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BROADWAY RECORDS FOUNDER VAN DEAN TO LAUNCH NEW LABEL: CENTER STAGE RECORDS (Broadway World)

Grammy Award and Tony Award-winning producer Van Dean is launching his new record label, Center Stage Records. The new label already has over two dozen albums scheduled for the coming year, including exciting titles from Broadway, Off-Broadway, London’s West End, concept recordings and major Broadway solo artist recordings.

In addition to its New York headquarters, Center Stage Records is deeply committed to the West End/London theatre and is establishing a London office which will be led by Executive Director, London producer/GM, Jamie Chapman Dixon.

Broadway Records’ Robbie Rozelle will also be joining Center Stage Records as its A&R Director and will design the artwork/packaging for its new releases. He will also continue to conceive and produce albums with key artists.

Most recently, Van Dean has been running Broadway Records under the ownership of Cutting Edge Group, which acquired the premier label from Dean in early 2020. The intention is for Center Stage to collaborate with Broadway Records on selected releases in the future and for Dean to consult for Broadway Records/Cutting Edge to aid in the transition. As part of Dean’s new venture, Center Stage will take over the management and distribution of nearly two thirds of the Broadway Records back-catalog with the remaining one third of titles staying with Broadway Records.

Under Cutting Edge, Broadway Records will continue as a leader in the musical theater album space, supporting its valuable retained catalog of titles, and releasing select new frontline cast albums including with its existing production partners such as The National Theatre in London.

For more info on Center Stage Records please visit: www.centerstagerecords.com

Van Dean (President and Founder) is a Tony Award and Grammy Award winning producer. He co-founded Broadway Records which released nearly 300 albums during his leadership. Van earned his Grammy Award for helping to produce the Broadway Records’ release of the 2015 Broadway revival of The Color Purple. His Grammy nominations were earned for his work on Matilda the Musical, My Fair Lady and Caroline, or Change. Van also executive produced well over 200 other albums including 9 that were Grammy Award nominated.

His theatrical production credits include The Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess (Tony Award), Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella (Tony Award nomination), Anastasia, Jagged Little Pill by Alanis Morissette and Diablo Cody (Tony Award nomination), How to Dance In Ohio, The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical, Matilda (Tony Award nomination), Evita (Tony Award nomination), Gore Vidal’s The Best Man (Tony Award nomination), Catch Me If You Can (Tony Award nomination), The Velocity of Autumn, Big Fish, Bonnie & Clyde, Chinglish, the Off-Broadway production of You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown (2016) and ROOMS a rock romance and the national tours of Anastasia, Matilda, Cinderella, The Lightning Thief and more. He was also a producer of Master Class with Tyne Daly and the 2022 and 2023 productions of Bonnie & Clyde in London’s West End. Upcoming: Death Note, Wild, Goodbye New York, SMASH, Figaro, Little Dancer, Song of Bernadette.

He co-produced Broadway For Orlando’s “What The World Needs Now Is Love” to raise funds for the GLBT Community Center of Central Florida. The charity single was featured on NBC’s “Maya and Marty” and at the Democratic National Convention in 2016. He co-conceived and co-Executive Produced the anti-bullying single “I Have A Voice” featuring 70 Broadway kids from Matilda, School of Rock and more and co-produced the new Broadway United music video of “We Are The World”. He also co-conceived and produced From Broadway With Love: A Benefit Concert For Sandy Hook featuring 100 Broadway stars, a 40 piece orchestra and 300+ children from Newtown and From Broadway With Love: A Benefit Concert for Parkland, USA at the BB&T Center Arena in Sunrise, FL and co-produced the Emmy Award winning From Broadway With Love: A Benefit Concert For Orlando. He is also a co-producer of the feature film documentary “Midsummer in Newtown” which premiered as a Spotlight selection at Tribeca Film Festival. Van has several major film and television musicals in pre-production.

Full article available via Broadway World here.


‘Whiplash In Concert’ To Launch World Tour In October; Composer Justin Hurwitz Conducts Jazz Big Band Alongside Film (Deadline)

Organizers of Whiplash in Concert said Thursday that the live concert series will have its world premiere October 28 at Boston’s Orpheum Theatre.

Whiplash centers on a promising young drummer (Miles Teller) who enrolls at a music conservatory where he encounters a cut-throat instructor (Simmons), with their intense relationship punctuated by Hurwitz’s diverse score and soundtrack.

In the concert, the film’s Oscar-winning composer Justin Hurwitz will conduct an 18-piece jazz big band ensemble that will play Hurwitz’s score live accompanying the 2014 Damien Chazelle film.

The concert series is a co-production between Cutting Edge Group and Hurwitz Concerts in association with Bold Films, the latter the film’s producer. After Boston, the concert will play several dates including in Toronto on October 30, with a festival premiere in Seoul scheduled for November.

The pic was nominated for five Oscars including Best Picture and won three including for star JK Simmons. It was the first of several collaborations between Hurwitz and Chazelle; Hurwitz won two Oscars for the score and original song for Chazelle’s La La Land in 2017.

“It’s going to be a thrill and a high-wire act to perform all of the jazz big band and incredible drum solos in sync with the movie,” said Hurwitz. “Also, I just love this movie, have been very affected by the movie, and am excited for people to revisit Damien’s brilliant writing and directing on a big screen.”

The concert series is a co-production between Cutting Edge Group and Hurwitz Concerts in association with Bold Films, the latter the film’s producer. After Boston, the concert will play several dates including in Toronto on October 30, with a festival premiere in Seoul scheduled for November.

Full article available here.


The National Theatre and Cutting Edge Media Music Form Exclusive Partnership (Broadway World)

The National Theatre and Cutting Edge Media Music have formed an exclusive partnership to develop and share the music in all the productions created by The National Theatre.

In early 2020 Cutting Edge acquired Broadway Records, founded by Van Dean and which is believed by many to be the leading independent soundtrack label servicing the Broadway community. Since inception Broadway records has released hundreds of cast albums including favourites like “Anastasia”, “Matilda”, “The Color Purple” and “A Sondheim Disco Fever Dream”.

Founded in the UK in the early 2000’s The Cutting Edge Group have become the leading independent music for media business in the US and UK. During the last decade, they have been involved with more than 1000 films, TV shows and games, working for and on behalf of the most important creative talent in the industry.

The move into live theatre completes the Cutting Edge offering and the partnership with The National Theatre, which produces work seen right across the world, is a cornerstone.

Cutting Edge will release the soundtracks to The National Theatre’s world-class theatrical productions through its musical theatre record label, Broadway Records, including the release of the original soundtrack to Hex, a new musical based on the classic fairy-tale Sleeping Beauty directed by Rufus Norris with music by Jim Fortune and The Lehman Trilogy, a National Theatre co-production with Neal Street Productions, directed by Sam Mendes, with music by Nick Powell which tells the story of a family and a company that changed the world. Further soundtracks to be released include All Kinds of Limbo, inspired by the National’s production of Small Island, an immersive performance employing virtual reality and holography that features music by Nubiya Brandon and Raffy Bushman; and Trouble in Mind, Alice Childress’s masterpiece from the 1950’s directed by Nancy Medina, again with music by Nubiya Brandon and Raffy Bushman.

“This partnership with Cutting Edge marks the start of an exciting new chapter for music at The National Theatre. This collaboration will allow us to release and publish music in a state-of-the-art way and give audiences worldwide access to the brilliant music of the many composers and musicians we work with. I’m delighted that Hex will be one of the first releases and I am looking forward to many more projects to come.” –Rufus Norris, Director of The National Theatre.

Cutting Edge will also provide The National Theatre with access to its premium music services and resources from its operations in New York, London and Los Angeles, and administer The National Theatre’s future music publishing rights.

“From the moment I watched “Albert Speer” at The National Theatre, when I was twelve years old, I have loved the theatre. Our Partnership with The National Theatre is a dream come true and working closely with Rufus, the NT’s Creative Director of Music Marc Tritschler and the team at The National Theatre is a true privilege for all of us at Cutting Edge.” –Tara Finegan, COO Cutting Edge.

“The partnership will allow The National Theatre to develop its music strategy and support its development of musical theatre as well as grow Cutting Edge’s presence in live entertainment. The National Theatre produces some of the world’s greatest plays and musicals, and it is a tremendous honour to be their record label partner. Their work consistently inspires us and we are thrilled about all of the exciting music projects in the works and yet to come.” –Van Dean, CEO Broadway records.

Full article available here.


NATIONAL THEATRE TO RELEASE MUSIC IN DEAL WITH BROADWAY RECORDS (Daily Telegraph)

Music from all National Theatre shows will be released under a new partnership with Cutting Edge Media Music.

Cutting Edge will release recordings to the National Theatre’s shows through its musical-theatre record label Broadway Records, which the company acquired in 2020.

This will include the original cast recording to Hex, which is directed by Rufus Norris with music by Jim Fortune, and The Lehman Trilogy, which was directed by Sam Mendes with music by Nick Powell.

Others to be released through the partnership will include All Kinds of Limbo with music by Nubiya Brandon and Raffy Bushman, which is an immersive performance inspired by the National’s production of Small Island, and Alice Childress’ Trouble in Mind, which also has music by Brandon and Bushman.

The National Theatre has joined forces with Broadway Records to release its soundtrack back catalogue to capitalise on the music streaming boom.

Cutting Edge Media Music operates as a a financier, publisher and record label, and has provided music services to theatre productions including Matilda, The Color Purple, Anastasia and My Fair Lady on Broadway, as well as feature films, television shows and video games.

Norris said: “This partnership with Cutting Edge marks the start of an exciting new chapter for music at the National Theatre.

“This collaboration will allow us to release and publish music in a state-of-the-art way and give audiences worldwide access to the brilliant music of the many composers and musicians we work with. I’m delighted that Hex will be one of the first releases and I am looking forward to many more projects to come.”

Cutting Edge will also provide the National Theatre with access to its music services and resources, and administer the organisation’s future music publishing rights.

Broadway Records chief executive Van Dean said: “The partnership will allow the National Theatre to develop its music strategy and support its development of musical theatre as well as grow Cutting Edge’s presence in live entertainment.

“The National Theatre produces some of the world’s greatest plays and musicals, and it is a tremendous honour to be its record label partner. Its work consistently inspires us and we are thrilled about all of the exciting music projects in the works and yet to come.”

Details from the Telegraph available here.


Album Review: CAROLINE, OR CHANGE (The New Broadway Cast Recording) is Truly Remarkable & Moving (Broadway World)

Christmas came early when Broadway Records, in collaboration with Roundabout Theatre Company, under their new Broadway Records label imprint Roundabout Records, released Caroline, or Change (The New Broadway Cast Recording) on digital platforms last week. The stunning two-disc recording captures every marvelous moment of the mostly sung-through score, gifting fans of Broadway a truly remarkable way to access this show no matter where they are.

I made my first return to sitting in the audience of a Broadway show by purchasing a Sunday matinee ticket to the revival. I had no idea what to expect, and I was blown away, moved to tears, and left Studio 54 feeling uplifted and forever changed.

Digital copies of Caroline, or Change (The New Broadway Cast Recording) are available for purchase now. Physical CDs are expected January 14, 2022 and can be pre-ordered from Broadway Records HERE.

Read full article here


Michael Flatley's Lord of the Dance Embarks on Huge Stadium Tour (Manchester Evening News)

Michael Flatley’s Lord of the Dance is coming to Manchester as part of a huge stadium tour celebrating 25 years of the show. Since its premiere, Lord of the Dance has been performed at 1,000 venues worldwide, but this time, it’s refreshing the classic elements of the show.

“I have the greatest team of dancers,” Flatley says.

He adds: “They are excited to be part of Lord of the Dance and every single one of them is trained to the highest standards of dance, athleticism and precision. I’m so proud of them.”

The show will premiere globally on St Patrick's Day in 2022 at the Eventim Apollo, London in aid of The Ireland Funds charity.

The show began as part of Michael Flatley’s dream to bring Irish dancing to a worldwide audience – starting with a performance at Eurovision in 1994.

It claims to transcend culture and language by captivating audiences with aerial moves, dancing and theatrical effects.

Flatley adds: “It’s hard to believe that we’re already celebrating 25 years of Lord of the Dance. I’m so proud of this show and what we’ve achieved.

“Over the years, we’ve had thousands of dancers from around the world be part of our story and I’m honoured to have been able to give them this opportunity to follow their passion.

“The incredible synergy between performers and audiences has been part of the magic for 25 years. We’re looking forward to this next tour as everyone deserves a positive and uplifting 2022!”

Tickets are currently on sale right now.

Read full article here