Despite a threatening weather forecast, fans of Broadway musicals are waiting on the Boardwalk in Seaside Heights, NJ this drizzly Friday, August 5, 2022 evening for a live performance of Broadway Meets the Beach.
Broadway on the Beach is a series of free concerts featuring theatrical performers who entertain audiences at the Franklin Avenue stage in Seaside Heights. Tonight’s edition of the series stars Constantine Maroulis (Rock of Ages, Jekyll and Hyde), Lucia Giannetta (A Bronx Tale, Les Miserables), Jackie Nuzzo (Elf the Musical, Curious George), along with New Jersey singers Tyler Ricker and Theresa Carlomagno.
Producers Joseph Brunetti and Dee Pellegrino welcome the crowd and ask audience members to reveal where they’re from. The duo is surprised to learn that whereas some hail from Toms River, Brick, Point Pleasant, and Bayville, NJ, others are from Florida, and still others are here from as far away as England.
Season Four American Idol contestant Constantine Maroulis opens tonight’s show with a bang, getting the crowd clapping along with him to the opening sequence from his smash Broadway show, Rock of Ages. Audience members sing and dance along with Maroulis before he invites the crowd to play air guitar with him. He follows up by inviting one happy audience member to dance with him in front of the crowd as he croons to large applause.
Jackie Nuzzo’s smooth vocal is featured on “Easy to be Hard,” a number from the musical, Hair. Following enthusiastic applause, she invites producer Joseph Brunetti — co-writer of an upcoming NYC show entitled Vincent the Musical — to sing a duet with her. Their sweet voices blend in harmony on “Love Song” from the hit Broadway show, Pippin.
Brunetti and Pellegrino thank tonight’s sponsors before introducing this evening’s special guest, Cara Daniello, a teacher whose talent involves saying and spelling words backwards. When an audience member shouts out, “Oklahoma,” Daniello quickly recites, “Amohalko, A-M-O-H-A-L-K-O!” and when another suggests, “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious,” Daniello rapidly exclaims, “Suoicodilaipxecitsiligarfilacrepus, S-U-O-I-C-O-D-I-L-A-I-P-X-E-C-I-T-S-I-L-I-G-A-R-F-I-L-A-C-R-E-P-U-S!”
The crowd cheers and Tyler Ricker, a local crooner with a dream of keeping the Great American Songbook alive, takes the stage and transports the audience back to a simpler time with his stylized interpretation of “Luck Be A Lady Tonight” from Guys and Dolls.
Audience members, young and old, enjoy his classic performance and respond with animated applause. Ricker’s resonant voice engages the crowd on his second selection, Frank Sinatra’s “Witchcraft.” Several couples in the audience can even be seen dancing to the music despite the sound of rolling thunder in the distance.
Lucia Giannetta performs with feeling and passion on an upbeat version of the title song from Cabaret.
With her strong vocal and choreographed hand motions, the crowd shows how much they love her by bursting into cheers and applause.
Giannetta thanks the audience, declaring, “I love Seaside Heights! It’s so close to the city I love.” Here, she performs a dynamic rendition of “New York, New York,” giving a powerful performance which brings cheers from the crowd as the breeze picks up and unfurls the large American flag above the stage.
Maroulis returns to perform “All About You,” an original song from his 2020 album, Until I’m Wanted.
Crooning about the first love to break his heart, Maroulis impresses with his vocal range on this power ballad that inspires cheers and applause.
Opera singer Theresa Carlomagno performs “Green Finch and Linnet Bird” from the Stephen Sondheim musical, Sweeney Todd.
Carlomagno invites tenor Josh LeRose to join her in singing a duet on “The Prayer,” the distant thunder adding to the drama of the performance. LeRose follows up by performing the well known aria, “La donne è mobile,” from Verde’s Rigoletto.
The entire cast returns with Maroulis to perform the evening’s rousing finale from Rock of Ages, a lively rendition of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin’.” When Constantine exclaims, “Make some noise, New Jersey!” the audience stands and sings along on this feel-good ending to a feel good night in Seaside Heights where Broadway Meets the Beach.
To learn more about the next installment of Broadway Meets the Beach, which takes place on August 19 at 6:30 pm on the Seaside Heights Boardwalk’s Franklin Avenue Stage — in addition to many other engaging Seaside Heights events — please go to exit82.com.
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