Shalom Life | April 20, 2014

Shalomlife.com Front and Centre at "Mary Poppins" Homecoming in LA!

Our very own Culture Editor Helen Hatzis was a special guest of the Sherman family at the Los Angeles premiere of the stage musical "Mary Poppins" this past Sunday.

By: Helen Hatzis

Published: November 16th, 2009 in Culture » Stage » Reviews

Shalomlife.com Front and Centre at "Mary Poppins" Homecoming in LA!

Last week, I received a cordial invite from the Sherman family to accompany them to the Los Angeles premiere of the stage musical “Mary Poppins.” If you may recall, Shalomlife.com was the first news source in Canada to report on “The Boys: The Sherman Brothers” story, a documentary about the legendary Sherman brothers who composed such memorable Disney tunes as ‘Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious,’ the scores to films like ‘Winnie the Pooh’ and ‘Jungle Book,’ and the Disney theme park song ‘It’s a Small World After All,’ to name only a very few.

Our interest in this film – which was directed by their sons Jeff and Gregg Sherman – helped bring the film to Toronto, the only other destination outside of the US to screen the film. “Your articles have been so kind to our dads and equally generous to my cousin's and my film, ‘The Boys: The Sherman Brothers’ Story,’ that we Shermans would like to cordially extend an invitation for you to be our guest at this once-in-a-lifetime event this Sunday evening, November 15th at 6:30 pm,” read the invite from Gregg Sherman.

After immediately accepting this gracious invite, I swiftly organized my trip to Los Angeles and grabbed an ‘umbrella’ to bring you this firsthand take of this memorable event.

The Sherman Brothers composed their Academy Award-winning score for “Mary Poppins” (which was shot a mere two miles from the Ahmanson Theater at the Walt Disney Studios), so this night was truly a homecoming for their greatest musical triumph. Additionally, the original Broadway cast were assembled for the performance and many cast and crew from the film, such as Dick Van Dyke, were in attendance.

“Mary Poppins” is one of Disney’s most successful films in the company’s history, that was released in 1964 and earned five Academy Awards, including Best Musical and Best Song, and remains one of Disney’s most enduring and best-loved films. Disney Theatrical Productions was formed in 1994 and opened with “The Lion King”and then“Beauty and the Beast.” “Mary Poppins” opened in London in December 2004. It is a co-production by Disney and Cameron Mackintosh, an award-winning producer with a career spanning over 40 years with hundreds of productions around the world under his belt, including “Cats,” “Les Miserables,” “The Phantom of the Opera” – the three longest-running musicals of all time – and “Miss Saigon,” to name a few.

New songs were added to the L.A. production by Anthony Drewe and George Stiles, and outstanding performances by Ashley Brown (Mary Poppins), Gavin Lee (Bert), Karl Kenzler (George Banks), and Megan Osterhaus (Winifred Banks), among others, marked their return from originating the roles in the London production. Director Richard Eyre, co-director and choreographer Bob Crowley, and scenic and costume designer Bob Crowley were also present for the homecoming.

In true Disney fashion, the cast and crew captured the magic necessary to bring this memorable film to life on stage. With new musical numbers added to a remarkable articulating stage, fabulous performances included Bert scaling the stage perimeter to mimic the film and Mary Poppins’decent out of thin air. The attentive audience clapped along to the catchy and much loved numbers such as ‘A Spoon Full of Sugar’ and ‘Feed the Birds.’

The performance concluded with roaring applause and a standing ovation, and finalized with a surprise visit from none other than Dick Van Dyke, who played Bert in the original film of “Mary Poppins.”

After the performance the Sherman family whisked us away to a post celebration and an impromptu performance by Richard Sherman.

The evening could simply be summed up in one word: supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!

James Franco and Idina Menzel Set For Easter Bonnet Competition James Franco and Idina Menzel Set For Easter Bonnet Competition TrendingSpielberg’s Latest Project: A Film About a Jew Who Becomes a Priest Spielberg’s Latest Project: A Film About a Jew Who Becomes a Priest TrendingJewish Top 10s: Bible Movies Jewish Top 10s: Bible Movies Trending
 

What You Missed in the News: April 13 - 20

April 20, 2014 | By Daniel Koren
What You Missed in the News: April 13 - 20

Our Top Stories this week include our Passover Book Series, an interview with Jeremy Diamond, the best Bible films, and more

Read More

James Franco’s Ex-Manager Sued for Embezzling Money From the Actor

April 18, 2014 | By Sarah Bauder
James Franco’s Ex-Manager Sued for Embezzling Money From the Actor

James Levy is being sued by his former partners at James Levy Management

Read More

James Franco and Idina Menzel Set For Easter Bonnet Competition

April 18, 2014 | By Ashley Baylen
James Franco and Idina Menzel Set For Easter Bonnet Competition

Franco and Menzel join Bryan Cranston, Fran Drescher and others at the event benefitting AIDS.

Read More

Spielberg’s Latest Project: A Film About a Jew Who Becomes a Priest

April 18, 2014 | By Ashley Baylen
Spielberg’s Latest Project: A Film About a Jew Who Becomes a Priest

The 'Schindler's List' director joins 'The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara'

Read More

Jewish Top 10s: Bible Movies

April 18, 2014 | By Zak Edwards
Jewish Top 10s: Bible Movies

In honor of Passover, we look at some of the best feature films that reinterpret stories from the Bible

Read More

Emotional Pain Isn't Just in Your Head

April 18, 2014 | By Abigail Klein Leichman
Emotional Pain Isn't Just in Your Head

A new Israeli-US study provides breakthrough in understanding the brain mechanisms that cause physical pain resulting from depression

Read More

A Children's Haggadah Made By Children [VIDEO]

April 18, 2014 | By Ynet News
A Children's Haggadah Made By Children [VIDEO]

Created by students of Rav Elio Toaff nursery school in Rome, 'cheerful Haggadah' is specially made for other children, not only Jewish

Read More

Italian Politician Mocks Primo Levi Holocaust Poem

April 18, 2014 | By Graham Sigurdson
Italian Politician Mocks Primo Levi Holocaust Poem

Beppe Grillo, head of an anti-establishment movement, released the parody on his blog that Jewish activists have labelled an 'obscenity'

Read More

More Headlines