This week, Jared reviews an “ExtraOrdinary” show at the A.R.T. and discusses Jake Shears' latest album and new memoir, “Boys Keep Swinging.”

“ExtraOrdinary,” presented by the American Repertory Theater at the Loeb Drama Center through Nov. 30.

Patina Miller (Pippin) is one of several guest performers appearing in "ExtraOrdinary"
Gretjen Helene Photography, courtesy of the American Repertory Theater

The A.R.T. is celebrating 10 years of musical theater under the artistic direction of Diane Paulus with “ExtraOrdinary.” Presented as a cabaret, “ExtraOrdinary” showcases songs and stories from past American Repertory Theater musicals such as Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, Pippin, Prometheus Bound, The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess and Waitress. It also features a rotating cast of award-winning actors from past productions, including Lea DeLaria, Rachel Bay Jones, Norm Lewis, Patina Miller, and Alicia Hall Moran.

“To assume that musicals are not as powerful as serious drama was a point of view that I think I took on and said ‘No, that's not necessarily true,’” Paulus said.

Jared describes “ExtraOrdinary” as “a show brimming with star power and splashy music. But it’s utterly grounded in the very organic and personal constitution of the actor’s life and individual story. Which, and this is the reason they’re on stage, is because it’s also our own.”

Jake Shears, the self-titled solo album and artist’s memoir “Boys Keep Swinging” are both available now.

The lead singer of the multi platinum-selling band “Scissor Sisters” is going out on his own and telling stories. Singer/songwriter Jake Shears recently released his first solo album on Freida Jean Records, a self-titled venture featuring hit singles “Creep City” and “Big Bushy Mustache.” In addition to his latest album, Shears has also released a memoir of his life. Titled “Boys Keep Swinging,” the book explores the artist’s revealing evolution from a young misfit to a fixture in New York City’s “electroclash” music scene.
“The thing about writing a memoir,” Shears said, “[is that] there are relationships and people that you have never had these kinds of conversations with before, that suddenly are going to see you say things about yourself that they've never heard you say. And that's a really intense thing.”

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