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A timeline of the relationship of Broadway stars Ben Cook and Gabi Diaz

by Editorial Staff
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A love story on the heart of Broadway Illinois touched the hearts of followers, and the real-life couple is partly chargeable for the present’s magic.

Ben Prepare dinner and Gabi Diaz to play Carl and Shelby, respectively, within the new musical, which has acquired 4 Tony Award nominations since its April 2024 debut. Choreography and director Justin Peck is a New York Metropolis ballet prodigy and former Tony winner higher identified for his choreography Steven Spielberg‘s West Facet Story the film is Illinois makes use of dance to inform a narrative of affection, loss and new beginnings. (The play makes use of music from Sufyan StevensFavourite album Illinois carried out by vocalists and a band on a hill above the actors-dancers.)

Prepare dinner and Diaz not solely had a connection when the work started Illinoisevery had labored with Peck previously, as had lots of their colleagues. Illinois additionally the celebrities Ricky Ubeda as Henry, the middle of a love triangle with Carl and Shelby, with Ahmad Simmons, Jeanette Delgado, Rachel Lockhart, Byron Title and extra dancers, every bringing Stevens’ music to life on stage.

“We’ve got such a wealthy emotional historical past: Gabi is my girlfriend in actual life — we reside collectively — and Ricky, Ahmad and I’ve labored collectively many occasions,” Prepare dinner instructed Broadway.com in a joint interview with Ubeda in June. 2024. “All of those play a job in our capacity to attach with one another and share that with an viewers.”

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Working with Diaz and their pals on a present that reimagines what Broadway will be was like a dream come true. “This expertise will damage any work we do sooner or later,” Prepare dinner added. “The usual has been set, and if it is a completely different model over the following 10 years, we’ll be fortunate.”

Illinois marks Diaz’s Broadway debut — followers can credit score her with a win So that you suppose you may dance season 12 — however Prepare dinner was across the block on the Nice White Manner. He starred in Ragtime, Billy Elliot, Newsies, Imply Ladies and extra.

Scroll down for a behind-the-scenes take a look at Prepare dinner and Diaz’s relationship:

2019 yr

Each Prepare dinner and Diaz starred in Spielberg’s adaptation West Facet Story. He was a part of the Jets and she or he was a Shark.

2020 yr

A timeline of the relationship of Broadway stars Ben Cook and Gabi Diaz
Courtesy of Ben Prepare dinner/Instagram

The couple has been spending quite a lot of time collectively throughout the COVID shutdown, usually sharing recollections of walks within the park, hikes and extra.

2021 yr

If West Facet Story Premiering after pandemic-related delays, Prepare dinner and Diaz celebrated the milestone. Diaz wrote by way of Instagram, “This expertise modified my life,” whereas Prepare dinner wrote his personal put up, “I am so excited for everybody to see what our motley crew has been as much as.”

2022 yr

A timeline of the relationship of Broadway stars Ben Cook and Gabi Diaz
Courtesy of Gabi Diaz/Instagram

Prepare dinner and Diaz shared snaps from their holidays in Los Angeles and London, in addition to their favourite moments with their canine in New York. In December, Diaz shared a candy tribute to her companion, writing by way of Instagram: “Completely satisfied birthday cutie. 💛.”

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2023 yr

The pair’s stage collaboration started with a regional run Illinois (authentic title Illinois) at Bard Faculty’s Fisher Middle within the Hudson Valley. “What a magical second in time. 🌼,” Diaz captioned an Instagram put up that summer season.

2024 yr

A timeline of the relationship of Broadway stars Ben Cook and Gabi Diaz
Courtesy of Ben Prepare dinner/Instagram

After the manufacturing on the Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Illinois made its method to New York, opening on the Park Avenue Armory earlier than transferring to Broadway. The manufacturing acquired 4 Tony Award nominations and celebrated its premiere with a gala run in Might.

“It was two years within the making and I obtained to do it with a few of my greatest pals [and] my companion, my girlfriend,” Prepare dinner mentioned in an interview from the gala, pointing to Diaz. “I am over the moon.”

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