Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Split Decision on Bess's Broadway Run?

The New York Post has a blind source column about the inevitability of the Broadway transfer of the American Repertory Theatre production of Porgy and Bess.

Michael Riedel reports that the Gershwin estate will have a big say.

For me, the more interesting part of the article is the power play between critics and producers/investors.

This "Porgy and Bess" mess is indeed a tricky one for the estates, the producers and the investors.

On the one hand, they'll be ceding too much power to Sondheim and the critics if they scrap the show.

"They'll do real harm to the title," says a veteran producer. "If the estates do not approve the Broadway run, they're basically saying Steve Sondheim is right and the only way to do 'Porgy and Bess' is to do the original -- a full-length opera."

Other producers believe the show should come in just to spite the critics.

"OK -- it's not my money -- but if they close, they're giving the critics way too much power," one says. "And we've finally gotten to a point where the critics don't necessarily have make-or-break power in New York anymore."

Apparently, Ben Brantley's New York Times review was a little unexpected for some involved in the production.


Justin said...

Hello! Loved reading various posts on your blog---just discovered it today.

I'm actually a theatre producer/director, putting up a production: BOSTONblogologues in March 2012. If you have any interest of your blog being a part of it and would like more information please let me know. You can email me at:

Thomas Garvey said...

New York producers may have noted, however, that it looks like the run at the A.R.T. has entirely sold out . . .