The Playgoer: Today's Roundup

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Monday, December 07, 2009

Today's Roundup

-Steven Suskin, writing in Variety, shows how despite the glories of the full orchestras on display in current revivals South Pacific, West Side Story, and Finian's Rainbow, the musicians-minimum on Broadway is still a shrinking phenomenon. This most affects the repertoire of "golden age" musicals, of course. But even a union man like me has to wonder if the theatre needs to adapt to new composers not necessarily writing in the old "symphonic" mode any more and being ok with smaller ensembles. Then again, I do hope the money will still be there for revivals and those who want to write (and orchestrate) in that tradition.

-Washington Post documents the significant impact of the Obama stimulus spending on the health of the arts--at least in the DC area. (Woolly Mammoth, for instance, got to re-hire their outreach director.)

-Attention Tennessee Williams fans: look for one of the more obscure Christmas releases this year, The Loss of a Teardrop Diamond--a unproduced screenplay Williams wrote in the 50s, now a minor motion picture starring Bryce Dallas Howard and Ellen Burstyn. Check out the trailer....While they are still crediting Williams as sole screenwriter, I wonder if it's been worked on. (At least, I'm sure he wouldn't have approved of the uplifting Forrest Gump-music or the "In a world..." voice over.)

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