reid (Swing); David Rossmer (Arthur); Conor Ryan (Radio Guy, Mike, Gabe); Kristen Sieh (Rachel Ebdus); Britton Smith (Subtle Distinction); Brian Tyree Henry (Robert); Akron Watson (Subtle Distinction); Alison Whitehurst (Skater Girl, Liza); and Juson Williams (Subtle Distinction).

The new musical featured scenic design by Eugene Lee; costume design by Jessica Pabst; lighting design by Tyler Micoleau; sound design by Robert Kaplowitz; projection design by Jeff Sugg; hair and wig design by Leah Loukas; and choreography by Camille A. Brown. Kimberly Grigsby serves as Musical Director.

André De Shields, Kevin Mambo, Akron Watson, Kimberly Grigsby, Britton Smith, Juson Williams. Photo by Lia Chang

André De Shields, Kevin Mambo, Akron Watson, Kimberly Grigsby, Britton Smith, Juson Williams. Photo by Lia Chang

The Public Theater gratefully acknowledges the support of Tom Hulce and Ira Pittelman for this production. THE FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE is supported in part by the National Fund for New Musicals, a program of National Alliance for Musical Theatre, with funding from Stacey Mindich Productions – www.namt.org.

Below is Ghostlight’s advance preview track from the CD, “The One I Remember”, featuring the full cast.

The Fortress of Solitude CD Reviews:
BWW CD Reviews: Ghostlight Records’ THE FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE (Original Cast Recording) is Accessible and Artful

Other articles about André De Shields:
Actor André De Shields on His Self-Made Journey 
Production Photos: André De Shields, Bowman Wright, E. Faye Butler, KenYatta Rogers, Jessica Frances Dukes and Michael Anthony Williams in Arena Stage’s King Hedley II through March 8
tcgcircle.org THE GRAND ILLUSION by ANDRÉ DE SHIELDS in FOX FELLOWSHIPS
wtop.com: André Robin De Shields , Original ‘Wiz’ hits Arena Stage for August Wilson play ‘King Hedley II’
BWW Interviews: One Legend Tackles Another in Arena Stage’s King Hedley II
THE WIZ Turns 40- Photos from Original Broadway Production and BC/EFA Gypsy of The Year Celebration Featuring André De Shields, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Ken Page, Charl Brown, Carly Hughes, Christina Sajous, Alton Fitzgerald White, Lillias White and More
Photos: André De Shields, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Ken Page, Charl Brown, Carly Hughes, Alton Fitzgerald White, Lillias White in 40th Anniversary of The WIZ Tribute at BC/EFA’s GYPSY OF THE YEAR; Competition Breaks Records With Over $5 Million as Hugh Jackman’s THE RIVER Brings in Top Donation
The Fortress of Solitude, starring Adam Chanler-Berat, André De Shields, Kyle Beltran, Kevin Mambo, Rebecca Naomi Jones ends extended run 11/16; Ghostlight to Record Cast Album 
Nov. 17: Chapman Roberts, Loretta Abbott, André De Shields, David Greer, Norm Lewis, Cherine Anderson, Lawrence Evans, Colby Christina & Nicholas A. Jenkins to Receive Special AUDELCO Awards
Photos: André De Shields, Adam Chanler-Berat, Jose Llana, Kevin Mambo, Rebecca Naomi Jones, Kyle Beltran, Kim Brockington and More at The Fortress of Solitude 
The Fortress of Solitude starring André De Shields, Adam Chanler-Berat, Kevin Mambo, Rebecca Naomi Jones, Kyle Beltran & More at The Public
Mar. 7-Apr. 6: André De Shields, Adam Chanler-Berat, Kyle Beltran, Kevin Mambo and More Set for DTC’s World Premiere Musical The Fortress of Solitude, A Co-Production with The Public Theater 
Two-time Tony Nominee and Emmy Winner André De Shields Performs FREDERICK DOUGLASS: Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory and Speaks on The Wisdome of The Ancient Art of Storytelling at AFP 2014: Change Through Stories, Sept. 8-9, 2014
Dinner with André De Shields at Chez Josephine
Photos & Video: The Wiz’s André De Shields Sang “So You Wanted to Meet the Wizard” in The Black Stars of The Great White Way Broadway Reunion: Live The Dream at Carnegie Hall
Conversations with the Divine with Owais Ahmed, Baize Buzan, Kathryn Cesarz, Kamal Hans, Brian Grey, Donica Lynn, Patrese McClain and Miranda Zola at Chicago’s Victory Gardens Theater
Photos: André De Shields, Michael Shannon, Rajiv Joseph, Christine Sherrill, Doug Peck, Alexis J. Rogers, Karen Ziemba and More Celebrate 2013 Jeff Equity Awards
Click here for more articles on André De Shields.

André De Shields, Lia Chang and Kevin Mambo. Photo by Jack Bashkow

André De Shields, Lia Chang and Kevin Mambo. Photo by Jack Bashkow

Lia Chang is an actor, a performance and fine art botanical photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon and Taxman. She has guest starred on “One Life to Live,” “As the World Turns,” and “New York Undercover.” Lia starred as Carole Barbara in Lorey Hayes’ Power Play at the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., with Pauletta Pearson Washington and Roscoe Orman. She is profiled in Jade Magazine.

Other Articles by Lia Chang:
Thom Sesma, Emily Padgett, J. Elaine Marcos and Thai Superstar Bie Sukrit lead the cast of the world premiere of WATERFALL at The Pasadena Playhouse, May 29 – June 28 and Seattle’s 5th Avenue Theatre, October 1-25
David Henry Hwang, Laura Poitras, Amitav Ghosh, Deeyah Khan, Bill Rauch, Robert Battle, Carrie Mae Weems named among 13 Ford Foundation “Art of Change” Fellows
Photos: Traveling through the mouth of the Dragon with BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA’s James Hong, Peter Kwong, Lia Chang, Gerald Okamura, George Cheung, Al Leong, Jeff Imada, James Lew, Gary Goldman, Eric Lee, Joycelyne Lew
Photo: The Public Theater Presents Tony Award-winner Lemon Andersen’s TOAST starring Tony Nominees Keith David and John Earl Jelks, Hill Harper and more, April 21 – May 10 
A Sumptuous View of Ken Watanabe, Kelli O’Hara, Ruthie Ann Miles, Ashley Park, Conrad Ricamora, Jon Viktor Corpuz, Paul Nakauchi and More in Lincoln Center Theater’s Revival of The King and I
Joe Mantegna receives Lifetime Achievement Award for Film and Television from The Riverside International Film Festival
Hamilton tops Lucille Lortel Award Nominations along with Into the Woods, Between Riverside and Crazy, The Invisible Hand, The Nether and The Fortress of Solitude
The Women in the Arts & Media Coalition, Inc.: 2015 Collaboration Award recognizing Women Working with Women Open Call
Sinatra: An American Icon Exhibit on View through September 4 at The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts
“Matthew Weiner’s Mad Men” on view at Museum of the Moving Image through June 14; Required Viewing: Mad Men’s Movie Influences Film Series Screenings through April 26
Disney Developing Live-Action ‘Mulan’
Kenny Leon Helmed ‘The Wiz’ Set as NBC’s Next Live Musical to air on Dec. 3; Broadway Revival Slated for 2016-17
Chinese American: Exclusion/Inclusion Exhibition on view at New-York Historical Society through April 19; Photos of An Evening with Amy Tan
“Water to Paper, Paint to Sky: The Art of Tyrus Wong,” – Retrospective of Disney Legend at MOCA through September 13
Dining out at élan with Artist Arlan Huang; New Paintings on view at Trestle Gallery
Award Winning Actor Raul Aranas Talks THE BLACKLIST, NAAP’S OLIVER!, Songwriting and the Zen of Cycling
Tony Award Winners Chita Rivera and Roger Rees, Jason Danieley, Mary Beth Peil, David Garrison & More in Terrence McNally’s THE VISIT
Photos: David Byrne, Alex Timbers, Jaygee Macapugay, Celia Keenan-Bolger, Adam Guettel, Sarah Saltzberg and More Celebrate Jose Llana’s Lincoln Center American Songbook Debut
Signature Theatre Company’s Founding Artistic Director James Houghton To Step Down After 2015-16 25th Anniversary Season
Photos: Hudson Yang, Randall Park, Eddie Huang, Richard Lui, Lori Tan Chinn and More at #FreshOffTheBoat Viewing Party at The Circle NYC
LA Times Critic’s Choice FIGARO at A Noise Within; April 4, 5, 9, 10, 19, 30, May 1 and 10
Jon Tenney, Tessa Auberjonois, John de Lancie, Emily Ruth James and Kwana Martinez Set for World Premiere of Rajiv Joseph’s MR. WOLF at South Coast Repertory, April 12-May 3
Apr. 20: Garth Kravits joins Laura Benanti, Lena Hall, Scott Alan and more for BROADWAY SINGS TORI Concert to Benefit RAINN at (le) poisson rouge
East West Players’ Honors Paula Madison of Madison Media Management LLC and “Fresh Off The Boat” Executive Producers Nahnatchka Khan and Melvin Mar on April 20
Jerome Preston Bates, Michael Chenevert, Stephanie Berry, Terria Joseph, Kim Weston Moran, Tony Sallemi and Count Stovall set for World Premiere of Richard Wesley’s AUTUMN at Crossroads Theatre in New Brunswick, April 23 through May 3
April 23-30: The Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival (LAAPFF) Lineup includes EVERYTHING BEFORE US, KTOWN COWBOYS, Shonali Bose’s MARGARITA, WITH A STRAW, Jennifer Phang’s ADVANTAGEOUS, Arthur Dong’s FORBIDDEN CITY, U.S.A. and THE KILLING FIELDS OF DR. HAING S. NGOR
The 31st Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival (LAAPFF) presents Jennifer Phang’s ADVANTAGEOUS Featuring Jacqueline Kim, James Urbaniak, Freya Adams, Ken Jeong, Jennifer Ehle, Samantha Kim, Jeanne Sakata, Jennifer Ikeda and Matthew Kim at the Aratani Theatre on April 24
April 26: The 31st Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival (LAAPFF) Artist Spotlight- Arthur Dong’s FORBIDDEN CITY, U.S.A. and THE KILLING FIELDS OF DR. HAING S. NGOR
May 1: A/P/A Institute at NYU presents Remembering SlutForArt: Tseng Kwong Chi with Muna Tseng, Ping Chong, and Bill T. Jones
15th Annual New York Indian Film Festival (NYIFF) Lineup includes Shonali Bose’s MARGARITA WITH A STRAW & Aparna Sen’s SAARI RAAT; May 4-9
Photos: Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute Spring Exhibition, CHINA: THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS, May 7–August 16
Tony Award® Nominees Omar Metwally and Arian Moayed to star in Rajiv Joseph’s GUARDS AT THE TAJ, helmed by Amy Morton, at Atlantic Theater Company, May 20-June 28
World Premiere Musical HAMILTON Transfers to Broadway; Previews begin July 13
Photos: National Black Theatre Festival 2013; NBTF runs August 3-8, 2015 and will include Act III – A Celebration of Life Reception saluting the late theatre icon Garland Lee Thompson, Sr.
Star Trek’s George Takei & Broadway Bound ALLEGIANCE Create Indiegogo Campaign as Endowment for the Japanese American National Museum 
Tony Award winner Lea Salonga and Telly Leung Set to Co-star with George Takei in ALLEGIANCE; Previews Begin at the Longacre Theatre on October 6
Photos: John W. Kuo, Jessica Hagedorn, and Neal Katyal Receive AALDEF 2015 Justice in Action Awards
Suzan-Lori Parks’ FATHER COMES HOME FROM THE WARS, PARTS 1, 2 & 3 is the 2015 Winner of the Edward M. Kennedy Prize for Drama Inspired by American History 
THE GET DOWN, Baz Luhrmann’s New Drama Series Set in 1970s NYC That Gave Birth to Hip-Hop, Punk and Disco, to Premiere on Netflix in 2016
Variety.com: Ken Jeong to Star in ABC Medical Comedy Pilot ‘Dr. Ken’
Photos: Late Night at HERE LIES LOVE with Jaygee Macapugay, David Byrne, Jose Llana, Conrad Ricamora, Melody Butiu and More
Crafting a Career
Click here  for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2015 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at liachangpr@gmail.com

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