The Broadway cast of RENT
The Broadway cast of RENT

Broadway enthusiasts have been eagerly anticipating the forthcoming live musical production of Rent, set to air on Fox television on Sunday, January 27. The Jonathan Larson musical was a smash hit on Broadway in 1996 and went on to spawn national tours, an Off-Broadway revival, a film version, and film version of the 2008 performance. In every variation, one of the most exciting parts of these productions has been learning who would be in the cast. The Fox live musical production of Rent has announced who will be playing the beloved Bohemians for the telecast.

The cast will include Tinashe as Mimi Marquez, Brennin Hunt as Roger Davis, Jordan Fisher as Mark Cohen, Vanessa Hudgens as Maureen Johnson, Brandon Victor Dixon as Tom Collins, Valentina as Angel Dumont Shunard, Kiersey Clemons as Joanne Jefferson, and Mario as Benjamin Coffin III. Keala Settle (The Greatest Showman) will join the cast in a special role to perform “Seasons of Love.” Bernie Telsey, the casting director for the original Broadway production of Rent assembled the company for the Fox television live production.

The Fox production of Rent will be directed by Michael Greif who directed the original Broadway production of the show. The live telecast will be broadcast from the historic Fox Studios in Los Angeles. Acclaimed film, television, and theater producer Marc Platt (Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert, Grease: Live, La La Land, Wicked), along with the estate of writer/composer Jonathan Larson, will executive-produce the event.

“The groundbreaking, Tony Award, and Pulitzer Prize-winning musical is a re-imagining of Puccini’s “La Bohème,” and set in New York City’s gritty East Village. Rent tells the unforgettable story of seven artists struggling to follow their dreams during a time of great social and political turmoil. Winner of four Tony Awards and the Pulitzer Prize, writer/composer Jonathan Larson’s tour de force continues to offer an inspiring message of hope and friendship.”

The creative team for Rent will include costume designer Angela Wendt (who designed the costumes for the original Broadway production). Additional creative team members include Obie Award winner Kristoffer Diaz writing the adaptation for television, Emmy Award winner Al Gurdon as lighting designer, Tony Award and Grammy Award winner Stephen Oremus as music director and producer, Jason Sherwood as set designer, and two-time Emmy Award nominee Sonya Tayeh as the choreographer.

Mark Robinson is the author of the two-volume encyclopedia The World of Musicals, The Disney Song Encyclopedia, and The Encyclopedia of Television Theme Songs. He maintains a theater and entertainment blog at markrobinsonwrites.com.