All in Music That Makes Me Dance
As the Broadway musical Waitress enters its third-year on the Great White Way, producers have a bit of exciting news to go with the anniversary. Sara Bareilles, the singer-songwriter who wrote the musical’s Tony-nominated score, will make her return to Broadway in the role of Jenna, a role she has tackled before. For the limited engagement that lasts from January 7 to February 3, 2019, the multi-platinum-selling Grammy and twice Tony-nominated singer-songwriter will be joined by Tony-winner Gavin Creel (Hello, Dolly!) in the role of Dr. Pomatter.
Imagine setting out to write a musical based on one of the most celebrated screenplays of all time, only to find that you cannot secure permission to use it, but you can get the rights to write a musical based on the short story that that screenplay was based on. Are you confused yet? This is essentially what happened when Sidney Michaels (book), Charles Strouse (music) and Lee Adams (lyrics) encountered when writing the musical Applause. Applause is based on the 1946 Mary Orr short story “The Wisdom of Eve”, which was, of course, the basis for the 1950 20th Century Fox film and Academy Award winning Best Picture All About Eve.
When a musical flops, it hurts, especially when it has a score that is fun and infectious, superseding a troubled book that doesn’t quite create the structure needed to make the whole piece come together. The 1958 Broadway musical Goldilocks was one of those ill-fated musicals, possessing a parade of delightful ditties sandwiched into a plot that just refused to work.
One the most beloved performers of the Broadway musical is the late, great Mary Martin. Mary Martin possessed a lovely, distinctive voice, a coquettish smile, and a persona that evoked optimism and warmth. The actress enjoyed a long career on the Broadway stage that spanned three decades, winning four Tony Awards throughout that time, including one for spreading Annie Get Your Gun to the country while the original production performed in New York. Rivaled only by Ethel Merman as one of Broadway’s most iconic talents, Mary Martin’s legacy lives on in our memories of great musical theatre experiences. Today, we take a look at the Broadway musicals that were brightened by her presence.