The lights are going out on Broadway as show after show closes: Hairspray, Young Frankenstein, and Boeing-Boeing got zapped right around the new year, and somewhere in late 2008 Rent, Cry-baby, and Xanadu also flamed out. The relief is stupendous. With any luck the whole theatrical profession will be kaput by 2010. Just think of all that wonderful darkness and silence where the revival of Grease used to be!
They got this-here Depression on, see, and it’s making audiences realize, belatedly, that theater sucks, and Broadway theater sucks worst of all. Suddenly, $200 to see Shrek, the Musical at the Broadway Theater seems like real money, even for the fatheads who would ever consider seeing Shrek, the Musical. And it’s the same $125 – $275 per ticket price range for Jersey Boys at the August Wilson Theater, Blue Man Group at Astor Place Theater, or if you want to get serious, Hedda Gabler at the American Airlines Theater, starring Mary-Louise Parker from Weeds.
Don’t think they’ve got better things planned, either, to combat this new Depression-era sanity currently killing Broadway. No. Here’s what they’re hoping to foist on a grim public in the Dust Bowl season to come: Catch Me If You Can—the musical! Spiderman—the musical! 9 to 5—the musical! It makes you realize we may have judged the auto industry tycoons too harshly.
Can’t you just see the lights flickering out and the inky black night settling over all the theaters in the land? Gosh, this is a great Depression!
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