After selling out shows across the country, “Newsies” the musical is carrying its banner to Columbus’ Ohio Theatre during its North American tour. Newsies is based on the 1992 film that drew its concept from historical events of the newsboys’ strike of 1899 in New York. The show chronicles the life of Jack Kelly (played by Dan DeLuca), a rebellious newsboy who leads a band of his colleagues to revolt against the injustice of his publishing company by going on strike.
“Newsies” was scheduled for a limited run on Broadway, but it extended its run and played more than 1,000 shows.
After a successful run, “Newsies” closed on Broadway this past August but lives on through its North American tour, arriving in Columbus on Tuesday and staying through Sunday.
One cast member in particular is ready to perform in Ohio and show his Buckeye pride.
“Columbus is one of the cities I am most excited for,” Newsies ensemble member and Columbus native Chaz Wolcott said. “I’ve already been telling the cast all the places we need to visit, like German Village, the Short North and especially Ohio State’s campus.”
Wolcott plays the role of newsboy Buttons in Newsies, among a cast that falls between the ages of 17 and 28. With this youthful crowd, Wolcott said he hopes audiences in cities such as Columbus will share that liveliness during the performance.
“Most of the cast has graduated or is taking time off from school for the show, so they understand that vibe,” Wolcott says. “It’s like you’re at a college party or a school event. Our production has that same high energy.”
The Tony Award-winning choreography and score including numbers like “Seize the Day,” “Santa Fe” and “Carrying the Banner.” On this specific tour, however, audiences can look forwards to a specially written number for the tour called “Letter from the Refuge” performed by character Crutchie, who is played by Zachary Sayle.
After six weeks of training in New York, the cast hit the road and the newsstands to continue making history with this musical. The tour recently set the record in Chicago for the highest-grossing week in Chicago theatre history after nine shows.
“All I can say is pride. I have so much pride for this show and this cast and I think the best part is that we all were fans before the show and this has only made that passion stronger,” Wolcott said.
He relates this feeling to current “Newsies” fans, affectionately referred to as “fansies” and how encouraging they are.
“It’s such a youthful show.” Wolcott says. “We’re rooting for kids to try and overcome adversity, to fight and believe in yourself. I think that resonates very well with this crowd.”
Tickets start at $38.85 with fees and can be purchased at the CAPA Ticket Center at 39 E. State St., all Ticketmaster outlets and online at www.ticketmaster.com. To purchase by phone, call (866) 870-2717.