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    Posted April 14, 2009

AEA's Gypsy Robe Goes to Andre Ward in ROCK OF AGES

Gypsy Robe Winner Andre Ward with Richie Mastascusa Previous Gypsy Robe Winner for WHITE CHRISTMAS
Walter McBride / Retna Ltd.

Anyway you want it, it's a rockin' robe!

Andre Ward is the latest recipient of Equity's coveted Gypsy Robe for ROCK OF AGES.

Recreating a time-honored tradition that began more than 50 years ago, Equity's Gypsy Robe was presented to Mr. Ward on opening night at Brooks Atkinson Theatre. Colorfully decorated with appliqués from other Broadway musicals, the Gypsy Robe is given to the chorus member with the most Broadway musical chorus credits. Andre has previously appeared on Broadway in XANADU, SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER, and THE PRODUCERS.

The ceremony began as the cast and crew gathered onstage just before curtain and formed a large circle. Equity's National Chorus Business Representative David Westphal welcomed and asked company members who were making their Broadway debuts to come forward, where they exuberantly posed for the cameras!

Next, Gypsy Robe volunteer Terry Marone invited past recipients of the robe to be acknowledged, including Adrian Bailey, Austin Colyer, Curtis Holbrook, Steve Konopelski, Richie Mastascusa, Sara Schmidt, Amber Stone, and Patrick Wetzel.

Tommar Wilson, who received the robe in HAIR, then described the Robe's illustrious history and the rules for the ceremony: each new recipient must circle the stage three times counter-clockwise and visit everyone's dressing room to receive the robe's blessing. He then proclaimed the newest robe recipient: Andre Ward.

Andre donned the robe and exuberantly circled the stage, while everyone applauded and reached out to touch the robe to receive its blessing.

From L to R Constantine Maroulis, Amy Spangler, Gypsy Robe Winner Andre Ward, and James Carpinello
Walter McBride / Retna Ltd.

Andre follows tradition and circles the stage 3 times
Click here for larger image
Walter McBride / Retna Ltd.

ROCK OF AGES Book Writer Chris D'Arienzo "breaking a leg" at the Opening Night Performance Gypsy Robe Ceremony at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre in New York City
Walter McBride / Retna Ltd.

More Gypsy Robe info...

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