Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Local artist's masterpiece turned into musical

NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. (WKBW) - Artist Jonathan Rogers said Halloween was his inspiration for his nationally-renowned cartoon Witch's Night Out in 1978, which is now being turned into a musical!
“Halloween needed a new interpretation and new definition. It was drawings brought to life and everything was drawn by hand,” Rogers said.
After more than three decades, Rogers, who lives in Niagara Falls, said his story and eccentric characters will literally be coming to life on stage.
“We worked out a deal with the Broadway people, who purchased an option on the story to develop it into a musical,” Rogers said.
For this artist, it's a dream come true. “Everybody is excited about it. It gives it a legitimacy and power that it didn't have before it was connected with a Broadway show. Wow!”
The cartoon featured the voices of comedic legend Gilda Radner and others when they were just starting out in their careers in the late 70s. Rogers said it was Radner's voice that gave the witch her deep character.
“She has power and the witch's wand symbolized the power that women have,” Rogers said.
He said the cartoon is fun for people of all ages and the musical is going to take it to a new level, keeping his witch alive for generations to come.
“She's sort of my female component with gestures and facial expression. She brought a lot into my creative source and she was my muse,” Rogers said.