A revival of the beloved musical "Pippin" closes on Broadway today, but a national touring company is criss-crossing the country . . . and that warms the heart of David Pogue, who's been a "Pippin" follower for decades:
"Join us, leave your fields to flower.
Join us, leave your cheese to sour.
Join us, come and waste an hour or two.
Sasha Allen has performed on Broadway. She was a finalist on the TV show, "The Voice." But nothing prepared her for a challenge like this.
"I've never done this style of dance before," she said, "so the training that I've been doing has been kicking my butt, right? OK, it really has!"
Allen leads the cast of the new national tour of "Pippin," the Broadway musical revival that won four Tony Awards in 2013. She had only a few months to master a role immortalized by Ben Vereen.
"We've got magic to do, just for you,
We've got miracle plays to play.
We've got parts to perform, hearts to warm.
Kings and things to take by storm
As we go along our way."
"Pippin" originally opened on Broadway in 1972, directed and choreographed by the legendary Bob Fosse, with songs by Stephen Schwartz.
Pippin, and his father King Charlemagne, were actual historical figures -- but this musical is no history lesson. It's about a young man's very modern journey through war, politics and love, to find himself, to find his "Corner of the Sky."
For the Broadway revival, Tony-winning director Diane Paulus turned the show's chorus into a troupe of circus performers. As she sees it, the circus theme is perfect for a national tour.
"They're actually going to pick up that tent and move it city to city," she told Pogue. "There's a reality of that touring life that I think is only going to reinforce the meaning of the show with every stop we make."
The touring cast will make stops in more than 25 U.S. cities.
The circus theme also means that singing and dancing aren't enough; the cast also had to learn acrobatics.
Pippin's grandmother is played by Lucie Arnaz: Broadway veteran, daughter of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz -- and novice on the trapeze.
"They said, 'Here's how you get strong: You do these [exercises], and you do those, and you do this, and trust the process, and pretty soon you'll be able to do that,'" Arnez said.
"My body is this way and I have to still sing the last chorus of the song, and then go upside-down and sing the last line. But that's kind of fun!"
Also, learning new tricks, Kyle Selig in the title role. This tour is his first real gig. "I've never even thought about being an acrobat -- it's like learning a whole new art form," he said.