The Broadway theater scene is currently quite a traffic jam of new productions, vying to open before the Tony Award deadline at the end of this month.
My usual workload is one drawing a week for Playbill.com, but this time of year requires double duty, and even at that, I do not get the chance to see and draw all of the Broadway productions.
I started the week with a big drawing of the new musical, Motown. This is a show about the life of record producer/songwriter, Berry Gordy. It is already a big hit, with the winning formula of a score of very popular Motown hits.
Even though Berry Gordy is not performing in the show ( another actor plays his part), I felt it would be a good idea to include a drawing of Gordy in the design.
There were so many characters to choose from for this project, so, I chose the individuals and groups that would be the most fun to capture: Barry Gordy, top, overlooking some of his "discoveries": Little Stevie Wonder, The Supremes, and The Temptations.
Bottom: Brandon Victor Dixon as Barry Gordy and Valiska LeKae as Diana Ross.
The second drawing this week for Playbill.com was Nathan Lane in The Nance
Nathan Lane is a caricaturist's dream assignment. He has big features, which he uses brilliantly as an actor on the stage. I've drawn him several times, and I always try to make each drawing different.
He plays a burlesque comic from the late 1930s, a "nance," or effeminate character for laughs. He wears some very stylish and outlandish costumes in the play. I was taken by a morning coat he wore, which made him look dapper, as well as comic. I like to draw formal wear, as it gives me the chance to do textures as well as large areas of solid black.
Nathan Lane has big, sad, Basset-Hound eyes, and a big round nose with enormous nostrils. I tried to capture that look. Well, it was fun trying!