Wednesday, January 31, 2007

A Revival for Yum-Yum?

Two articles in the last couple of weeks have referenced the Broadway Play, Under the Yum Yum Tree.

The Village Voice's Michael Feingold, in a nasty takedown of Theresa Rebeck's latest, mentions how her dramas belong in the pantheon of light and breezy fare that used to blow in and out of broadway barns regularly:

Such comedies were a staple of commercial-theater life in that ancient time, usually bearing twinkly titles that flashed the audience a hint of spicy doings to come: The Tunnel of Love, The Marriage-Go-Round, Champagne Complex, Under the Yum-Yum Tree—they werelegion. Audiences giggled in delight at their lukewarm double entendres and comically interrupted tête-à-têtes; critics usually groaned through them. (One critic wrote about Under the Yum-Yum Tree, "I longed for somebody to get to bed with somebody so I could go home.")

Then Geoff Edgers' article about the recent exodus of Robert Woodruff from the ART has this quote from a board member:

"I'm not interested in writing checks for a theater that nobody comes to," says Weisman. "I'm not asking them to do 'Under the Yum Yum Tree.' If I go to six or seven shows a season, it's OK to do 'Orpheus X' -- which I happened to love -- but you can't make a season of a 'Romeo and Juliet' that's inaccessible and shows like 'Dido, Queen of Carthage' [productions from 2005 and 2006] unless you have some kind of sugar daddy."

Under the Yum Yum Tree opened in 1960 and starred Dean Jones. Its original production only ran about 173 performances, but it was enough to spawn a movie version. The playwright, Lawrence Roman, also penned P.S. I Love You.

If I were the next Artistic Director of the ART, I would immediatley slate a weird updating of this play.

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