Interview: Rocktopia guitarist Tony Bruno discusses upcoming Broadway run with Train’s Pat Monahan

Rocktopia, the musical production that fuses classic rock hits with classical compositions will be making its Broadway premiere from March 20 to April 29 at The Broadway Theatre in New York City.

For it’s six-week engagement, the live concert will be performed by a diverse array of rock, Broadway, and opera vocalists backed by a symphony orchestra, choir and  rock band performing the works of artists like Journey, Mozart, Queen, Tchaikovsky, Heart, Beethoven, Led Zeppelin, Copland, The Who and more.

As part of the musical celebration, Grammy-award winning lead vocalist, Pat Monahan (Train), will also be making his Broadway debut in Rocktopia and will perform multiple songs throughout the show, including “Kashmir” by  Led Zeppelin, as well as a Train hit merged with classical composition.

AXS recently spoke with Rocktopia lead guitarist Tony Bruno (whose list of credits includes working Enrique Iglesias and Rihanna) about Rocktopia and more in this new interview.

AXS: How did Rocktopia all come about?

Tony Bruno: Randall Fleischer, Rob Evan and Bill Franzblau have been working on this project for close to eight years. There have been different incarnations of it along the way but they’ve finally found the perfect mixture of classical and classic rock without it being a mash-up.

AXS: How did you become involved in the production?

TB: A little over two years ago, I got a call asking if I’d like to come down and audition. I hadn’t done an audition in almost thirty years and I remember when I arrived, there wasn’t even a band! It was just going to be me and a midi piano version of the songs to rock out to. I was blown away when they called me back later that night and said, “You’re our guy!” It was very exciting and I’m enjoying the hell out of it.

AXS: What was it like performing with all those amazing musicians for the first time?

TB: The first thing that struck me was just how many people were pushing each other to do the greatest version of themselves. The talent was overwhelming. I remember when we were rehearsing for our show in Budapest [“Rocktopia: Live from Budapest”], we played along with a recording of the orchestra. It sounded big, but only as big as it could sound through your monitors. But I’ll never forget when we got to the Budapest Opera House and the very first down beat of “Baba O’Riley.” When the orchestra came in behind me, it was equivalent to that scene in “Back To The Future” where Michael J. Fox’s character hits the guitar chord with that giant speaker behind him and goes flying [laughs]!. That’s what it felt like. It was amazing.

Read the rest of my
Interview with Tony Bruno by Clicking Here.

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