You can’t have it both ways…

June 15, 2009

I’ve been watching a lot of documentaries about Broadway… Broadway musicals specifically.

And I’ve heard these laments about how shows stay around forever instead of turning over every year and how there aren’t singing choruses and dancing choruses (separately) and on and on…

I know from the documentaries that theater has changed but I think some people have missed that the fact that it costs SO much money to mount a production means that show have to stay around at least 2 or 3 years to even break EVEN.  Scary, isn’t it.

If you want affordable theater… you won’t find it on Broadway.

That’s not to say that Broadway is nothing but Cats and Lion King.  Because it does have fun, new stuff.  It just comes up from other places.  It’s cheaper to mount a production in London or (and I’m assuming here) San Francisco.  Or there are shows like Avenue Q that come up from OFF Off Off Broadway and make it to the Broadway stage by sheer force of will.

But it costs SO MUCH MONEY that the shows have to last, people have to be willing to buy the tickets… and that’s not going to change.

And on the topic of ticket prices – the reason the Producers decided to raise the price was because that was the price that scalpers were getting.  They just took scalpers out of the equation.  Was that a good thing to do for themselves?  Probably.  Was it good for theater going?  I’m not sure.  But it’s done.  They could drop ticket prices.  Maybe right after they drop CEO and Vice Chancellor salaries.

In the mean time… art moves on, like it always does.  It grows and evolves.  And while I wish they would sing out instead of relying on microphones and that there was an orchestra in the pit… I accept that things have changed.  But I will still spent money to experience live theater because it’s worth it.

Night.

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