Monthly Archives: November 2017

Randy Lennox President Bell Media, Producer Bat Out of Hell

Episode 78, Nov. 8. 2017

Randy-Card

Randy Lennox speaks about producing Jim Steinman’s stage musical “Bat Out of Hell.”

Lennox is the President of Bell Media and the man who orchestrated a new multiproject partnership to develop theatrical productions with Michael Cohl’s Iconic Entertainment Studios (“Spamalot,” “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark,” “Rock of Ages: The Musical”). “Bat Out of Hell,” their first project to hit the stage, premiered in Manchester, England, in February 2017.

Bell Media is Canada’s leading content creation company with assets in television, radio, out-of-home advertising, and digital media.

Previously Lennox was the CEO of Universal Music Canada, the country’s largest record label, where he signed and championed internationally renowned Canadian artists.

Bat Outta Hell Podcast

Bat Out of Hell. Photo by Specular

Lennox’s interest in “Bat Out of Hell” goes back to the 1970s when he first saw Steinman’s anthemic rock songs performaed live at the El Macambo, in Toronto.

Cohl was the producer of that event and went on to produces live arena shows, global concert tours, theatrical performances, and touring exhibitions.

Bat Outta Hell podcst

Bat Out of Hell. Photo by Specular

“Bat Outta Hell” is unlike anything that has come before it and during the podcast Lennox addresses the financial risks, and rewards, associated with producing such an extravaganza. For example, it was in part due to the United Kingdom’s V.A.T. rebate, encouraging development of the cultural industries, that the show launched in Manchester.

We also discuss the creative process. As a titan of the entertainment industry, working with multiple Grammy and Juno award winners throughout his career, Lennox says that although he is fiscally savvy “the song always came first.”

The show features two new songs from Steinman and when Lennox saw the play for the first time he says that one of the new compositions “What Part of My Body Hurt the Most” was “the best song of the entire night.”

As well as aspirations of a Broadway run and touring companies, Lennox envisions a “television version in some form, either live or created.”

A television event would certainly bring the work to a vast audience but there is no doubt that “Bat Out of Hell” is a must-see, sensational theatrical experience. Steinman’s anthemic rock songs form the foundation of a thrilling show that transports audiences to another world courtesy director, and multimedia pioneer, Jay Scheib’s use of musical theatre and opera traditions layered with alluring, multi-camera video projections.

Show Notes:
For more details on the show visit: http://batoutofhellmusical.com/
For Toronto tickets visit: https://www.mirvish.com/shows/bat-out-of-hell
Follow Bat Outta Hell on Twitter: @BatTheMusical

Donna Feore, Director Choreographer

Episode 77, Nov. 11, 2017

Donna-Card


Donna Feore has choreographed performances at the Opéra National de Lyon France and the Canadian Opera Company but she’s best known for her work directing at the Stratford Festival, North America’s largest classical repertory theatre company.

Her work at the festival includes critically acclaimed productions, all with new choreography, of “Guys and Dolls,” “The Sound of Music,” and “Fiddler on the Roof,” just to name a few.

In 2016 Feore gained notoriety for directing the first ever professional production of “A Chorus Line” with all new, original choreography which Feore created.

I spoke with Feore about her work directing and choreographing the world premiere of “The Hockey Sweater,” a new musical that is based on the beloved short story by Roch Carrier.

The animated short film adaptation of Carrier’s story received the Best Animated Film award at the 1981 British Academy Film Awards.

We talk about the creative process behind adapting the story to a stage musical.

Feore, who is known for seeking out the best actors, also talks about her audition process and what she expects from actors.

Show Notes
Donna Feore on Twitter
The Segal Centre
The Stratford Festival