Stop the Presses! Disney’s “Newsies” Blows into DPAC on June 2nd for Eight Exuberant Performances


Next up for the Durham Performing Arts Center is the 2012 Tony Award®-winning Broadway musical sensation, Disney’s Newsies, which will play June 2-7 at DPAC in the American Tobacco Historic District. Newsies is based on the 1992 Disney movie musical, directed by Kenny Ortega, which dramatized the 1899 New York City newspaper strike.

The tour cast stars Dan DeLuca as a “newsie” (i.e., newspaper delivery boy) named Jack Kelly, Steve Blanchard as New York World publisher Joseph Pulitzer, Stephanie Styles as reporter Katherine Plumber, Angela Grovey as newsboy friend and theater owner Medda Larkin, Jacob Kemp as Jack’s friend Davey, and Zachary Sayle as Jack’s disabled pal Crutchie. Vincent Crocilla and Anthony Rosenthal alternate as Davey’s little brother Les.

According to the Durham Performing Arts Center:

Newsies features a Tony Award”-winning score with music by eight-time Academy Award winner Alan Menken and lyrics by Jack Feldman, with a book by four-time Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein. Produced by Disney Theatrical Productions, Newsies is directed by Tony nominee Jeff Calhoun and choreographed by Christopher Gattelli, who won a 2012 Tony Award for his work.

Newsies … consistently exceeded expectations since premiering on Broadway at The Nederlander Theatre in March 2012. Originally transferred to Broadway [from the Paper Mill Playhouse in Millburn, NJ] as a limited engagement of a few dozen performances, the breakout hit [that completed its Broadway run on Aug. 24, 2014, after 1,004 performances].

“In a remarkable demonstration of the breadth of the title’s appeal, ticket orders had arrived from all 50 states within weeks of its first Broadway performance in 2012. Since then, Newsies has set and broken seven Nederlander Theatre house records and [was] the biggest hit of the 2011-12 season.

“The show received 23 major theatrical nominations — including eight Tony Award nods — and won Tony, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards for Best Score and Best Choreography. One of Broadway’s highest profile hits, it has been featured nationally on ‘Dancing with the Stars,’ ‘The View,’ ‘Good Morning America,’ ‘Nightline,’ ‘Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade,’ and ‘The CBS Thanksgiving Day Parade.’

“Included in the best-of year lists for Entertainment Weekly, USA Today, and The Daily News, Newsies [was] one of the most critically praised shows of recent seasons. Entertainment Weekly raves, ‘stop the presses! Newsies is an irresistible, high energy winner… a surprise sensation!’ Time Out New York calls Newsies, ‘an invigorating extravaganza! A barnstorming, four-alarm delight,’ and The New York Times hails it, ‘a musical worth singing about,’ praising the ‘terrific songs — buoyant melodies by Alan Menken and rousing lyrics by Jack Feldman — and a sweet, funny, emotionally satisfying book by Harvey Fierstein.’

“Set in New York City at the turn of the century, Newsies is the rousing tale of Jack Kelly, a charismatic newsboy and leader of a ragged band of teenaged ‘Newsies,’ who dreams only of a better life far from the hardship of the streets. But when publishing titans Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst raise distribution prices at the newsboys’ expense, Jack finds a cause to fight for and rallies newsies from across the city to strike for what’s right.

Newsies is inspired by the real-life ‘Newsboy Strike of 1899,’ when newsboy Kid Blink led a band of orphan and runaway newsies on a two-week-long action against Pulitzer, Hearst, and other powerful newspaper publishers.

“The stage version introduces seven brand-new songs by the original team of Menken and Feldman while keeping many of the beloved songs from the film, including ‘Carrying the Banner,’ ‘Seize the Day,’ ‘King of New York,’ and ‘Santa Fe.’

“Since the film’s 1992 theatrical release and subsequent DVD release, Newsies has grown into a cult phenomenon, and for years had been the single most requested title of all the Disney musical films not yet adapted for the stage. (The film featured a screenplay by Bob Tzudiker & Noni White (Tarzan, 102 Dalmatians).”

SECOND OPINION: May 28th Durham, NC Herald-Sun preview by Dawn Baumgartner Vaughan: (Note: You must subscribe to read this article); and May 26th Raleigh, NC Raleigh preview by Jeffrey Karasarides:

The Durham Performing Arts Center presents Disney’s NEWSIES at 7:30 p.m. June 2-4, 8 p.m. June 5, 2 and 8 p.m. June 6, and 1 and 6:30 p.m. June 7 at 123 Vivian St., Durham, North Carolina 27701, in the American Tobacco Historic District.

TICKETS: $46.54-$173.39 (including fees). Click here for DPAC Special Offers.


DPAC Box Office: 919-680-ARTS (2787),, or

Ticketmaster: 800-982-2787 or

GROUP RATES (15+ tickets): 919/281-0587,, or

SHOW: and











NOTE: Arts Access, Inc. of Raleigh will audio-describe the show’s 8 p.m. Friday, June 5th, performance.

DPAC AGE RESTRICTION (Kids at DPAC): “All guests require a ticket, regardless of age. Children under the age of 6 will not be admitted to the theater. Children must be able to sit quietly in their own seat without disturbing other guests. As a further courtesy to our guests, DPAC recommends one parent or chaperone for every one child in attendance.”


Newsies (1992 movie musical): (official website), (Turner Classic Movies page), (Internet Movie Database), and (Wikipedia).

Newsies (2011 Paper Mill Playhouse and 2012 Broadway musical): (official website), (Music Theatre International), (Internet Broadway Database), (Facebook page), (Twitter page), and (

Alan Menken (music): (official website), (Internet Broadway Database), (Facebook page), (Twitter page), and (Wikipedia).

Jack Feldman (lyrics): (Internet Broadway Database) and (Wikipedia).

Harvey Fierstein (book): (Internet Broadway Database), (Facebook page), (Twitter page), and (Wikipedia).


Robert W. McDowell has written articles for The News & Observer, The Raleigh Times, Spectator Magazine, CVNC, and Triangle Arts and Entertainment, all based in Raleigh. He edits and publishes two FREE weekly e-mail newsletters. Triangle Review provides comprehensive, in-depth coverage of local performing-arts events. (Start your FREE subscription by e-mailing and typing SUBSCRIBE TR in the Subject: line.) McDowell also maintains a FREE list of movie sneak previews. (To subscribe, e-mail and type SUBSCRIBE FFL FREE in the Subject: line.)

By Robert W. McDowell

Robert W. McDowell is a Raleigh, NC-based freelance writer, editor, and critic. He has written theater, film, book, and music previews and reviews for The News & Observer, The Raleigh Times, Spectator Magazine, and Classical Voice of North Carolina, all based in Raleigh. In 1980-91, he covered business, industry, government, and education for (We the People of) North Carolina magazine, published monthly by N.C. Citizens for Business and Industry. In April 2001, McDowell started Robert's Reviews, a FREE weekly e-mail newsletter that provides comprehensive, in-depth coverage of the performing arts in the Research Triangle area of North Carolina, which includes Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, and Carrboro. Triangle Review is the latest-and-greatest version of McDowell's original newsletter. (To start your FREE subscription, e-mail robertm748[at] and type SUBSCRIBE TR in the Subject: line.) From December 1980 until September 2017, McDowell served on the board of directors of The Cinema, Inc., a Raleigh-based nonprofit film society formed in 1966. He currently publishes a weekly list of FREE advance screenings of movies in the Triangle area. (To have your e-mail address added to this FREE list, e-mail robertm748[at] and type SUBSCRIBE FFL FREE in the Subject: line.) McDowell also co-edited and supervised the production of Jim Valvano's Guide to Great Eating (JTV Enterprises, 1984), a 224-page sports celebrity cookbook; and he served as a fact checker for Valvano: They Gave Me a Lifetime Contract, and Then They Declared Me Dead (Pocket Books, 1991).