by a pair of Vaudeville comedians
just as the Vaudville era was era was coming to a close, the musical revue Hellzapoppin'
became a runaway smash hit, and for a time, was the longest running show on Broadway.
It was a crazy quilt of frequently updated comedy and musical bits stitched together, featuring risque humor, fourth-wall breaking audience participation, skits abandoned halfway through, dwarfs, pigeons, clowns and Adolph Hitler with a Yiddish accent. [more inside]
posted by empath
on May 15, 2011 -
From Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the creators of South Park
, and Robert Lopez, of Avenue Q
, comes the new Broadway show "The Book of Mormon."
"tells the story of two young Mormon missionaries sent off to spread the word in a dangerous part of Uganda" while gently (and no so gently) lampooning organized religion and traditional musical theatre. The entire show is now streaming on NPR.
Songs are extremely Not Safe For Work.
posted by ColdChef
on May 9, 2011 -
On March 14th, the 26th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
will add 5 new performers to the growing list of well-known musicians. As previously discussed
, the 2011 inductees are Alice Cooper, Neil Diamond, Dr. John, Tom Waits and Darlene Love
. Though the last name may not be as famous as the four fellows, the chances are you know her voice, from Monster Mash
, Rockin' Robbin
, or Da Doo Ron Ron
. Except her name wasn't credited first on any of those recordings, if it was mentioned at all
. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief
on Feb 18, 2011 -
This week, the world will finally get its first look at
Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark. But the most expensive musical in Broadway history has already had an epic run—battling bankruptcy, broken wrists, unruly technology, and one comic villain disguised as a Post columnist. And at the center of it all, perched over her “God mike,” is the relentless and inventive Julie Taymor. (previously)
posted by Joe Beese
on Nov 23, 2010 -
Defamation by Twitter
Broadway actor Marty Thomas has filed papers in court asking that the identify of the "bwayanonymous" Twitter account (cache
) be revealed, after the account made a post alleging Thomas has crabs.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero
on Oct 14, 2010 -
Articles on the failed musical Dude
cocreator Gerome Ragni
. Where to start? Well, there is this summary of the disaster
by the New York Times, which is just mind-boggling: "He also made demands, phoning Adela Holzer at 2 A.M. to say he wanted a hundred butterflies let loose into the audience before each performance. No? Well then what about having a couple of oinking pigs and chickens run down the aisle at intermission?" [more inside]
posted by Astro Zombie
on Jun 20, 2010 -
Actor, Playwright, Artist, Comedian, Magician, "Man of A Thousand Voices" (including Mighty Mouse,) "Beloved Herring Maven"
Mr. Ira Stadlen (Stage name: "Captain
" Allen Swift) has passed away at the age of 87
. Throughout his career, Mr. Stadler voiced characters in more than 30,000 television and radio commercials, as well as cartoons such as Underdog
, Tom and Jerry
and Diver Dan
, but some might remember him most as the man who saved Howdy Doody
. His nephew has posted a remembrance
on his blog, which includes a link to a "novelty 45" mp3 recording of Swift's "Are You Lonesome Tonight
." [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Apr 28, 2010 -
Broadway, block by block, 1899. (SLNYPL)
"A 19th century version of Google's Street View, allowing us to flip through the images block by block, passing parks, churches, novelty stores, furriers, glaziers, and other businesses of the city's past."
posted by GrammarMoses
on Feb 15, 2010 -
Only 325 days until Broadway's Hilton Theater hosts the first preview of Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark
, a $40 million musical directed by Juliet Taymor with music and lyrics by Bono and The Edge of U2. Investors hope it will fare better than another
big-budget pulp adaptation.
posted by Joe Beese
on Feb 25, 2009 -
Broadway's original Effie White
, Jennifer Holliday, has been very open about how haunted
she felt during the production of the Dreamgirls movie. In particular she was hurt when, without permission, her own singing voice was used in a theatrical trailer to promote the production that had completely shut her out. Yesterday at the BET Awards she was finally given some overdue recognition and invited to join Jennifer Hudson onstage for a duet of the song she made famous
. You may have heard the song a hundred times, but try to make it 101. 'Cuz seriously, the girls can sing. Previously.
posted by miss lynnster
on Jun 27, 2007 -
"Someone in a Tree" -- an incedibly rare video from the original, 1976 production of "Pacific Overtures."
I grew up listening to an L.P. of these same people perform this same song, but I've never before seen them perform it. I grew up in Southern Indiana, so actually seeing a Broadway show was out of the question. But I loved this song, and -- years later -- I read that it was Stephen Sondheim's favorite of all the songs he ever wrote. Today, I found this video on YouTube and it was like finally seeing someone after being blind for years. I still have chills running up and down my spine. Also: Sondheim forum
, online journal
, and various gems (and bombs) on youtube
-- including the man
himself teaching a master class and this
12-year-old's spirited performance!
posted by grumblebee
on Apr 28, 2007 -
... puts guests in the limelight in a way that will surpass their wildest dreams. Guests can walk in the door for dinner and walk out the door a star"
In the age of American Idol, why go to see a show on Broadway, when it's your birthright to be a show on Broadway, complete with your own professional
back-up singers and dancers?
posted by stagewhisper
on Mar 17, 2007 -
You can keep your Simon, Randy and Paula, I'll take Barbara Cook any day.
Here is the Broadway legend's two hour master class (it's a REALTIME video from
The New York Public Library) and it'll teach you more about singing, phrasing and music than every moment of American Idol combined. At least watch the first 20 minutes, you'll be amazed.
posted by adrober
on Apr 10, 2006 -
Dancer Sues Movin' Out
for breach of contract and sexual harassment she claims to have suffered during her run in the National Touring company of the Broadway hit. In an interesting move, the dancer, Alice Alyse
, has created a lawsuit website
to explain her side of the story. Perhaps she'll win, but will she ever work again?
posted by ThePinkSuperhero
on Mar 23, 2006 -
"When stewardesses were sexy and the world was sexist"
is the tagline of this years-in-making musical by Suzy Conn, who also runs the blogway baby
musicals log (which talks about this musical quite a bit). It's meant to be based around the early 1960's, when airlines were truly a luxury, not unlike a sea cruise or a first-class train ride pre-Amtrak. (The website spends some time going on about Braniff International
, and it's worth it to check out the history of that airline. This is also laid out on top of the era of Women's Liberation,
although it does so using the aesthetic of 1960's music and phraseology, which was, basically, designed by male-dominated hollywood.
For everyone who sits in the cheap seats, if you let the flash animation at the beginning of the site load, it plays the entire opening title song for you. Hey, free show!
posted by jscott
on Apr 12, 2005 -
We're Knights of the Round Table
whene'er we're able.
We do routines and chorus scenes
With footwork impeccable.
We dine well here in Camelot.
We eat ham and jam and Spam a lot
We're Knights of the Round Table.
But many times we're given rhymes
That are quite unsingable.
We're opera mad
We sing from the diaphragm a lot.
In war we're tough and able,
Between our quests we sequin vests and impersonate Clark Gable.
It's a busy life in Camelot.
posted by terrapin
on Mar 11, 2005 -
The Brill Building
, located at 1619 Broadway in the heart of New York's music district, is a name synonymous with an approach to songwriting that changed the course of music. Housing legendary songwriters like Carole King, Jerry Leiber, Neil Sedaka, and Burt Bacharach, the Brill Building created some of the greatest hits
of the rock'n'roll era
. [more inside]
posted by rocket88
on Dec 29, 2004 -
No longer happy and peppy.
But still bursting with love, maybe. Broadway will honor the late Tony Randall tonight by dimming its lights
at 8PM EDT. For those of us who can't stand pits, pits, pits in our juice, juice, juice, always remember:
The world is a circus if you look at it the right way.
Every time you pick up a handful of dust, and see not the dust but mystery, a marvel, there in your hand.
Every time you stop and think, "I'm alive. And being alive is fantastic."
Every time such a thing happens, you are part of the circus of Dr. Lao.
posted by Oriole Adams
on May 18, 2004 -
Axing Foreign Acts
— Now that immigration control falls under the rubric of Homeland Security [+
], ticket sales should pick up for Broadway shows: foreign culture exchange is
on the wane
down the drain, says the Voice's Don Mattingly this week. Students
, too. Bureacratic transition pains or police-state policy? More info? Paranoid surmises?
posted by hairyeyeball
on Apr 10, 2003 -
Battle of the Blurbs.
The producers of the badly reviewed Broadway show "The Smell of the Kill" have pissed off Times critic Bruce Weber. Good strategy or Bad Karma? Well, at least they didn't make up their own critic.
posted by adrober
on Mar 30, 2002 -
The Show Must Go On.
Is it appropriate for Broadway shows to be up and running again? True, the Mayor prescribed it as a way to show how unaffected we are by terrorism, yet I couldn't imagine sitting in the audience at The Producers, laughing at "Springtime for Hitler," mocking the foolishness of that regime of hatred when the product of another regime of hatred lays smouldering just a few miles to the south.
posted by adrober
on Sep 20, 2001 -