Peter and the Darling children fly during the Peter Pan Live! dress rehearsal.

Live TV performances are inherently nerve-wracking, but hopefully, tonight’s Peter Pan Live! on NBC will be like getting a front-row ticket to a Broadway production. After all, the cast features dancers who have already graced The Great White Way, including several Newsies alums as pirates and Lost Boys. Plus, we’ll get to see Christopher Walken do a little soft-shoe as the notorious Captain Hook. (The actor has an off-Broadway musical background and a soft spot for song-and-dance.)

Actress Allison Williams as Peter has some challenging aerial work ahead of her, but in behind-the-scenes videos, she looks strong in her flying harness. Plus, if director/choreographer Rob Ashford has faith in her, so do we! He told The New York Times, “The first day of rehearsal, I thought, ‘This is someone who knows this character.’”

Photo by Virginia Sherwood/NBC

Ryan Steele, who is taking Broadway by storm as "Specs" in Disney's Newsies, had no false illusions about what awaited him at auditions in New York. He credits Dori Matkowski of Dance Dynamics Performing Arts Center in Michigan for recognizing that being prepared for anything and everything is the key to success.

"Miss Dori instilled in me everything I would ever need to know about professionalism. At ten, I already had what I needed to pursue a professional dance career: I knew how auditions would run and I had a resume and an 8x10 head shot. I even knew what colors looked best on me. Miss Dori also understood that success depends on versatility. She literally used to push me through the door to take voice lessons. But now I'm so glad she did. When I moved to New York, everything she had taught me helped take the shock away."

Photo by Deen Van Meer, courtesy of Ryan Steele

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