Friday, 28 October 2016

Jennifer Lopez to Star in NBC's Next Live Musical, Bye Bye Birdie

They’ve sang in the hills of Austria, flown over Neverland, eased on down the road to Oz and woken up in Baltimore. Now, NBC is ready to transport viewers to Sweet Apple, Ohio, for its next live musical.

In a conversation moderated by PEOPLE and Entertainment Weekly Editorial Director Jess Cagle at the Paley Center for Media in Los Angeles Thursday, NBC Chairman Robert Greenblatt revealed his network’s next live musical will be Bye Bye Birdie Live! starring Jennifer Lopez.

“To have a superstar like Jennifer Lopez starring in this classic show, which every high school in America has done, will ensure that our holiday musicals continue to be must-see events for the whole family,” Greenblatt — who has been the driving force behind NBC’s signature live productions

Greenblatt also revealed it was actually Lopez who suggested she step into the dancing shoes originally filled by Chita Rivera, who starred as Rosie alongside Dick Van Dyke in the original 1960 Broadway production and 1963 film version of Bye Bye Birdie.

“Broadway musicals and films fueled my childhood and Bye Bye Birdie was one of my favorites,” says Lopez who will executive produce the production with Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas, Benny Medina, Craig Zadan and Neil Meron. “I’m proud to be a part of the NBC family with Shades of Blue and I thought it would be a blast to take on one of their big live musicals.