Home Theater Broadway: After Tony Awards, Born Yesterday May Be Gone Tomorrow

Tonight: the Tony Awards on CBS. Don’t miss ’em. You’ll see the best of the past Broadway season. But once the parties and fun are over, get ready for closing notices. “Million Dollar Quartet” has already announced it’s closing today.

I’m told that the highly praised revival of “Born Yesterday,” with Jim Belushi, Robert Sean Leonard and breakout star Nina Arianda, is likely to be the first casualty. Producers have already discussed this with the cast, I’m told. The play took in only $216,000 last week.

“Born Yesterday” is not alone. “Bengal Tiger,” with Robin Williams, is already set to close on July 3rd. The revival of Tom Stoppard‘s “Arcadia”-also so good–will go, too, next Sunday.”The Normal Heart”–which should not be missed–ends next month, as do “The Motherf—- in the Hat,” “The Importance of Being Earnest.” and  John Leguizamo’s “Ghetto Klown.”

Right now the best deal on Broadway has to be “The House of Blue Leaves” with big stars Ben Stiller, Edie Falco, and Jennifer Jason Leigh. The show, ending its limited run on July 23rd, is only selling at 69% of capacity. It’s frequently for sale at half price at the TKTS booth on 47th Street. That closing date is still a way off, and seats have to be filled.

August is going to be a quiet month on Broadway. With all these shows closing, though, it may be a good sign for “Baby It’s You,” the fun musical about Florence Greenberg and how she discovered the Shirelles and other groups. We’ll cross our fingers.


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  1. It’s unfortunate that “Baby It’s You” has received lukewarm reviews. The original songs are wonderful, and the intrigues and ripoffs of the record business of the 1950s and 60s are fertile ground for examination; sad that the tradition continues today as the show is enmeshed in lawsuits by the artists. It was a time of songwriters producing marvelous work for singers to deliver. Many great groups were forgotten because their versions were too gritty for the pop charts.

    One of the biggest hits of the Shirelles, “Dedicated to the One I Love,” originated with the great 50s R&B group, the “5” Royales and its guitarist Lowman Pauling. The music of the “5” Royales was covered Ray Charles, Mick Jagger and James Brown. Rockaeology at http://bit.ly/fxSYOl has the story of how Pauling’s pioneering use of intentional feedback and echo influenced guitarists like Eric Clapton.

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