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A Pop of Broadway: Ben Platt Releases Singles, Justin Timberlake Gets Serenaded at ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ & More

Category Broadway

|by Robert Peterpaul |

Where Broadway news meets pop culture

Welcome to our inaugural Broadway Buzz, a biweekly roundup of news surrounding Broadway – but make it pop culture. It couldn't be a better week to kick things off, as it truly ran the gamut in stories, from show openings and closings to one hysterical Justin Timberlake backstage encounter. Here's your fast pass to what's currently buzzing on Broadway.

Ben Platt, Ethan Slater and Katrina Lenk (Photos: Matthew Murphy; Joan Marcus; Matthew Murphy)

Ben Platt, Ethan Slater and Katrina Lenk (Photos: Matthew Murphy; Joan Marcus; Matthew Murphy)

“You Oughta Know” that Alanis Morissette is coming to Broadway
There's nothing ironic about this story. Last week began with confirmation that Alanis Morissette's musical Jagged Little Pill would shake up the Great White Way in Fall of 2019. Inspired by the songwriter's groundbreaking album of the same name, the plot confronts contemporary issues in an original story. It's already received acclaim, after completing a 10-week sold-out run at the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts last year.

Ben Platt drops two singles from his new album
Good news for fans who've been missing Ben Platt! The Dear Evan Hansen alum “waved back” through all of our speakers on Friday as he released two tracks from his debut album, Sing To Me Instead.

"Feeling very overwhelmed by all of your beautiful responses to ‘Bad Habit’ and ‘Ease My Mind,’" the Tony-winner wrote on social media after listeners weighed in. "Means the world to me that they are resonating with you. Makes me so excited for all the many songs and stories still to come." Mark your calendars, show geeks: Platt’s full album will be released on March 29. You can listen to both tracks below. 

After a Super Bowl cameo, SpongeBob to dazzle in Vegas
What happens in Bikini Bottom, stays in Bikini Bottom...unless, of course, Bikini Bottom is on tour. Everyone's favorite energetic kitchen appliance and his sea creature friends are indeed swimming across the nation, and their first stop has been revealed. SpongeBob SquarePants the Musical will play at the Smith Center for the Performing Arts in Vegas. The Center has a glittering lineup that also includes Mean Girls, The Band's Visit and Once On This Island.

SpongeBob made headlines twice this past week, as he also had a special cameo in the Super Bowl halftime show.

Alice in Wonderland gets the pop-rock treatment in Alice By Heart
For being over 154 years old, Alice looks pretty good. Lewis Carroll's beloved tale has been reincarnated yet again in Alice By Heart. Perhaps one of the most unique adaptations of the story to date, the new musical takes place in a World War II-era London. MCC Theatre's show reunites Tony and Grammy-winning creators of Spring Awakening, Steven Sater and Duncan Sheik, along with director and co-writer Jessie Nelson (Waitress). Starring Mia DiLena, Noah Galvin, Wesley Taylor and other Broadway notables, Alice By Heart began previews on Jan. 30.

Acclaimed The Band's Visit to end Broadway run
The Band's Visit will play its final performance on April 7, 2019. A musical adaptation of a 2007 Israeli film, it's become an unlikely hit with audiences and critics alike. After the curtain descends one last time, the show will have played 589 regular and 36 preview performances at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre. Don't worry, though – if you're a fan, you'll still have more chances to bask in the stunning score and heartfelt tale, as it has been announced that the production will go on tour.

Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel get serenaded at To Kill a Mockingbird
Stars love seeing Broadway shows. Aside from the fact that Broadway quenches their thirst for art and inspiration, celebrities no doubt revel in the fact that they can slip into the anonymity of a Broadway audience as the lights go down. For this reason, attending a Broadway show seems an obvious choice for internationally recognizable couple Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel. While in town for JT's makeup concert at Madison Square Garden, the power couple celebrated the latter's birthday at To Kill A Mockingbird. However, they didn't avoid the spotlight for long, as the tables turned backstage.

Things got interesting as the lovebirds popped by to congratulate the cast after their stirring performance. Justin told the excited group that the tickets were a birthday gift from his wife. According to Page Six, cast member Gideon Glick then joked: "Instead of us singing to you, why don't you sing to us?" However, the Grammy-winner didn't fall for that, so the cast serenaded him instead. Sounds like the duo got a bonus show!

For more of the best of Broadway, check out our list of the Top Shows in New York in February 2019.

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