Lewis to play Phantom
Norm Lewis has been tapped to be Broadway’s next Phantom in the megahit “The Phantom of the Opera,” a move that makes him the first African-American to slip behind the famous mask on the Great White Way.
Producers said Thursday the Tony Award nominee, who brought his deep and rich voice as Porgy to the recent “Porgy and Bess” revival, will make his “Phantom” debut opposite a returning Sierra Boggess as Christine beginning May 12.
“I’m overwhelmed. The idea of doing something that I’ve always wanted to do and it coming to fruition is amazing,” Lewis said in a phone interview Thursday.
No laughing matter
Comedian George Wallace is in a Las Vegas courtroom seeking damages from a resort and a credit card company for a leg injury he received when he tripped over electrical wiring while performing in 2007.
Jury selection continued Thursday in Clark County District Court for the trial of the lawsuit filed in 2009.
It claims Wallace suffered a ruptured Achilles tendon during a private show at the Bellagio resort for an HSBC Card Services Inc. corporate audience.
Wallace is seeking unspecified damages of more than $50,000 for the injury and lost income.
The companies deny responsibility. In court documents, attorneys for Bellagio say Wallace was careless.
Seeking Walker’s daughter
Paul Walker’s mother is asking a Los Angeles court to appoint her as guardian of the late actor’s 15-year-old daughter.
Records show Cheryl Ann Walker filed a petition Tuesday to become the legal guardian of her granddaughter in accordance with the actor’s final wishes.
The filings state that Meadow Rain Walker has been living with her grandmother since her father was killed in a fiery car crash in November.
The filings state that Meadow Walker’s mother is also living with Cheryl Walker in her home but should not be the primary caretaker for her daughter due to alcoholism. The will of the “Fast & the Furious” star called for his father to handle his estate’s finances and his mother to care for his daughter if he died before she reached adulthood.
Orbison family singers
Roy Orbison’s three sons are all musicians but never really got to play music with their dad — until now.
Wesley, Roy Jr. and Alex Orbison have helped create a new song by their father that will appear on the 25th anniversary reissue and expansion of Orbison’s final album, “Mystery Girl.” They found an old vocal track for a song called “The Way Is Love” originally recorded on a boombox and were able to reclaim it using technology that had to be created to accomplish the work. They then added new instrumentation with the help of another son of a music legend, co-producer John Carter Cash.
“It really brought us closer together in a lot of ways,” said Alex Orbison, 38, who contributed drums and backing vocals to the track. “We were able to finish it up and get it out by Father’s Day, too, which was obviously special to us.”
“Mystery Girl” will be re-released May 20.