Saturday, October 25, 2008

Broadway feeling the pinch?

By any measure, Broadway's Spring Awakening has been an enormous success. And yet I have to say that I would have expected a far longer run:
They don’t do sadness, not even a little bit. But it’s hard not to feel sad for the members of the cast of the Broadway show “Spring Awakening,” who learned on Thursday that it is scheduled to close Jan. 18. Adapted from the 1891 Frank Wedekind play of the same name, “Spring Awakening” combined a youthful cast with a pop score written by Duncan Sheik and Steven Sater and choreography by Bill T. Jones to yield a 21st-century hit. The show won eight Tony awards in 2007, including best musical, original score, choreography and direction of a musical (won by Michael Mayer); the cast recording also won a Grammy Award. “Spring Awakening” (the cast members Alexandra Socha and Hunter Parrish are above) will have played 29 previews and 859 performances at the Eugene O’Neill Theater, preceded by an Off Broadway run at the Atlantic Theater. The closing of “Monty Python’s Spamalot” has also been scheduled for Jan. 18.
Hairspray is also scheduled to close, on Jan. 4. All shows go down eventually, but I have to wonder what kind of effect the economic downturn has had on these announcements. And will a long-term recession--- with the resultant decline in people's discretionary spending--- have a major impact, not just on shows getting produced, but on the types of shows that get produced? 

1 comment:

The Neologistocrat said...

Good question! It would be interesting to see whether a recession (or Allah forbid, a depression) would push people into going from watching persistently happy shows about 70% of the time to watching them 100% of the time.