Right here’s a blast of heart-warming good cheer on a chilly winter day — “Loopy for You” is headed again to Broadway.
Susan Stroman, who directed “The Producers” and “The Scottsboro Boys,” is staging a workshop of the pleasant 1992 musical later this month. The forged consists of Laura Osnes (“Grease”), Tony Yazbeck (“On the City”) and Rachel Dratch (“Saturday Evening Stay”). Rachel Bloom, creator and star of “Loopy Ex-Girlfriend,” will likely be alongside for the experience as properly.
Producer Joey Parnes, minting cash from “Meteor Bathe” with Amy Schumer, has been assembly with theater homeowners with an eye fixed to opening “Loopy for You” within the fall.
That is an inconceivable revival. The thought got here to life virtually a 12 months in the past as a one-night live performance to have fun the 25th anniversary of the present. No one was paying a lot consideration to it till that evening, when the present introduced down the home. There have been rumors Broadway manufacturing was within the works, nevertheless it took time to type out the actors’ schedules.
However as a manufacturing supply says, “We knew it was going to occur ultimately. It was simply a lot enjoyable.”
“Loopy for You” was one of many first jukebox musicals, though I don’t assume anyone was utilizing that time period again in 1992. Author Ken Ludwig original a jaunty script round a few of George and Ira Gershwin’s greatest tunes: “Somebody To Watch Over Me,” “I Obtained Rhythm,” “Embraceable You,” “Good Work If You Can Get It.”
The unique director was Mike Ockrent, who’d had a giant hit within the 1980s with “Me and My Lady.” Ockrent employed a then-unknown choreographer — Stroman — to work on the present. She got here up with dances that despatched critics right into a frenzy of enjoyment.
Calling her “a rare choreographer named Susan Stroman,” Frank Wealthy within the New York Instances mentioned her expertise evoked the work of Fred Astaire, Busby Berkeley and Hermes Pan.
Stroman and Ockrent fell in love throughout “Loopy for You” and ultimately married. He died of leukemia in 1999 simply as they have been about to enter rehearsals for Mel Brooks’ “The Producers.”
Stroman was devastated. However Brooks urged her to get again to work, asking her to take over the route of “The Producers.” The present went on to win a report 12 Tony Awards in 2001.
Stroman’s terrific dances for “Loopy for You” are nonetheless in place, though I hear she’s arising with many recent concepts for the revival. She could regulate the “Slap That Bass” quantity. Within the authentic, refrain women grew to become basses “plucked” by male actors. It was a showstopping second — I keep in mind it vividly — however I don’t assume you will get away with it within the age of “#MeToo.”
Higher to reverse the roles and have the ladies pluck the fellows.
However I’ve little question Stroman will work her magic. She’ll maintain the spirit of an awesome musical comedy whereas making some changes for a brand new period.
Broadway got here off a record-busting vacation season solely to fall off a cliff.
Receipts totaled $50 million between Christmas and New 12 months’s, bringing the 12 months’s whole field workplace gross to $1.7 billion.
However the chilly snap and the blizzard have all people in a panic.
“The numbers are going to be brutal this week,” one veteran producer says.
Properly, don’t cry for me Argentina. Broadway will survive. Now that the vacationers are gone and everybody’s hunkering down, it’s simpler to attain a ticket to absolutely anything, besides “Springsteen on Broadway.”
I’m bored with Broadway being just for the 1 p.c. If it takes a brutal winter to make theater accessible for everybody, then, as the nice Sammy Cahn wrote, “Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.”