Sonya Tayeh to Choreograph Fox's Rent Live!

Get ready for a lot of flannel and some major 90's nostalgia, ya'll, because Rent is coming to your television screens. The hit Broadway musical will make the jump to television on Fox on Sunday, January 27th. 

There are some pretty big names signed on to this production! Vanessa Hudgens, High School Musical star and current So You Think You Can Dance judge, will play the sexy and facetious Maureen Johnson. And she's not the only familiar SYTYCD face - Hannahlei Cabanilla, this past season's winner, will also perform! Jordan Fisher will portray Mark Cohen, following up his successful foray into live TV musicals (he was recently seen in Grease Live! alongside Hudgens in 2016). Brandon Victor Dixon, another live TV musical alum, has also signed on. He joined John Legend onstage earlier this year in Jesus Christ Superstar, and is set to play Tom Collins. The casting seems pretty spot on, right? Probably because Bernie Telsey, the original casting director for the first Broadway Production, was in charge. 

So there's definitely some star power - but let's get down to the important part. How will the dancing be? There are some pretty smashing musical and movement numbers in the show - La Vie Boheme and the Tango: Maureen come to mind! Well it seems the choreography is in good hands, because Sonya Tayeh has agreed to work on the production.

Tayeh seems like a great choice for this, as she brings knowledge for not only stage choreography, but screen choreography as well. This New York City-based choreographer took a spot on the world stage for her work on So You Think You Can Dance, for which she was nominated for two Emmy Awards. She was also awarded a Lucille Lortel & Obie Award for "Outstanding Choreography" for the off-Broadway play Kung Fu. She's got an impeccable eye for detail and has continued to hone her theatrical chops as the choreographer for Moulin Rouge, which ran in Boston over the summer and is expected to transition over to Broadway. But she's versatile as well - the Martha Graham Dance Company commissioned a work by her back in 2015.

They've clearly got the moves - but how will it translate on stage? We'll just have to wait and see!

About the author

Anne Luben has performed works by notable choreographers such as Donald McKayle, Bill T. Jones, Jiri Kylian, Idan Cohen, Alex Ketley, and Summer Lee Rhatigan, among others.