Show Summary West Side Story transports William Shakespeare’s timeless romantic tragedy Romeo and Juliet to the streets of Manhattan in the 1950s. Instead of warring Montague and Capulet families, there are warring gangs of teenagers, the Jets and the Sharks. Instead of young lovers Romeo and Juliet, we have Tony and Maria, two teens who are torn between ethnic loyalty and their intense love for each other. The Broadway musical’s beloved score includes such songs as “Tonight,” “Maria,” “Somewhere,” and “Something’s Coming.”
Broadway Review This exciting new production of the Golden Age favorite features an energetic young cast and faithfully re-creates Jerome Robbins’ iconic choreography and Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim’s extraordinary score. The production is directed by the show’s scribe, Arthur Laurents, who has also added a twist (and some extra authenticity) by having the Sharks speak and sometimes sing in their native Spanish tongue.
So we recently reported, fearless readers, on the fact that the pedestrian plaza in New York’s Broadway area is going to stay a pedestrian plaza for the foreseeable future, as per Mayor Bloomberg’s announcement last month. Reaction to the plaza has been mixed—drivers, especially cab drivers, loathe it for the traffic snarls it offers–but many tourists like it and gravitate to the area. In addition, store and restaurant owners in the area are pleased with the extra income derived from curious passersby who stop to shop, eat, and spill over into the areas with tables on nice days. The area is a huge draw with its plethora of theaters and restaurants, huge splashy shops, ranging from the M&M store to Sephora to Toys R US, and its larger-than-life ads and billboards.
One thing pretty much everyone agrees on, however, was that the dingy metal lawn chairs and café tables were an eyesore.
Now, however, the city is launching a design competition (for people who live or work in New York) to redesign the squares in light of the permanent installation in 2010. The competition covers the five pedestrian plazas that stretch from 42nd to 47th Streets along Broadway. Designs are due by April 16, and the winner receives $15,000. Applications are available at wnyc.org. If you’d like to share your ideas with the public at large, you can post them on WNYC’s flickr page.
Whether you love or hate the plaza, at least you won’t have to look at the lawn chairs forever.
Show Summary A very unusual nanny (who just so happens to be practically perfect in every way) helps two rambunctious children connect with their distracted and distant parents – and she shows them a bit of magic along the way. Disney’s Mary Poppins, now a Broadway musical, is based on the beloved P.L. Travers stories and the classic Disney movie of the same name.
Broadway Review Fans of the books will be happy to see that this live action Broadway adaptation of Mary Poppins includes characters and adventures that the popular Disney film left out. Fans of the movie, on the other hand, may miss its simplicity (as well as a few of the songs). But everybody is sure to appreciate the wonderful cast and impressive sets. Be aware that there are a few darker moments in the show that might scare smaller children.
Show Summary Set in the beautiful Greek isles, the Broadway musical Mamma Mia incorporates nearly two dozen songs by international pop sensation ABBA into its lively story about soon-to-wed Sophie, her free-spirited single mother Donna, and three men from Donna’s past — one of whom, Sophie hopes to discover, is her father.
Broadway Review Mamma Mia has become a global smash since its 1999 London debut, and its biggest fans are usually the middle-aged crowd who fondly remember the disco days of ABBA. Women in particular enjoy watching fun-loving Donna and her two wacky best friends reminiscing about the wild days of their youth, when they were in a singing trio. Since the show’s plot is a bit thin and the tone decidedly silly, the upbeat musical Mamma Mia is best appreciated as a big Broadway-style ABBA concert.
If you’re planning to celebrate Christmas Day by seeing a Broadway or Off-Broadway show, bear in mind that the theater schedules are quite unusual over this holiday. Some shows have altered performance schedules for the holiday, and many shows don’t have a performance at all today, so be aware of this if you’re thinking of last-minute Broadway ticket buying. However, for the adventurous, this could be a good opportunity to snag some great deals at the box office. Broadway shows frequently hold back premium seats and then release them at regular price at the last minute. Good luck, and Merry Christmas!
‘Tis the season to see holiday-themed theater. For decades, the ultimate Christmastime show has been the Radio City Christmas Spectacular, which continues to bring eager audiences in by the droves to Radio City Music Hall at Rockefeller Center to see the world-famous Rockettes. But in recent years, other holiday shows such as a stage version of Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas and a new musical of A Christmas Carol have turned up in New York City in November and December. This year we have Cirque du Soleil’s winter wonderland of a show, Wintuk, and at the Marquis Theater on Broadway Irving Berlin’s White Christmas has returned for another limited holiday engagement. These shows are closing by New Year’s or shortly thereafter, so if you want to get into the holiday spirit Broadway-style, you should act fast. If you miss them, they may very well be back – and, if not, they will have likely been replaced by something similarly jolly.
He may have survived any number of obstacles to win the heart of his true love, Princess Fiona, but New York’s Broadway stage seems to have been unconquerable—the announcement was made by the producers yesterday (Oct. 21) that Shrek would be galloping across his swamp no more—“Shrek the Musical” will end its run on Jan, 3, 1010.
The musical, which encapsulates several of the plots about the ogre and his exploits from the “Shrek” movies, will have had 441 performances and 37 previews at the Broadway Theatre when it closes.
The musical received eight Tony Award nominations in 2009 (and won one for Best Costume Design in a Musical). Although it had a very strong holiday season last year, “Shrek” never received either the critical or word-of-mouth encouragement it needed to stay afloat. The musical received only lukewarm reviews, at best, when it opened, and with the economy in freefall, parents are being more discerning about what kind of family entertainment they choose and where to put their dollars.
Insiders–and those who simply read the newspaper–may have figured out recently that something was up–a near frenzy of special promotions have been advertised or hinted at lately.
Is there life for Shrek, Fiona, Donkey and the rest after New York? Maybe Midwesterners will prove to have different tastes: A limited national tour of “Shrek” will run from July 13-Sept. 5, starting at Chicago’s Cadillac Palace Theatre.
Get $59 Avenue Q Tickets CODE IS: AQTIX0618 Avenue Q Discount Ticket Code on Broadway in New York City
$59.50 – $79.50 on performances These prices apply to performances through September 11th 2009 and are available on select orchestra and front mezzanine seats.
CODE IS: AQTIX0618 Prices are $59.50 Monday through Thursday, and Sunday $69.50 Friday evenings/Saturday and Sunday matinees $79.50 Saturday evenings
Tickets available at the box office, BROADWAYOFFERS.COM or call 212-239-6200 and use code AQTIX0618
Offer valid for select seats through 09/11/09. Offer subject to availability and prior sale; not valid on prior purchases or on the first 10 rows of the Orchestra; cannot be combined with any other discounts or promotions. All prices include a $1.50 facility fee. Limit 19 tickets per order. All sales final. No refunds or exchanges. Phone and Internet orders are subject to standard service fees. This offer may be revoked at any time.to availability and prior sale, may be revoked at any time.
Save Up To 45% on Tickets CODE IS: PHNYTX9 Phantom Of The Opera Discount Ticket Code on Broadway in New York City
35-45% on select performances These prices apply to performances through September 5th 2009 and are available on select orchestra and front mezzanine seats.
CODE IS: PHNYTX9 Prices are $66.50 Monday through Thursday – Regularly $105.50 $71.50 Friday evenings/Saturday matinees Regularly $115.50
Tickets available at the box office, BROADWAYOFFERS.COM or call 212-239-6200 and use code PHNYTX9
Subject to availability and prior sale, may be revoked at any time. Limit 19 tickets per order. All prices include a $1.50 theatre restoration fee. Not valid for Saturday evening performances. Not valid on previously purchased tickets or in combination with any other offers. All sales final; no refunds or exchanges. Phone orders subject to service fees. Expires 09/5/09
Unlike last October when Katie Holmes had the spotlight all to herself as she made her debut in “All My Sons,” this fall season of Broadway shows features a star-studded lineup with some major movie stars set to take the stage. The convergence of so many celebrities on Broadway in the fall season is merely a coincidence and producers say there was no premeditated push to get more celebrities in Broadway shows.
So far the summer season attendance has been down 8.4 percent compared to last summer’s season. The large amount of star-power is definitely expected to boost ticket sales, which should of course help New York City’s economy. The roster begins with Daniel Craig and Hugh Jackman in “A Steady Rain” coming in September, followed by Jude Law in “Hamlet” starting shortly after. Sienna Miller will debut in “After Miss Julie,” James Spader in “Race,” and Julia Stiles and Bill Pullman will star in “Oleanna.”
Hollywood stars often seek out stints on Broadway in New York City as a means for bolstering their credibility as an actor, even if there is no need to prove themselves. For instance, Julia Roberts made her Broadway debut in “Three Days of Rain” in 2006. Though her performance was panned by critics, the play still sold exceptionally well. While a famous name may not always ensure a shows success, it does create buzz and attract interest in Broadway, which is much needed now.