WestCoast Entertainment has announced its 2009-10 Best of Broadway Spokane season.
Fiddler on the Roof, with Topol
The Chad Mitchell Trio
Nov. 11-Dec. 6
The Lion King
Feb. 11-14, 2010
April 8-11, 2010
Little House on the Prairie: The Musical
Bobo must pronounce himself underwhelmed. Chad Mitchell and Lion King, been here before, and recently. Little House the Musical I don't know -- and rather liked the song sung on the trailer, projected on a large screen for subscribers to see on the INB stage this afternoon -- but it's another example of dredging up every known baby boomer TV show and movie and musicalizing it just to make a buck because boy, there sure are a lot of middle-aged folks with disposable income these days. Fiddler is one of my most beloved musicals - the end of the golden era, the guts to end unhappily, nearly every one of the first-act songs a classic -- and it'll be fun to see Topol in the role (though he does turn 74 in September). Avenue Q is the highlight of today's announcements. (And Lion King, if you haven't seen it -- Disney and Bobo may have stomped too hard on the publicity, but it's still a very good show. I just wish it were returning about five years from now and not already.)
Note that late Sept./early Oct., along with Jan., March and May 2010 are all open, so we're likely to hear some more announcements. There's hope.
The advertising campaign that we'll see more of ("Have you been ... amazed ... excited ... fulfilled today? [Actually, no, I haven't.] Experience Broadway. See a show!") is a textbook case of marketing to theater newbies as opposed to veteran audience members. (I'm sure I read somewhere that -- no, I heard Ben Cameron say this last year, the former head of TCG -- that if you want to draw in new audiences, you emphasize how emotionally moving a theater experience can be -- whereas, if you're chasing after theater aficionados' money, you underscore performances, actors, sets -- how these upcoming shows fit into the tradition. The idea is that rare theatergoers don't much care about all that crap, having little experience to contextualize it with.)