Fox didn’t call it “Rent: Live,” and in hindsight that may have been a wise choice.
“Rent,” the network’s latest musical production hit an unexpected hitch when actor Brennin Hunt, who plays Roger Davis in the show, broke his foot during Saturday’s final rehearsal performance, which was taped in front of a live audience.
So the cast announced during an early commercial break that much of the three-hour broadcast airing Sunday would, in fact, be from Saturday. Unlike regular Broadway shows, Fox’s “Rent” had no understudies to fill in for such an event. TV musicals typically tape late rehearsals as a safety net in the event of a technical difficulty or other problem.
But the troupe performed the show live Sunday anyway, just not for the cameras, as Hunt sang from a wheelchair, Fox confirmed.
“Most of what you’ll see tonight will come from last night’s performance,” Jordan Fisher, who plays Mark, told the audience. “But we have all rallied together to rework the final act so that all of us including Brennin and the original Broadway cast can perform for you, live.” Hunt performed in the final live segment with a large cast on his leg.
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Taye Diggs, Idina Menzel, Adam Pascal and Jesse L. Martin were among the original Broadway cast in Jonathan Larson’s 1996 production, and Menzel tweeted a photo that included her co-stars from Saturday’s rehearsals. They came out for a reprise of “Seasons of Love,” the show’s most popular song.
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