re: Is "Parade"moving to Broadway?
Last Edit: Chazwaza 12:49 pm EST 11/10/22
Posted by: Chazwaza 12:31 pm EST 11/10/22
In reply to: re: Is "Parade"moving to Broadway? - Dale 07:50 am EST 11/10/22

I have heard it is intending to transfer several times, and that it was intending this before they even started performing.

I have to say - I love this show, and I think it's a hard sell at any year -- but I do not think the leads being played by Jews will do anything to help it with audiences (only with headlines - but it being Ben Platt, famous actor, will be far more important than that he is Jewish) and I do not think they've "improved the material" since the original, and I do not think the material was why the show wasn't a hit originally, it was the subject matter. In fact, I do actually think the changes made are lateral moves... I have seen 4 productions of the show since the London rewrites were done, including the Donmar production in LA, and I saw the original Prince production, and the material worked better in its original form and no one's production has been as good as Prince's, if you ask me, flaws and all (and no one has ever given me as thrilling and surprising a Court Room section as Prince did). Why so many productions insist on both not having a tree on stage (a central statement and clearly built into the show's fabric from the lyrics to the structure) and ALSO not replacing it with any other clear directorial vision (using newspaper clippings isn't a vision) baffles me every single time I see a production.

And I'd say winning Best Score and Best Book absolutely made it a hit at the Tonys, not to mention having 2 absolute front runners for Best Actor and Best Actress, the clear favorites to win besides the huge heavy hitting stars that took those Tonys that year. Brent Carver gave one of the best performances I've ever seen in a musical, but he had recently won a Tony already (for Spider Woman) and was up against the famous favorite of stage and movie stardom (and immensely talented) Martin Short who won for Little Me... and Carolee was also extraordinary and lost to Bernadette Peters for Annie Get Your Gun (a bizarre win, which should have waited until her turn in Gypsy 4 years later... but I think the feeling was that she was one of the last bankable broadway stars who didn't leave for movies/tv, and she was overdue for a 2nd win).
(I'll say, I do not know how Rufus Bonds Jr didn't get a Featured Actor in a Musical nomination that year.)

I agree it doesn't look good when an original musical loses to a revue... but Parade was not a hit at LCT, and the crimes of Garth had sunk its future before it could have one, so it had been closed for over 3 months before the Tonys came. It's very uncommon to give Best Musical to a show that is already closed, especially when it had a 2.5 month run. If LCT had opened the show later in their season so it could have opened just barely in time for eligibility, I do think it would have had a significant chance of winning that year over Fosse, not even because everyone loved it but because it was a new musical (not a revue) with an amazing score and directed/lead by Hal Prince.
But also the show was meant to run longer... Garth Drabinsky's financial crimes blew up just in time to sink Parade. I'm not saying it was a hit, like Ragtime, that shuttered after proving there was a sustained audience for the material, but I will say that 16 year old me loved the show, as did my sibling (far less included toward musicals than I was), and my Jewish grandparents (whose tastes leaned more toward Camelot and Guys & Dolls) loved it and were sure it would be a hit. I think the show had more life in it and more audience appeal than it is given credit for.


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