Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Welly Yang to present "Christmas Eve on Broadway" at his homecoming concerts

By Nancy T. Lu
Welly Yang – gifted actor, singer, writer and producer of Taiwanese parentage – always looks forward to Christmas as a time to head back to Taiwan for his special and heartwarming tryst with fans who are lovers of Broadway music. Yang found fame by singing the role of Thuy in "Miss Saigon" on Broadway in 1993.

“Christmas Eve on Broadway” at the National Concert Hall in Taipei at 7:30 p.m. on December 25 and 26 will see Yang in the musical company of Cady Huffman, music arranger and director David O, the Taipei Municipal Dun Hua Elementary School Music Class, and Taiwan JustMusic.

“Christmas in Taiwan tends to be fun time unlike in America, where the religious aspect tends to be more familiar,” said Yang in Taipei. “This explains why I have decided on a Broadway theme for this year’s program.”

Yang promised to let the concert hall ring out with laughter. Humor will be a key element in his entertainment program this Christmas. He will adlib when he sings about the “latte girl at Starbucks,” adding amusing Taiwanese lyrics here and there.

The father-to-be is excited about singing with “46 very cute children” from the Taipei Municipal Dun Hua Elementary School. Dina Morishita, his singing wife, was originally supposed to make the Taipei trip, too. Pregnancy has kept her from traveling though. The baby will be due in February next year.

Huffman was a winner of the Tony Award for Best Performance by a Featured Actress for her work in Mel Brooks’ “The Producers” on Broadway. She gave a glimpse of her performing talent by singing “When You Got It, Flaunt It” during a sneak preview of the show at the rehearsal room at the National Concert Hall in Taipei on Wednesday. Earlier, she revealed that she has been trying to learn two Taiwanese songs for the two concerts.

The very tall Huffman made her film debut in “Hero” which starred Dustin Hoffman, Geena Davis and Andy Garcia. She will appear with Ben Affleck in “The Company Men” next year.

“I Dreamed a Dream” from “Les Miserables,” “Con Te Partiro” (originally sung by Andrea Bocelli), “She” from “Notting Hill,” “Music of the Night” from “Phantom of the Opera,” “Don’t Cry for Me, Argentina” from “Evita,” “Your Song” from “Moulin Rouge,” “Luck Be a Lady Tonight” from “Guys and Dolls,” “Joy to the World” and “O Holy Night” will be among the songs in the program with composer and musician David O as music director.

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