Today we continue the 2012 Tony Awards Clip Countdown - culminating in the final entry on June 10, aka Tony Sunday - with a focus on two tremendous theatrical talents who have crossed over from Broadway fame to international acclaim on Fox's hit musical dramedy series GLEE, which ends its third season tonight: HAIRSPRAY's Matthew Morrison and SPRING AWAKENING's Lea Michele.
Few entertainment entities in the last fifty years have had such a significant impact on the public's perception of musical theatre as GLEE has had. Musicals are cool again and that is a direct result of the popularity of Ryan Murphy's impossibly outrageous, yet all-too-affecting musical series that has defied the odds at every turn. GLEE is the underdog that won, and, it has offered a platform for Broadway's best to do what they do best for a national and international audience with millions of viewers and introduce their ample abilities to the world - GLEE leads Matthew Morrison and Lea Michele, as well as recurring guest stars Jonathan Groff, Kristin Chenoweth, Idina Menzel, Cheyenne Jackson and Carol Burnett, in addition this year's Tony Awards host, Neil Patrick Harris and many more. GLEE continues the great tradition of musical theatre and offers it to us in a medium available and accessible to those outside of NYC and introduces the finest talent in any area of show business in the process.
First up, here is Matthew Morrison alongside the rest of the original cast of the Tony-winning Best Musical HAIRSPRAY performing the contagious, effervescent capper, "You Can't Stop The Beat", in 2003. Stay tuned for another Matt Morrison Tony Awards performance on our countdown with the forthcoming LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA entry coming soon.
Next, see Lea Michele with another future GLEE featured player, Jonathan Groff, in this enticing medley from the multi-Tony-winning SPRING AWAKENING in 2007. Another Lea Michele Tony Awards performance will be appearing on the countdown - when she was part of the original cast of the Tony-winning RAGTIME - so be sure to catch that coming up.
Lastly and most importantly, enjoy Matthew Morrison and Lea Michele in their stupendous solo spotlights from the 2010 Tony Awards, as introduced on the telecast by original LEGALLY BLONDE lead Laura Bell Bundy. Morrison charms with a honey-voiced and athletic "All I Need Is The Girl" from GYPSY, whiLe Michele makes her big bid for the role of a lifetime - Fanny Brice - on the stage of Radio City with a spirited and impassioned "Don't Rain On My Parade" from FUNNY GIRL.
So, now that Lea Michele and Matt Morrison have both gone on to gargantuan success on the small screen - and, thanks to Michele's appearance in the hit ensemble comedy NEW YEAR'S DAY and Morrison's leading role in the new romatic release, WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOU'RE EXPECTING, both have moved into movies, as well - when they make their eventual return to the Great White Way what roles in what shows would you like to see them take on? In a show together, perhaps? Although they have treated us to many musical theatre songs over the course of sixty-plus episodes of GLEE - not to mention these Tony Awards moments and more coming up - what musical do they seem destined to bring to Broadway - and maybe Tony glory - some season soon? Will Lea Michele make a formidable and fierce FUNNY GIRL? Will Matt Morrison return to the Rodgers & Hammerstein canon he so successfully explored in the Lincoln Center revival of SOUTH PACIFIC, which he starred in just prior to his leap to superstardom on GLEE? Only time will tell!