Friday, May 13, 2011

Bit Parts

Every so often there are topics I want to address That I can’t impart within 140 characters on my Twitter account, but are too short for a full blog entry. Therefore, my inaugural Bit Parts, which will be an amalgamation of shorter musings.

  1. The Book of Mormon is the huge hit of the current Broadway season, playing to over 100% capacity each week. Are you curious to know what all the fuss is about? There is a MySpace page where you can receive a FREE listen. This is not a download, but a no-strings-attached way to hear the complete score.

    Interestingly, as I played the songs it struck me how visual The Book of Mormon is. The songs are funny, witty and, to some degree, profane, but unless you have seen the show you would not get all the jokes. Naturally, you could say this about most musicals, but I cannot think of a recent show where this is so prevalent.

  2. Does anyone remember a show called Spiderman? Well, it’s back! The revamped production is set to open in mid-June. This time I would be shocked if it doesn’t actually, officially, really, truly open this time around. However, don’t you feel the hoopla from the previous six months has deflated the excitement and enthusiasm for the show?

  3. Kristen Chenoweth is planning to star in a revival of the Cy Coleman, Betty Comden and Adolph Green musical, On the Twentieth Century. The underappreciated 1978 production garnered Tony Awards for Kevin Kline and John Cullum and made a star of Judy Kaye after Madeline Kahn left the show after only a couple of months. The role of Lily Garland would be a perfect fit for Chenoweth as opposed to her previous stint in the revival of Promises, Promises. Let’s hope they can cast strong male leads in order to give the musical its proper balance.

  4. War Horse, my choice for Best Play, has not been receiving a lot of love from the early theater award groups. Jerusalem seems to be the leading choice. However, many of these esteemed bodies have cited War Horse for special citations to recognize the noteworthy achievement by the creative team behind the production. My question – if these groups are so enamored with War Horse why not just acknowledge it as the Best Play? Maybe it’s just too commercial for their tastes.

  5. Wonderland is the first new spring musical to post its closing notice, delivering its last performance on May 15th. While the show is flawed it does have some merit—especially its eclectic score. Unfortunately, in today’s hard economic reality, unless you are a certifiable hit or receive respectable reviews a show’s longevity is slim. In the days when attending a Broadway show—play or musical—didn’t cost a king’s ransom a show like Wonderland could carve out a decent run. It’s too bad we now have a feast or famine state of affairs.

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