14 Facts About Broadway musical


Broadway musical moved to New York in 1753, performing ballad operas and ballad-farces like Damon and Phillida.

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Broadway's first "long-run" musical was a 50-performance hit called The Elves in 1857.

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In 1870, the heart of Broadway musical was in Union Square, and by the end of the century, many theatres were near Madison Square.

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Theatres arrived in the Times Square area in the early 1900s, and the Broadway musical theatres consolidated there after a large number were built around the square in the 1920s and 1930s.

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However, smaller vaudeville and variety houses proliferated, and Off-Broadway musical was well established by the end of the 19th century.

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Trip to Coontown was the first musical comedy entirely produced and performed by African Americans in a Broadway theatre, followed by the ragtime-tinged Clorindy: The Origin of the Cakewalk, and the highly successful In Dahomey .

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Lightnin' was the longest-running Broadway musical show until being overtaken in performance totals by Abie's Irish Rose in 1925.

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Florenz Ziegfeld produced annual spectacular song-and-dance revues on Broadway musical featuring extravagant sets and elaborate costumes, but there was little to tie the various numbers together.

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The majority of Broadway musical theatres are owned or managed by three organizations: the Shubert Organization, a for-profit arm of the non-profit Shubert Foundation, which owns seventeen theatres; the Nederlander Organization, which controls nine theatres; and Jujamcyn, which owns five Broadway musical houses.

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Broadway musical once had many homegrown stars who committed to working on a show for a year, as Nathan Lane has for The Addams Family.

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In 2010, some theater heavyweights like Mr Lane were not even nominated; instead, several Tony Awards were given for productions that were always intended to be short-timers on Broadway musical, given that many of their film-star performers had to move on to other commitments.

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Minimum size of the Broadway musical orchestra is governed by an agreement with the musicians' union and The Broadway musical League.

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Some Broadway musical shows are produced by non-commercial organizations as part of a regular subscription season—Lincoln Center Theatre, Roundabout Theatre Company, Manhattan Theatre Club, and Second Stage Theater are the four non-profit theatre companies that currently have permanent Broadway musical venues.

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Many Broadway musical theatres offer special student rates, same-day "rush" or "lottery" tickets, or standing-room tickets to help ensure that their theatres are as full—and their grosses as high—as possible.

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