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Fan Reviews, Media Reviews, and comments from members of the Media, about Darren in Hedwig and the Angry Inch--SF and L.A. Tour

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Poppy

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# Repost alex_neshan 

LIFT UP YOUR HAAAAAAEEAAAAAEEAAANNDDS Effing Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Shit man….in every which way shape and form, so amazing. #hedwigandtheangryinch #hedwig #lenahall #darrencriss #liftupyourhands #hollywood #pantages http://ift.tt/2ff6x6P
via DarrenCrissArmy

Poppy

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From DarrenCrissArmy:

RomyRaves wrote:
Darren Criss SLAYS as Hedwig and the Angry Inch at Hollywood Pantages

November 7, 2016

I recently attended Opening Night of Hedwig and the Angry Inch at the Hollywood Pantages Theatre and it was nothing short of spectacular! The Los Angeles limited engagement of Hedwig (now thru November 27th) is starring Darren Criss that many of you may know from Glee. I’m delighted to tell you that Blaine Anderson was nowhere to be found in Criss’s transformative performance of Hedwig, a charismatic and emotionally scarred transgender rock star who has arrived for this one-night-only special performance to set the record straight about her life, her loves, and the botched operation that left her with an “angry inch.”

I was absolutely mesmerized by Criss’s performance of Hedwig; he completely morphed into to this flamboyant, funny, passionate angst ridden rocker, who you laugh at and cry with. I marveled at the stamina it took to portray this role with all the necessary physicality it takes to dance, sing, walk, jump and gyrate in platform heels. He was absolutely incredible and those abs, don’t even get me started . . .

[. . . ]

All I can say is Angelenos RUN! to see Darren Criss during his limited engagement at the Pantages before it’s too late!! You are in for an absolutely amazing night of theater. You will see Broadway caliber performances and be transported into an incredible glam rock world ala David Bowie with top notch talent, incredible staging, fun and provocative musical numbers, singing dancing, licking and some of the best musical theater to grace an LA stage in long time.
via DarrenCrissArmy

Poppy

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Some tweets:


Note:   Lisa Schwartz is an actor and youtube personality.





Note:  Dan Carrillo Levy is a film director and producer, and founded Moxie 88, Boutique Film Studio.








Poppy

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From DarrenCrissArmy:



This fan's message had a special resonance with me, given the election results of my country.

# Repost _dinorah_


In the midst of all the uncertainty at least I got to meet one of my favorite humans today. Not only is he so talented but most importantly an amazing caring human being. We need more people like you in this world #darrencriss!  https://www.instagram.com/p/BMovICghVnl/
via DarrenCrissArmy







# Repost makenakane

After a day of hatred and bigotry, I am very glad that I can go see art that is so well crafted fighting (and ad libbing) for what they believe in. Thank you #darrencriss https://www.instagram.com/p/BMnpou2hTc0/
via DarrenCrissArmy








#Repost samthefilmman

Honestly #darrencriss is an awesome performer and a very nice guy. Thanks for hug man. Seriously last meant more than words can say! #hedwigandtheangryinch #theatre #musical #loveeachother https://www.instagram.com/p/BMoxWsgBouJ/
via DarrenCrissArmy



Last edited by Poppy on Mon Jan 16, 2017 4:14 pm; edited 1 time in total

Poppy

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Nice gif set capturing what Lena Hall said about Darren during the livestream (Facebook):

 

 

janel-moloney:

Lena: You have this really cool voice, don’t be afraid of it.
Darren: Thanks! Everybody else, be very afraid.

November 10 2016   (Source)
via dailydarrennews

(From this video:  Facebook Livestream)








Fan review:

i-and-my-annabel-lee wrote:
My Hedwig
November 10, 2016

He did it again. It doesn’t matter how high my expectations are with Darren, he always manages to exceed them, somehow. I packed my bag and left my own wicked little town for a week and went to sunny LA to see Hedwig, again. I thought he couldn’t be better than in New York. Boy, I was wrong. Maybe it’s because I’m more used to listening to his voice in videos or crackling audio recordings than in real life, but every time I have the rare chance to bask in the richness and beauty of his voice, the reasons why I’ve ever loved this man become clear again in my head.
His voice is loud, bold, deep, rough and sweet at the same time. It’s soft and rich like velvet and it melts like pure honey. And the best part is that his voice is just what titillates your hearing. Everything is brought to completion by how he moves and the expressions his face is able to make. He moves and bends his body as he pleases and it’s strong and fragile, compact and feminine. He has muscles and, trust me, you can see each and every single one of them, and you can see his strenght in all his jumps and push-ups and all those crazy acrobatics he does all round the stage. But he curves his body, he bends his leg, he sits on a lonely stall or a damaged car and he’s suddenly a mean but fragile and beaten up woman who’s been through more shit than anyone could bear, or a little boy molested by his father, or a young kid who still doesn’t know what he wants from life and who’s too afraid to love. He spins his strong figure and he’s a graceful ballerina dancing to a rock ‘n’ roll song. His eyes are pools of deep emotion and he can say more with a raised eyebrow than I could ever say to you with a million words. You can’t take your eyes off of him, Hedwig, Tommy, Luther and all the other characters he has within his own body for the whole 90 minutes. You can see his eyes even from the back of the teather and, surrounded by muddy maybelline tears, smudges eyeshadow and fake lashes, they find you, somehow. Each and every one of you at the same time. The energy you can literally see radiating from him is captivating and with his moves and his voice he takes you by the hand and he leads you through so many characters and so many stories but you don’t get lost. He doesn’t let you. He tells Hedwig’s story so clearly and with so much honesty that you can’t escape it. The funny parts, the sad parts, the dark parts. Parts that you would never want to hear, things that you would never want to see happening to someone. You go through them all with him and you get to the end of the last note and you realize that you didn’t just learn about Hedwig’s story, or Hansel’s, or Tommy’s. No, you also learned a little bit about yourself. In these 90 minutes of silly jokes, sexual innuendos and silent tears, you actually found a little piece of knowledge that you can add to your own story. And this happens every time you see the show. From the moment he puts his golden heels on the car to the one his bare feet lead him out of the stage.

My parents saw the show for the very first time. I want to include this in my little recap for a reason. They have never seen Darren doing anything live, they’ve never seen Hedwig, live or on screen, and they don’t speak English. They loved it. They couldn’t understand how this cute, sweet, little guy they saw talking with fans at stage door could become this stage monster they saw in front of them. My father told me: “I knew he had talent, from a couple of videos I saw from you, but I could have never imagined how much of an explosion of talent and energy he actually is”. His techincal precision, his vocals and his moves hit them, even if they couldn’t understand one single joke. They didn’t understand the innuendoes, the jokes or the rough and poignant dialogues (or monologues I should say) and yes, one could say they missed a lot, but they felt it. They felt Hedwig’s pain and feelings and Darren made them go through the dark turns and noice of Hedwig’s story just thanks to his own passion and talent. Nothing else. And I do think this is all kinds of amazing and remarkable.

The show lack the intimacy of the New York’s show, inevitable since you have almost 3000 people instead of 1000 and the teather is clearly huge, but the energy and the roaring laughs, claps and cheering make up for it. I’ll never forget how proud I felt. Seeing Darren coming on stage taking is bow, the spotlights lighting up again on the audience and 3000 people standing up for him is one hell of a view. He has the power to make 3000 people loudly cheer for him and to have them silently, completely and unwillingly - because he doesn’t give you room for any choice - eating out from the palm of his hand. It doesn’t matter if it’s touching a wig, picking at those fishnets, holding a mic or sending a kiss.

-i-and-my-annabel-lee



Last edited by Poppy on Mon Jan 16, 2017 4:15 pm; edited 1 time in total

Poppy

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Looking at some tweets about the show, it struck me how seeing Hedwig and the Angry Inch has helped folks in terms of finding hope and some light, which is so important because of the uncertainty and anxiety felt by so many subsequent to the election.   This show is more inspirational than ever, given what has just happened in the U.S..   I'm glad Darren, through his performance and through his kind words at stage door, has helped lift the spirit of others. 

















More tweets:









Last edited by Poppy on Sat Nov 12, 2016 1:03 am; edited 2 times in total

Poppy

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# Repost bookwhimsy 

Theatre night with #tvpam seeing Hedwig and the Angry Inch starring #DarrenCriss. Incredible performances and well timed political jokes! My favorite lines from a song in the show: “You think that luck has left you there/ But maybe there’s nothing up in the sky but air.” #theatre #hedwigtour http://ift.tt/2fr9EIM
via DarrenCrissArmy

Poppy

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Some more tweets (once again, showing the power of this show to uplift and give hope):












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Another review:

4YourExcitement wrote:
Darren Criss Puts The Wig Back On His Head For Hedwig And The Angry Inch

November 11, 2016.

By Clare Sidoti

Through fate or some divine intervention, some shows seem to arrive at just the right time. Times when audiences need to experience something meaningful, to escape or help them deal with or explain what is going on in the real world. With all the fear, confusion, uncertainty and hate in the world, Hedwig and the Angry Inch (directed by Michael Mayer and now showing at Los Angeles’ Pantages Theatre) has begun its US tour at such a crucial time for this story to be told. Providing its audience with a story about love, being true to yourself and following your dreams, you are able to have a cathartic and unifying experience all set to a kick ass rock soundtrack and extravaganza.

[. . . ]

What we see is a tragic journey of self destruction/discovery that strips away Hedwig’s façade, leaving audiences with plenty to ponder as they depart the theatre.

Criss is the heart and soul of the show; taking us to unbelievable heights with Hedwig’s passion, defiance, comedic way of dealing with her life and rapport with the audience, and then bringing us back down to earth with her reflection, pain, and ultimate sacrifice. While I loved his performance in the Broadway production, this Hedwig has more gravitas and less manic energy. There’s a greater sense of world-weariness to her that goes deeper this time around. This is certainly not a criticism of either performance, but an interesting new take on her. This is never more evident than in “Hedwig’s Lament,” “Midnight Radio” and then his Tommy Gnosis performance of “Wicked Little Town (Reprise)”. No matter how many times I see this show, those last two songs never fail to bring me to tears. The simplicity and stillness of Criss’ performance here after 80 minutes or so of high energy, in your face pure Rock Goddess is breathtaking and Hedwig’s agony just oozes from Criss throughout the stage touching us all. There is a real sense of uneasiness at what Hedwig has been reduced to and an eager anticipation for what is going to happen to her next.

The format for the show makes it the perfect vehicle for Criss, playing to his numerous strengths. The rock concert performance of the songs allows him to work the audience and highlights his youthful energy. However, it’s the cabaret style chit chat with the audience in between numbers where he truly comes alive. Feisty (and boy was she on fire the night after the election) and engaging, Criss’ Hedwig flirts her way into the audience’s heart (some more up close and personally than others). Criss’ quick wit, comedic timing and willingness to just go with whatever is thrown at him from the audience is as much a joy to watch as it is evidently to play. There is no doubt that you are in her domain and Criss certainly takes advantage of that to full effect.

As it was the night following the election, there was no doubt that through the relaxed ad-lib nature of the performance, Hedwig would offer her own special brand of commentary on what has unfolded. Filled with quips such as reminding people to set their clocks back 60 years, that the stage tastes like Mike Pence, numerous “Nasty Woman” references and about the new President-elect (the Grindr and hair ones were particularly good), the show easily touches on today’s concerns. Though one of the more chilling segments is Hedwig’s taunts to Yitzhak and the Angry Inch about immigration coming to get them – as Hedwig remarked, this takes on a whole new meaning now.

Poppy

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Some tweets:



Note:  Yeardley Smith is an actor (she is well-known for playing the voice of Lisa Simpson.  I also knew her from a TV show called Herman's Head).













This person said she has seen every version of this show (on Broadway?). 

Poppy

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From dailydarrennews:



Melissa Claire Egan is currently starring in CBS’s The Young and the Restless










lucy8675309:
Look who’s in the paper  (Orange County register)
Orange County Register



The article is almost word-for-word the same as this article in the Los Angeles Daily News that appeared on November 9.  It's the same writer, Dany Margolies.



Last edited by Poppy on Mon Jan 16, 2017 4:16 pm; edited 1 time in total

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# Repost @shreikingviolette

What an amazing night!!! So honored to have not only witnessed my favorite actor perform but to meet him! Darren Criss has managed to inspire me and keep me going with his amazing musicianship, acting, stage presence, and everything!!! I’m feeling seriously inspired, thanks so much Darren!!! #darrencriss #hedwigandtheangryinch http://ift.tt/2euoT79
DarrenCrissArmy










beehivebuzzing:
11/12

I was incredibly blessed to have the honor of experiencing the genius that is Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Having been a fan of the production/movie I’m so very happy I got to finally see it in the flesh.

And also getting to finally meet Darren Criss.

He was super nice and incredible; but we already knew that.

I got him to sign both of my playbills (Hedwig/Hurt Locker), my ticket stub, and a sugar daddy I happened to buy at The Grove earlier that day, he loved it.
I asked him if he had any lines or songs that he loves about Hedwig and/or the show. He said he loves all the stupid jokes and told us his favorite (which is one where he can only use with Rebecca)

This being the first time meeting him, after so long of wanting to and wishing and missed opportunity, it finally happened and he did not disappoint. He is a true talent and I genuinely love and admire his work. He’s good people
DarrenCrissArmy



Last edited by Poppy on Mon Jan 16, 2017 4:17 pm; edited 1 time in total

Poppy

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Some tweets:

This person is a big Hedwig fan.  She saw NPH, Michael C. Hall and John.  She adores John and also was fond of Michael's portrayal of Hedwig.




She also saw HATAI in SF.  She saw all 4 of Lena's show where she played Hedwig and she saw 10 of Darren's shows in SF.


She also tweeted this:

Poppy

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More tweets:



Note Dana Chapman is an actor.




















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From dailydarrennews:

Great review by BroadwayWorld:

BroadwayWorld wrote:
BWW Review: Darren Criss Slays in Pantages Stop of HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH Tour



November 15, 2016.
By Michael L. Quintos

It's really not much of a shock to realize right away that Darren Criss is a bona fide triple-threat superstar.

The handsome and talented star of stage and screen---who first caught my attention playing the title role in the unofficial Harry Potter musical that became an online viral hit, and who then later rose to stratospheric fame as gifted gay teen Blaine in the musical TV series Glee---exudes plenty of charm and charisma so effortlessly that it is no wonder that even while disguised as an East German genderqueer lead singer of a glam rock band, his winning personality still shines through every time.

In a theatrical touchdown for the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood, Criss has agreed to reprise the notable title role he stepped into last year on Broadway: as Hedwig in the just-launched national tour of the rousing 2014 Tony Award-winning reboot of the glam rock musical HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH, which began last month in San Francisco and continues its Los Angeles-area performances through November 27 (Euan Morton assumes the role for the rest of the tour starting November 29 in San Diego). Featuring solid direction from Michael Mayer and dynamic new musical staging from choreographer Spencer Liff, the searingly electric, engagingly hilarious show, at its core, celebrates the triumph of living life as authentic and as tenaciously as possible, no matter the constant obstacles. It's certainly a wonderful message to remind everyone in such uneasy times of late.

Explosive, sassy, and utterly mesmerizing, Criss---as evidenced in his recent Opening Night performance in L.A.---easily elevates the already exhilarating production tenfold, as he sings (well, rocks) his way to narrate his out-and-proud character's story up to this very point.


. . .  For 90 seemingly non-stop, intermission-less minutes, Criss---trading in his usual buttery pop-tinged vocal sytlings for powerful rock-infused ferocity---commands attention with every second and handily gets it. Following in the footsteps of prior Hedwigs Neil Patrick Harris, Andrew Rannells, Michael C. Hall, and (again) originator John Cameron Mitchell, Criss took on the role as a replacement (albeit a very marquee-baiting one), yet proves how outstanding he is in interpreting Hedwig, disappearing into the character with his own cadence and emotional tone.

Even better, he is clearly having a ball in the very showy role, which finds him orating Hedwig's truth and, at times, even interacting directly with the audience (some lucky patrons even get really up-close) while in a mini-skirt, wig, and drag-lite makeup. The show is basically one long, drawn-out monologue with inserted rock songs---a one-man, er, I mean, one-woman cabaret show on hormones, steroids, and glitter. And Criss slays in the show.

[ . . . ]

In all honesty, for me, the stage musical is part rock concert, part stand-up comedy set, part intense psychiatric office visit... and all of it is absolutely enthralling. Trask's beautifully crafted songs compliment the vibe. Hedwig's story, her witty one-liners (and Criss' perfectly delivered in-the-moment ad libs), and, finally, seeing her ultimate personal acceptance (and transferring part of that empowerment to Yitzhak) are, together, so wholly different from anything else out there in musical theater land.

[. . . ]

But make no mistake, Criss' return to the role is a big frikkin deal. If you get the chance, go see him (and, of course, the incredible Ms. Hall) in one of the most unique, enjoyably atypical stage musical experiences you will ever see.






Another review:

The Huffington Post wrote:
Hedwig Still Angry, Still Brilliant Extended thru 27th at Pantages

November 14, 2016.  By Charles Karel Bouley

The world is not new to being in shock on November 9th. In 2016, the worldwide shock was that Donald Trump could garner over 59 million votes and even though getting less votes than Hillary Clinton, seal the Electoral College and become President Elect. In 1989 the world sat with mouths open as one symbol of communism, oppression, of dictators fell, the Berlin Wall. Yes, the irony of Trump claiming victory on the day the Berlin Wall fell is not lost on me, nor would it be on Hedwig.

[. . . ]

I almost didn’t want to see it. My history with Hedwig is long and meaningful; and the play holds a very dear place in my heart. In 1999 I was the soundtrack editor at Billboard Magazine, doing a weekly column on movie, TV, stage and all sorts of soundtracks. I got CDs daily to review. One day one came in without much hoopla. It was from a play that was yet to open in New York, written by John Cameron Mitchell and Stephen Trask. Neither were big names in music or theatre at the time. When I put it on and the blaring Rock began, I instinctively tuned out. I’m not a big rock fan. Especially Punk Rock. But my late husband Andrew Howard loved alternative music and insisted we listen. And listen. And listen. And soon I was singing along. Soon we were having a time with the songs, the lyrics about this poor person who had become a “gender of one.” The songs became part of my life.

Late-early-to-mid-1998-1999 Andrew and I had big jobs in afternoon radio at KFI AM 640 Los Angeles and were making OK money. We decided to go to NYC and see the play. And see it we did, in the basement of the hotel where the Titanic survivors were taken. John Cameron Mitchell and Stephen Trask were in the play and it was beyond sublime. It spoke to anyone that had ever been on the outside; anyone that had ever experienced great love and loss; it spoke of identity and how we tie it to various things, like our gender. It was brash and brazen for the era and the hard-edged music matched the raw emotion and sentiment of the play. The theme of duality, of being one once we’ve found THE one, sitting next to my husband, my on and off air partner, my life, being history-making openly gay people in traditionally straight media...the play spoke to our cores.

We would see it again with Michael Cerveris, . . .

Hedwig was a small play with a huge voice, a large heart and a soul, the souls of John Cameron Mitchell and Stephen Trask. When it went big time in 2014 on Broadway, I had my reservations. Was it meant to be a slick production with major stars? Was Hedwig the play, to become like Tommy Gnosis, the character, the slick, produced, soulless sellout that leaves behind the gritty, real, earthy true Hedwig?

Yes, and no.

I went with my friend Daniel Charleston, 29, who had not seen the play. He loved it.   The Pantages knows how to throw a red, or in this case, pink carpet . . .  How funny, I thought, during the original run off-Broadway bodies of dead junkies were taken out around those in line. Now, there’s Hollywood elite lined up.

Darren Criss, of Glee fame, is Hedwig this time out (he’s done it before). Again, how did I feel about a non-gay person playing Hedwig? Broadway had Neil Patrick-Harris, America’s favorite gay. But also Taye Diggs and Michael C. Hall; each, if the internet is correct, brilliant in their own way. Well seeing how Hedwig is indeed a gender of one, it means any one of any gender or sexuality should and could play Hedwig. In fact, the Tony-winning star Lena Hall, famous for playing Yitzhak in the play, often plays Hedwig. So I quickly got over that.

How would a one-man-glam-punk-rock-musical (because it basically is a one man(?) show) that could easily be seen at CBGB (if still open) play at one of the grandest theatres in the world to an audience of Glitteratti? Coco Peru was there, The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, heck, me!

Effortlessly. It appears Hedwig’s personna is so large it can fill any theatre and still make it seem like it’s all just for you, that you are, in fact, at a Sizzler or some diner watching this spectacle unfold.

[ . . . ]

The music is still as raw, emotional and shocking as it was in 1998 when it was written and auditioned at the local drag punk bar in NYC by Mitchell and Trask. And as Trump was claiming victory, the themes of the play rang even more true. In fact, between their last production of “Cabaret” and now this, the Pantages is bringing theatre so extraordinarily relevant to our times to the public. Add in the upcoming “Hamilton” and who says Broadway can’t spread social messages?

Criss, who has played Hedwig before, camps his way through the monologues just enough, because Hedwig’s biggest defense mechanisms are wit and tongue combined. Hedwig’s observations and commentaries are biting and often tragic and as he almost screams and demands his way to love and acceptance the audience gets a feel for the vast loneliness that can inhabit a soul.

Hedwig redefined the stage and film version of the Rock musical. Now that it is one of the touring productions, the multi-million dollar big-ticket shows, it hasn’t lost the small theatre honesty and the music remains some of the best written for theatre, ever. The production value is increased, with moving sets and bigger animations for “Origins of Love” but the heart, and soul, has remained.
via DarrenCrissArmy

Poppy

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From DarrenCrissArmy:


From Mike Potter:

# Repost pott28 
http://ift.tt/2f3EoBN
amazing show tonite. #darrencriss #hollywoodpantagestheatre #hollywood #hollywoodpantagestheatre #hedwigonbway





From a Hedwig fan and a voice actor:


Tara is the voice of Bulbasaur on Pokémon. 
DarrenCrissArmy






Jack De Sena saw Darren.  :happy face

# Repost jackdesena 

My buddy #darrencriss is absurdly talented and you should see his show. http://ift.tt/2gkhlFm
DarrenCrissArmy

Note: Jack De Sena is a voice actor (Sokka in Avatar:  The Last Airbender).



Last edited by Poppy on Mon Jan 16, 2017 4:19 pm; edited 1 time in total

Poppy

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Some tweets:

Will Friedle (Transformers: Robots in Disguise) saw Darren.  :happy face




Note:  Nicole Dubuc is a writer (Transformers) and an actor.












Note:  Christine Boylan is a writer for TV (Castle).





Poppy

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Some tweets:

Speak of the devil, Jonathan Gabay of FOX, went to see the show.





Note:  Lindsay Miller is an editorial director of video at Popsugar/


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From DarrenCrissArmy:


# Repost kimo_cruz    Got to see my boy #darrencriss in his broadway show #hedwigandtheangryinch He is so fucken talented and brilliant! Must see show!! #darrencriss #hedwig #broadway #musical #hapaboys #tbt #menofhawaii #hothunkphilippines #blaineanderson #glee #humor #livetheatre #actor #photooftheday #hollywood #star #moviestar http://ift.tt/2g1D3ce

Poppy

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Some tweets:

Willie Garson, the actor who was in White Collar with  Matt Bomer, saw the show: 



Note:  I believe the part of the tweet about the fake Republican conmen is referring to Mike Pence's attendance of Hamilton.  You may find this article interesting:  NY Times






Note:  Barry White is a journalist with @KTNV.






















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