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THE WIZ 2024 Broadway Cast Recording Thread
 Jun 14 2024, 04:33:00 PM
The singing is great. The arrangements go a bit off the rails towards the ends of songs for my taste, although it kind of works in "No Bad News" which is supposed to be over-the-top.
 May 26 2024, 10:13:41 PM

She doesn’t sound as bad as I expected. I don’t think her voice is “shot.” She sounds pretty much exactly how you’d expect her to sound 30 years older than her Phantom years. I’ve always thought her sound was not really produced with proper operatic technique. Her voice would never carry unamplified in an actual opera house, even in her prime, for example. Her technique is underpowered in terms of breath support and, as a consequence, doesn’t hav

Audra McDonald-led GYPSY for 2024-2025 Season?
 Jan 6 2024, 11:58:13 AM

ErmengardeStopSniveling said: "MikeInTheDistrict said: "I'm out-of-the-loop. What wrong with Trevor Nunn? I think he'd actually be a decent choice for a revival like this?"

I feel his musical output as of late in London and NY have been stodgy and overlong...Bridges, Night Music, Fiddler.

I'd personally prefer someone who would lean into the musical fable element and find new colors that we haven't seen in a GYPSY revival befor

Audra McDonald-led GYPSY for 2024-2025 Season?
 Jan 6 2024, 10:40:45 AM

ErmengardeStopSniveling said: "Musicaldudepeter said: "It's Trevor Nunn directing."

I hope this is a bad joke!


I'm out-of-the-loop. What wrong with Trevor Nunn? I think he'd actually be a decent choice for a revival like this?


Would love to know how people reacted to the 1999 Disney Annie when it originally aired
 Nov 27 2023, 09:51:46 PM

^You’re right. Don’t know why I mixed those two character names up, lol. I edited my post. 

Would love to know how people reacted to the 1999 Disney Annie when it originally aired
 Nov 27 2023, 09:44:41 PM

As others said, it was pretty well received, as was the 1997 Cinderella. As with that movie, however, there were some subsequent grumbles by racists on places like IMBD or (anyone remember those old forums?) about Audra McDonald’s Grace marrying Warbucks in the 1930s, but thankfully most people did not agree with those complaints. 

I loved the arrangement of “Tomorrow.” It has a touching, mournful quality that is lacking in t

The Wiz returning to Bway in 2023 after National Tour
 Oct 28 2023, 04:45:24 PM

I honestly think anyone attempting a new production of this musical should be required to go back and start with Geoffrey Holder's original production and, especially, his original costume designs and George Faison's original choreography. They are products of their times and would need to be updated, but they should be used as a starting point, IMO, because every subsequent attempt has been watered down and worse in comparison.

 Oct 9 2023, 07:26:22 PM

Would it be logistically possible to bring this to Broadway? The impression I've gotten is that it has become cost prohibitive to run productions like this here in the U.S. I could see it maybe imported by an opera company or Lincoln/Kennedy Center, though.

FUNNY GIRL National Tour - Katerina McCrimmon as Fanny!
 Sep 9 2023, 11:54:07 AM

Phillyguy said: "She sounded great, although I wonder if more people now are familiar with how Lea sings it, given the amount of exposure over the last decade and the new cast recording."

It's possible, though Lea's Glee-era performances were more Babs-inflected than her current take. I still think most people over 40 would probably be more familiar with Barbra's rendition from the movie.

FUNNY GIRL National Tour - Katerina McCrimmon as Fanny!
 Sep 8 2023, 02:37:05 PM

Is it me, or does McCrimmon sound like Barbra? Or, at least, more like Barbra than the four Broadway Fannys, based on what I've heard. That could either be a good or bad thing, but probably good. I think tour audiences will be expecting to hear someone who sounds like Barbra, and will be pleased with her voice.

Isaac Butler NYT piece:
 Jul 21 2023, 04:28:16 PM

WhoCouldBeBlue said: "Why should Broadway be bailed out when every other dying business in America has to suck it up by itself and either solve the problem or close. Broadway is no different. If the public can’t support it, the public obviously isn’t interested. Scale Broadway show down to live within their means. Quit crying for a frigging handout. Be adults… if you can’t pay your bills, go get another type of job. Lazy people want government handouts, working people make it work!"

Europe has a healthier and more robust infrastructure for the arts than the U.S. because they fund the arts at a much higher level, so it's not as if this is some out-there idea that government should invest more in the arts. German, for instance, spends 20 times more than the U.S. on arts funding. Furthermore, if wealth is not circulating in a given economy (as it's not doing here in the U.S., becoming increasingly more concentrated at the top), it is not lazy or unreasonable to ask the government to recirculate some of that wealth to go to better and more urgent use than languishing in a hoarder's trove in Switzerland.

That said, I think a government bailout of theatre in the absence of other reforms would be a temporary solution, merely kicking the can down the road in terms of the future viability of the arts. I'd rather see it go directly to working and middle class households, who can then decide what to with their money. This would support not just a single industry, but other languishing ones as well.

Contrary to your assertion that "if the public can’t support it, the public obviously isn’t interested", I think you would be surprised how much the public would support theatre if they had the money to do so, and the emotional bandwidth left over to think about anything more than how to make ends meet. I think the feeble appetite for anything more challenging or substantive than jukebox musicals is more a sign of people's economic stress and political burnout than an indication that people simply don't like challenging art.

Isaac Butler NYT piece:
 Jul 21 2023, 01:28:39 PM

I think people are blaming the content of theatre a bit too much.

The main issue is that the cost of attending the theatre has skyrocketed within the last two decades while wages and purchasing power for the average American have stagnated since the 1970s. This isn't just a problem for theatre. The movie industry is also suffering due to streaming and the cost of movie tickets making it far less appealing for moviegoers to spend their money on anything but the highest level of spectacle or guaranteed value; small budget comedies have essentially disappeared from theatres in recent years and gone straight to streaming, which is having its own problems with sustainability. People have also written similar articles about the music industry. Retail is collapsing in the age of Amazon. The cost of food is going up at the highest rate in decades. The cost of rent and homes has ballooned, and everyone from Gen Z to Boomers are having trouble keeping a roof over their heads.

If people had the disposable income to spend on theatre/movie/concert tickets, they would do so. But we're reaching a point where the cost of producing the arts is outpacing the public's ability to support them.

Lea Michele as Fanny - Funny Girl
 Jul 17 2023, 10:58:49 AM

Given the current climate of antisemitism (and resurgence of such tropes in QAnon and similar circuits) and reactionary "anti-woke" sentiment, it's probably just as well this story hadn't broken out into the general public consciousness because it could easily have evoked even uglier backlash. 

Red Alert! - Dr. Strangelove West End Autumn 2024
 Jul 17 2023, 10:25:39 AM

Iannucci is a perfect fit for this. I'm not familiar with Foley, but the work he's done previously also seems like a good fit. I can't wait to see who they get for the cast.

Andrew Lloyd Webber on Musicals and Political Correctness
 Jun 19 2023, 01:35:06 PM

Parker and Stone also made changes to Book of Mormon after the George Floyd protests, in collaboration with the Black cast members. These are two creators who have built their entire career mocking political correctness, and yet they were demonstrating a level of responsiveness and accountability to their Black cast and audience members that ALW has not demonstrated interest in with these comments.

Andrew Lloyd Webber on Musicals and Political Correctness
 Jun 16 2023, 02:41:48 PM

Honestly, I don't think it's so much an issue of a person writing about someone from another country per se, but rather this particular person who, instead of taking pause to consider the reason he may have been advised against writing about this specific subject and using it as an opportunity to go forward with the project with greater sensitivity and due diligence, complains about "political correctness."

There are reasons why people from marginalized g

The Wiz returning to Bway in 2023 after National Tour
 Jun 14 2023, 12:23:15 PM

I'm most concerned about the choreography. A big part of what made the original production work, and which no revival seems to have managed to equal, is George Faison's choreography. The dancers representing the Yellow Brick Road and the "Ease on Down" shuffle that conveyed a sense of movement through Oz (while acting as a funky visual counterpoint to the iconic image from the 1939 film of Judy Garland & Co. skipping down the road) is a masterpiece. Honestly, I can't imagine anything to improve upon this:


Nicole Scherzinger to star in West End Sunset Boulevard at the Savoy
 May 21 2023, 01:02:13 PM

I wish it were the amazing Mazz Murray. IMO, the best fit for this role working currently:



PBS Great Performances - Celebrating 50 Years of Broadway's Best
 May 13 2023, 11:27:09 AM

Dollypop said: "I enjoyed the show but heard a whole bunch of flat notes throughout the evening. It was understandable with some of the vintage performers but some of the younger folks on that stage weren't hitting their vocal marks either.

Oh, and there wasn't enough of Max Clayton.


There was a lot of questionable riffing going on. I think it would have been better had most of the performers just sung the songs straight. 

Broadway actors with odd voices
 Mar 24 2023, 11:49:18 AM

I wonder if the decline in "unique" voices coincides with the "prettification" of Broadway. Not only are unique voices trained or weeded out of their uniqueness in the BFA circuit, but people with distinctive looks as well. I look at the headshots of most Broadway casts, and they are 90% extremely conventionally beautiful/handsome actors. The beauty standards are quite high and I wonder if that dissuades people who might not fit the mold (not being conventionally pretty, o

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