Wednesday, January 11, 2006

The Lulla-buy of Broadway

A friend of mine was telling me she just managed to score tickets for a hot Broadway musical. They were over $100 each, and she felt lucky to get them. I've read that total ticket sales for Broadway shows were $825 million dollars in 2005. When tourists come to NYC, it's the top thing most people want to do. They stand in line for hours at TKTS trying to get discount seats. And for the shows that are really popular, you have to buy tickets months in advance if you can manage to get them at all.
Now I enjoy anything on stage to some degree-- there is something about the whole experience, the lights, the stage set, the music... of course it is "magical," as people often say. But a lot of plays never sell out (the best ones do). The ballet and other dance events don't sell out. The opera doesn't sell out. And all of these things are expensive, but not as expensive as Broadway musicals. And frankly, I don't really get it. Why are so many people enamored this particular form of on-stage entertainment? The visuals might be fun but the singing is so labored and coarse, it's like the vocal equivalent of tossing the caber. And the stories don't seem very original these days-- they keep rehashing shows that have been around forever, throwing together "jukebox" shows, or making musicals out of things that were probably best left in their original form, be it book, movie, TV or whatever.
But I suppose I shouldn't complain so much. If there were no Broadway musicals, what would happen to the tens of thousands of starry-eyed former drama club kids who take our orders in restaurants?

1 comment:

Caitlin said...

I don't really get it either (former non-starry eyed drama club kid speaking) unless of course you are talking about Spamalot. I could see making some sacrifices for that one. ;)