Call Redialed: NEW Isaac Sutton Interview: "Broadway Israel" at Feinstein's/54 Below
Last year I had so much fun interviewing Isaac Sutton that when he called me back, of course, I answered the phone.
Isaac is returning to Feinstein’s/54 Below with an updated version of his concert Broadway Israel, which features beloved hits from Wicked, NBC’s “Smash,” The Phantom of The Opera, Cabaret, Fiddler on the Roof, My Fair Lady, The Sound of Music, Annie Get Your Gun, and many more.
In this updated show, Broadway’s Amanda Jane Cooper (Wicked) and Ali Ewoldt from The Phantom of The Opera will be joining Isaac for some special duets.
Broadway Israel comes back to Feinstein’s/54 Below (254 West 54th Street, between Broadway & 8th Avenue) on Saturday, October 5 at 9:30pm. Click here for tickets!
1. It's been just over a year since our last interview together. What has been the biggest change for you this past year? Well, this year was filled with great new adventures. I was able to get my shows to River Cruises in Europe, on The Rhine River and The Seine River. This is something I’ve never done before and it opened up a new market for me.
I truly feel blessed to be doing what I love and at the same time explore different countries and cities that I’ve never had a chance to visit. In November, I’ll be bringing my shows to The Danube River, and I’m definitely looking forward to that as well.
I also continued with the Broadway Israel international project, which I’m very proud of, and in March 2019, I toured the theaters in Israel with Broadway’s DeLaney Westfall (Kinky Boots, Sweeney Todd, Beautiful).
Also, my last concert right before coming to NYC was a very special one for me. It was a concert in The Park in front of 6,000 people, backed by a symphony orchestra. I got to sing songs that I’ve never sung before and that was both challenging and rewarding!
2. On October 5, you are once again returning to Feinstein's/54 Below with your concert Broadway Israel. What will be new in this concert that didn't happen at last year's show? First of all, I’m going to share the stage with two unbelievable performers that I’ve never worked with before. Amanda Jane Cooper (Wicked), who is one of Broadway’s longest running “Glinda’s,” and Ali Ewoldt from The Phantom of The Opera.
I’m also going to sing some new songs and duets which I haven’t sung before here in The US. For example, I’m planning on singing “Tonight” from West Side Story as a duet with Ali Ewoldt. She starred in that show as “Maria” and I’ll be “Tony” for one night only on October 5.
This will definitely be a very special night!
3. At this concert, you have two very special guests appearing with you, Amanda Jane Cooper and Ali Ewoldt. How did you come to have them join you for this show? I have always loved sharing the stage with other singers, specifically soprano singers, because I feel the soprano voice blends well with a bass baritone voice.
So, in preparation for this upcoming show at Feinstein’s/54 Below, I was looking for new Broadway guests stars to share the stage with. I reached out to Amanda and Ali and was truly happy they both decided to join the show. I’m also hoping to bring them to Israel to tour with me soon in 2020!
4. In this show you will be singing songs from a variety of Broadway shows. One show listed is Phantom of the Opera. Do you have any stories where you encountered a real-life "Phantom of the Opera"? Phantom of The Opera has always been such a highlight moment in my shows. About a month ago, I got to see the musical in Israel, as part of the Phantom World Tour. Even though I’ve seen the show many times before, this was a very special and moving experience for me, as it was conducted by maestro extraordinaire David Andrews Rogers and starring the magnificent Meghan Picerno as “Christine.”
The only story I can share where I almost encountered a real life Phantom was, believe it or not, at Feinstein’s/ 54 Below. The dressing rooms are located at a high floor in the building and one needs to take an elevator to get to the stage level. I got stuck in those elevators a few times and thought I might not be able to perform. Luckily, the Phantom let me out!
5. Another show you are going to be spotlighting is The Sound of Music. Let’s play with the song “Maria.” How would you solve a problem like Maria? Amanda Jane Cooper recently asked me about the conflict going on in the Middle East, and it really got me thinking. How does one solve a conflict of so many years?
I believe the keyword is LISTEN, be open to negotiations and always strive for compassion, and seeking a partner you could speak to on the other side, that would also be willing to listen, negotiate and compromise. I’m sure the day will come when we all “climb that mountain” together! Someday, Somehow, Somewhere!
6. What is one show you want to star in Israel that you have not had the chance to yet? Unfortunately, there are not that many roles written for bass-baritone voices.
But there is one role that I would love to play someday, and that is the role of “Javert” in Les Miserables. I recently met the composer of Les Mis, Claude-Michel Schönberg, and it was so nice to thank him for the inspiration.
7. What is something you have not revealed about yourself in a previous interview that you are ready to share with us? As you may know, I’m a bass-baritone singer, which means I have a low voice, so I’m always cast in shows as the bad guy, the villain or the murderer!
But there is another role that I’m really hoping to play one day, and that is the role of “Billy Flynn” in Chicago The Musical. I have never shared this before, but “Billy Flinn’s” “All I Care About Is Love” is my “lucky charm” song. Whenever I’ve sung it at auditions, I got the part I was auditioning for. So who knows what’s going to happen after I sing it for the first time live in concert in NYC on October 5 at Feinstein’s/54 Below.....
More on Isaac:
Isaac’s most recent theater credits in Israel include the lead role of “Bobby” in Stephen Sondheim’s Company, Jason Robert Brown’s Parade at The Jerusalem Festival, the French musical Romeo & Juliette, The Mikado, 1776 and more. Over the last decade, Isaac has performed solo shows such as Las Vegas-Tel Aviv, Broadway & All That Jazz, Tonight A Musical and Shalom Hollywood.
In his career Isaac has been introducing Israeli audiences to the Great American Songbook and performs regularly at Israel’s National Theaters and the region’s top Symphony Orchestras. After successful shows in the US, Europe, Canada, Brazil and across Israel — including The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, Habima National Theater, The Cameri Theater Tel Aviv, Gesher Theater Jaffa — Sutton recently performed a duet with Tony Award winner Kristin Chenoweth at The Mayo Performing Arts Center. He is the recipient of honors from the Ladino International Festival, accompanied by the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, and the Israel’s Musical Festival. He started singing live at the age of 21, while serving in the Israeli Army. He was asked to be the MC and singer at Yitzhak Rabin's memorial services. He is an MBA graduate with honors from Tel Aviv University. Isaac got his musical theatre training at Circle in the Square and Manhattan School of Music.