Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Spotlight On...Jamibeth Margolis

Name: Jamibeth Margolis

Hometown: Ventnor, NJ

Education: Ithaca College

Favorite Credits: Warsaw (A New Musical) and Jekyll and Hyde as director and assisting director Jerry Zaks on The Caine Mutiny Court Martial on Broadway

Why theater?: I was in my school production of Oklahoma! in sixth grade and I never looked back.

Tell us about Eddie and the Palaceades: Eddie and The Palaceades opened for the Beatles then dropped like a rock back into obscurity. Twenty-five years later, the Palace Theater where they got their start is threatened with demolition. Eddie runs for mayor to save the theater, but his decision tears his family apart. Eddie and The Palaceades is an original musical about family and friendship, standing up against corruption, and the universal need for love and respect.

What inspired you to direct Eddie and the Palaceades?:
I met Roy O'Neil (writer) about a year ago and loved this show from the first time he mentioned it to me.  I am honored to be a part of it and to collaborate with Roy and this amazing cast and creative team on a piece that is so timely and universal.  I think all of us constantly examine our friendships, our families, our passions.  I know I do.  Roy takes these themes and puts them against a political backdrop to create a show that is both relevant and touching.

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: Theater that is dramatic, historical and epic.  I love theatrical adaptations of movies and novels.  I am inspired by the masterful staging in plays like WAR HORSE and the by the brilliant writing of Aaron Sorkin.

If you could work with anyone you've yet to work with, who would it be?: Harold Prince.  I wrote my college thesis paper on him and have revered him ever since.  Mr. Prince has enjoyed enduring success in the theater.  He is always willing to take risks and explore daring subject matters.  I believe that he has helped to shape musical theater as we know it for half a century.

What show have you recommended to your friends?:
I see a lot of wonderful theater, so it is hard to choose. I recently saw Once on Broadway for the first time and was captivated by the music, the story, the staging and the brilliant musicianship of the cast.  I also love SISTAS: The Musical Off Broadway.  I cast this show and I think it is an amazing 90 minutes in the theater!

Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?: Christina Ricci would play me in a movie called “No, My Name Is Not Marybeth: A story of Hope, Dreams, Theater and Adventures in Catholic School”

What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: Tea.  If you can't find me, I am probably at Teavana.

What’s the most played song on your iTunes?: “Seize the Day” From Newsies

If you weren’t working in theater, you would be _____?:
The manager of a NHL team.  I grew up watching ice hockey with my Dad.  I still watch every game I can.  It would be interesting to bring my theater management skills to the ice rink.

What’s up next?: Continuing to work on and develop Warsaw. Check out www.warsawthemusical.com and directing a brand new chamber opera this Fall!

For more on Eddie and the Palaceades, visit midtownfestival.org.

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