DAVID BIANCULLI

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RENT LIVE
January 27, 2019  | By David Bianculli

Fox, 8:00 p.m. ET

 

SPECIAL PREMIERE: The live TV musical, which hit the heights early in the 1950s with NBC’s Peter Pan, was revived by the same network with NBC’s The Sound of Music Live! in 2013. Since then, other networks have picked up the challenge as well, and it’s all to the good. Tonight’s live Fox presentation of Jonathan Larson’s 1996 musical Rent will be directed by Alex Rudzinski, who’s already proven his skill at this by directing Grease: Live for Fox and Jesus Christ Superstar for NBC. This live version stars Vanessa Hudgens, who played Rizzo in Grease: Live in 2016, and Gabriella in Disney’s non-live High School Musical long before that. Co-stars include Valentina (seen as herself on RuPaul’s Drag Race: All Stars), Tinashe (seen as herself on Fox’s Empire), and Jordan Fisher and Mario. And room is being made in here, somehow, for members of the original Broadway cast, including Idina Menzel, Daphne Rubin Vega, Anthony Rapp, Jesse L. Martin, Wilson Jermaine Heredia, Adam Pascal, and Fredi Walker. No word, though, on whether this production will include Adele Dazeem.

 
 
 
 
 
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