In the concert world, April marks the beginnings of festival season, which lasts all summer long. Crossroads Guitar Festival is a great opportunity for music buffs to commemorate the fun summer of music ahead.
Meanwhile, in sports, the MLB seasons starts! April is also big for theater, and most of Broadway's plays will be opening this month — including (finally) Tom Hanks in his role as Mike McAlary.
While we may not be looking forward to the April showers, we're totally looking forward to the warmer weather, as well as these upcoming events in concerts, sports, and theater:
Dave Matthews Band: Though the band toured frequently in the '90s, DMB hasn't toured since 2011. Now they're back with a tour that begins April 6 in Alabama; just a few weeks later, on April 28, they'll headline the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.
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Beyonce: Beyonce last toured in 2009 following her I Am... album. Although the Mrs. Carter album has yet to be released, The Mrs. Carter Show World Tour kicks off April 24.
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Eric Clapton's Crossroads Guitar Festival: After three years, the Crossroads Festival is back! This two-day festival is scheduled for April 12 and April 13 in New York, NY.
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Other Concerts in April:
- Fleetwood Mac begins April 4.
- The Postal Service begins April 9.
- Rush begins April 23.
- John Mayer begins April 25.
- Jimmy Buffett begins April 27.
Guys. Have I mentioned Tom Hanks is going to be on Broadway? Well, he is, and we're five days (counting today) from when his show, Lucky Guy, officially opens on April 1.
People. Are. Freaking. Out.
The show has quickly jumped up to one of the top-selling theater shows through TicketNetwork; for the month of March, it was just outside the top 10, beating out already-established Broadway productions, like Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark and Mamma Mia!. Aside from that, Emmy-nominated actress Maura Tierney, who stars opposite Hanks in the show (bet you didn’t even know this wasn’t a one-man show, huh?), says the preview crowds have been quite enthusiastic.
Tierney told Broadway.com that people are so excited to see Tom Hanks on stage that they hardly have any expectations at all. It makes me think if the show was two hours of Tom Hanks reading a phone book out loud, people would argue that it was riveting and moving, and I can’t say I disagree. It’s Tom Hanks. (Hanks will actually play Mike McAlary, a columnist and reporter for the NY Daily News. A Daily News writer said the play is a "stickler for detail" and that Hanks was determined to accurately portray McAlary — not that it matters, because again, IT'S TOM HANKS.)
Even the stage door crowds have been interesting. When asked how she handles the stage door, Tierney said, "You mean the crazy people? The crazy crowds, I should say. I don’t have to handle it! I walk and go “It’s not Tom!” and they go, “Ohhh, okay.” Chris McDonald (Lucky Guy co-star) told me that there were people outside with bathroom lighting fixtures waiting for Tom to sign them."
So: are you excited about Tom Hanks making his Broadway debut? Will you be getting Lucky Guy tickets to check him out for yourself? Or maybe you'd prefer to get tickets just to say you took a breath of the same air as the legend. It's fine; this is a judgment-free zone.
Matilda, Cinderella, even How the Grinch Stole Christmas — these are all children’s books that have not only translated well onto the theater stage, but have also transcended their demographic. The productions were intended to be for children, sure, but you’d be hard-pressed to find an adult who wasn’t just as dazzled seeing the story come to life on stage.
While there are some children's-books-turned-stage-adaptations I'm excited about, including Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (in London), there are few that haven't quite made it to Broadway yet. Here are my top picks for children’s books I think would work well as a theater show.
Where the Wild Things Are
I loved "Where the Wild Things Are" by Maurice Sendak as a kid, although watching the film adaptation as an adult made me realize it was much darker than I remembered. Still, I think it would be pretty cool to see the big monsters on stage, as well as intricate set designs. I’d shy away from making it into a musical — it was already made into an opera back in the ‘80s — but a great orchestral accompaniment could make the production go a long way. It would be light enough for the kids to enjoy, especially adorable Max in his white bunny suit, while also providing enough to keep adults intrigued.
Whenever I head to NYC, I usually have grandiose plans to do a bunch of things all over the city. Museums! Local eateries! Central Park! Horse and carriage ride! Guess what happens when I get there?
I do two or three things out of a list a mile long.
It’s not that I’m not ambitious, it’s just that sometimes I have a hard time grasping just how far one part of Manhattan is from another. It looks so tiny on the map, you know? And I somehow also forget I’ll be walking everywhere.
So if you’re making a trip to see a Broadway show, you’ll probably want to make sure your other adventures are in the general vicinity of the theater district, unless you’re like The Flash and you can get from point A to point B in milliseconds. (We already created a food, theater, and accommodations guide to keep you from planning lunch all the way across the city!)
Here are a few fun, interesting attractions nearby.
Discovery Times Square: Located on 44th Street (right across from the Shubert Theatre, where Matilda is currently playing), Discovery Times Square is an exhibit-based museum. Right now, they offer a spy exhibit, which features "the secret world of espionage," and a Harry Potter exhibit, which pays homage to the eight films from the series. Fun!
If you loved Tina Fey’s "Mean Girls" movie as much as I did, then news that there is a musical probably sends you weeping happily at your work desk. No? Just me? Fine, but it is exciting!
At the SAG awards, Tina Fey said she and her husband, who did the music for "30 Rock," are working on creating one. (I originally wrote her husband DOES the music for the show, which is depressing, because the show is over now.) She said she thinks Paramount is on board, too.
That’s all I need to know. "Mean Girls" is one of my favorite movies to quote, and after the success of Legally Blonde the Musical and Bring It On the Musical, it would probably do well. (Although I feel like Amy Poehler’s character, Regina George’s "cool mom," will totally steal the show. Or maybe the very minor but nonetheless wonderful Glen Coco. You go, Glen Coco.)
Here are a few other teen films we might like to see on stage. Let us know if we missed any!
I mean, obviously. "Clueless" is up there on my list of favorite movies ever and I think it could be hilarious and campy on stage. They could probably even get the original cast of the movie to be onstage because they’re all freaks and haven’t aged a bit. (Fun fact: this film is based on Jane Austen’s novel, "Emma.")