Sunday, March 23, 2008

You Could Be Dancin', Yeah...

I don't have much to say tonight (I am a little exhausted), but I do want to talk about Dancin'. I'm surprised not more has been made of this huge step into commercialism by Roundabout.

I know previously I've discussed my support of Roundabout doing random money-making things. Because, in general, I think people that put on big shows should be entitled to make money to support them. Roundabout has many times previously taken a show that commercial producers just couldn't manage to get on and done it. One past example is The Pajama Game. Another example is the upcoming Pal Joey. But Dancin' is a little different.

Back in the fall when news surfaced of this Dancin' it was to be a commercial Broadway revival with a Toronto tryout. For whatever reason, that plan did not work out. So now we have a Roundabout production at Studio 54 produced in association with Greg Young, Elaine Krauss, Dancap Productions and Richard Levi. It is of course standard procedure to list the commercial producers, as these are the people that are hoping the show is a huge hit and they can move it and capitalize on its hit status. So, the deal is, for those of you who know nothing about the industry, it takes a lot less money to get something on at a non-profit because of a lot of factors, especially LORT actor contracts which allow for lower salary minimums. Like, they knew Love Musik was iffy commercially. So the commercial producers put it on in association with MTC in the hopes that people will love it and they'll be able to move it. If it is not well-loved (which was the case with Love Musik), the commercial producers lose a lot less money than they would have if they put it directly in the Belasco. But this is all usually (with some exception) done behind-the-scenes. It's not something you would know unless, well, you knew.

The Dancin' announcement has something markedly different about it-- the statement "that "A national tour of DANCIN' will open in the fall of 2009" following the Roundabout mounting. That makes it clear that this is a commercial endeavor right from the get-go. Of course, I'm sure if it is a bomb, the tour will be scrapped. But its announcement says something.

9 comments:

RLewis said...

When my high school drama group came to nyc, we students got to pick one broadway show to see that was not previously booked. I picked Dancin'. Loved the poster and still have it. It's a good variety show, but depends so much more on the performers than a book musical. It could run, but doesn't have a shot in hell at being the next big thing. If an n-f-p isn't the venue for it, then an idol-type tv show is probably the best place. ya don't have to be a b-way baby to see the rough road ahead for this one.

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