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Thoughts on the Fall Season


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Every paper, magazine, blogger, and website has been writing about the upcoming season, so there's really no need to introduce anyone to "what's coming". But here are my general thoughts: I think we're in for a very interesting fall.


With the advent of the Premium Seat, suddenly producers are able to earn back their money in a very limited time...(with the right draw of course,) and this Fall seems to have producers coming out of the woodwork to showcase major talent for a short run and (hopefully) a quick buck.


Just curious: Has anyone ever purchased a premium seat? Was it worth it? I am not being antagonistic with that question...but I am usually happy with a $49 seat in the last row. (And appalled that the last row is now costing me $49 when I recall it being $8.50.) Thank heaven for tdf, audience extras, and play-by-play.


Back to the season. I have buckled down and paid full price for a number of shows this year, which is rare for me. Last year I only paid full price for four shows: Twelfth Night, All the Way, Raisin in the Sun, and Hedwig. This year I have all ready paid full price for four shows: It's Only a Play, The River, The Elephant Man, and Side Show.


It's Only a Play is getting great word of mouth and is going to be a mega-hit. The cast is illustrious and appealing and apparently the show is a delight. I don't see it until mid-October, and I cannot wait.


The River is Hugh Jackman in a thriller imported from London, and there's very little word...no one wants to unveil the Spoiler. I think it very interesting that Jackman who could choose any proven vehicle is coming in a small, unknown piece...at what I believe is the smallest house on Broadway.


The Elephant Man with Bradley Cooper got great reviews in the Berkshires two summers ago, and I love the supporting cast as well. Again, a small theater, and I am looking forward to this, as I missed the Billy Crudup revival in the early 90s.


Side Show is a score I love, and I couldn't get to DC to see it this spring. I hear the book is much better, and I cannot wait to lose myself in this. I do suspect that there will be cheaper tickets available once all the rabid fans have bought their tickets, so I may try to see it again, amortizing my expenditures. LOL


Other shows I all ready have tickets for: Curious Incident of the Dog in Nighttime...had an $89 offer, and we got great seats. I saw the NT LIVE broadcast of this last Fall and am very excited to see it in person. I also greatly enjoyed the book.


Delicate Balance: again, there was an $89 offer for this, and I think the cast is wonderful. Albee is always interesting, even when he's not very good, LOL (The Death of Bessie Smith, anyone?) and I don't remember much of the last revival with Elaine Strich.


I see Country House with Blythe Danner next week...bought on tdf for $40. We'll be in the back of the mezz, but who cares. MTC usually does a great job with new works, and always recruits great performers.


Real Thing is part of my Roundabout subscription. Love Maggie Gyllenhall and Euan McGregor. Did anyone else have the LP (Yes, an LP of a PLAY!!!) of the Glenn Close/Jeremy Irons version?


Disgraced is a very interesting piece that was Off-Broadway two years ago and it won the Pulitzer. The original performer was so good, I am sad they've replaced him, but this is being done by LCT and as a member my ticket was $52.


I saw both This is Our Youth and You Can't Take it With You with tickets from tdf last week. I will YCTIWY more in the appropriate spot later, but Youth was only interesting. Cera plays...well, Cera...but he does it very well. I found the girl interesting...my companion hated her. There was an interesting piece on her on CBS Sunday Morning last week. And I find Kieran Culkin pretty uninspiring. When I saw the original with Josh Hamilton and Mark Ruffalo twenty years ago, I found the play itself lacking although I thought the dialogue was very strong and natural. It showed Lonergan as someone to watch. I have enjoyed some of his later plays more...and this endeavor would be better suited to off-Broadway...still, clearly, an early work. Andproducers cannot charge $150 for an off-Broadway presentation.


Friends saw The Last Ship in Chicago. I don't have any great need to run out and buy a ticket. Hopefully early previews will come up on the clubs.


On the Town is a delightful show, and the three young male leads are adorable. I saw this in the Berkshires last summer, in a tiny venue and am nervous how it will translate to the ENORMOUS Lyric (formerly the Foxwoods). I expect lots of opportunity to get a cheap seat in the back....


Love Letters. I saw this at the Promenade in the late 80s about 10 times. Tickets were about $25, and the stars came out then like they are now. My favorite pairing was real-life husband/wife Robert Foxworth/Elizabeth Montgomery. I don't know that I will plunk down $100 to see two folks sitting on stage, reading their lines at the Brooks Atkinson. It's a charming piece, and if the right match came up, I surely would...wish that Carol Burnett was doing it with Alan Alda. Or Diana Rigg was doing it with just about anyone else.


Thoughts on the Fall Off-Broadway to come.


Happy September, (and Fall theater-going) fellows!

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I have purchased a premium seat but only when I'm taking a guest as a treat and/or I really want to see it and with my knee problems must have an aisle. I use TDF, all discount sites and a friend has Theater Mania Gold so some shows for $4.00.


Honeymoon In Vegas had great buzz at the Papermill Playhouse and is expected to be a very big hit. The new lead actor in Disgraced is the man who played the role in London. Saw it at Lincoln Center and it's very good.

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For the more adventurous there's Flemish director Ivo van Hove's deconstructionist production Bergman's Scenes From A Marriage at the New York Theater Workshop.

A bit avant garde but an interesting director who does very good work. I've seen his Streetcar Named Desire and The Little Foxes and admire his work a great deal.

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First, in regards to The River, the Circle in the Square theater has 776 seats, and is not the smallest house on Broadway. The Helen Hayes has 597, Samuel J Freidman has 650, the Booth 766, and The American Airlines has 740. Many times theaters are chosen, not only because they are available, but what the director and the scenic design team have in mind on how they best want to present their production. Hugh Jackman is so rich he is one of the fortunate people who can pick and chose what he wants to do, so it's nice to see him challenge himself with new productions.

Yes, I have on many occasions bought a full price ticket. There are many shows that open and do not offer discounted seats because audiences are willing to purchase full price seating. Why wait in the hopes that you'll save $20 bucks on a ticket when you can have the peace of mind that you have you ticket and the date/time is set.

The two guys sitting next to me at It's Only A Play had flown in from the Houston area for a 50th birthday celebration. They had already seen Beautiful, Cabaret, and were attending several other high priced Broadway productions. I don't think they used discount codes, coupons or were willing to stand in the middle of Times Sq on the TKTS line in hot humid weather.

There are some productions this fall that interest me and others, not so much. Either I've seen them before or I'm just not interested.

On The Town is interesting. It's headed into the cavernous Foxwoods theater (The Lyric, or whatever it's called these days on 42nd St after Spidey Man took off) 1938 seats to fill each and every performance. This will be a monumental task, so be prepared for deeply discounted seats and a brief run, as their are no marquee names associated with this classic show. It's worth going to for the music and choreography.

I echo your sentiment...come to NYC and go to the theater! Enjoy!

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