Current Happenings

Current Broadway ShowsWith just days away from the close of the 2013 Tony Award deadline, iWeiss would like to ask–how many of these productions have YOU seen?

Time sure does fly and, after 30 years of iWeiss business, our bloggers took a look at the current Broadway productions in order to offer a few historical facts that you may find interesting the next time a cynical colleague tells you that theatre is a dying art form.

…Go ahead…iWeiss has your back!

The longest running musical on Broadway, The Phantom of the Opera, opened in 1988 with an average ticket price of $38.55.  It has since gone on to win 7 Tony Awards and has clocked over 10,500 performances in its 25 year run while The Lion King, another NYC staple, has had over 20 major productions worldwide. Lion King’s NYC production, hitting over 6,400 performances, is the fifth longest-running musical and had a top ticket price of $80 in 1997!  Has that kind of inflation hit your personal wallet yet?  If so…do you need any drapes?

Still not a believer that audiences still crave the “jukebox musicals?”  Tell that to Rock of Ages still running at a minimal 90% house capacity each week, or to Jersey Boys and Mamma Mia, rounding out the three longest running jukebox shows in history.  Will this season’s Motown give them a run for their money?

And just when you thought that Spiderman: Turn Off the Dark was going to have its last laugh, the production continues to outlive and surpass our joke repertoire, even if it took them 182 preview performances–the longest in history.

Each season we always see a number of revivals, and it’s always refreshing to see the good ones come back.  Pippin was one of the first of what many academics call “concept musicals.”    What’s exciting is that this new production, 40 years after the original’s premier, still proves to be refreshing and new. And 65 Years after The Big Knife’s original production (1949), we still continue to find a connection with the characters on stage.

Is it possible that the trend of “dysfunctional family” plays are on their way out?  This year’s The Assembled Parties, which opened to great critical reviews across the board, shows there’s still a long way to go.  Will your family be next?

Yeah, yeah, yeah…movie-to-stage adaptations seem like they’re overdone and finished, right?  Not if you look at the most current theatre lineup!  Last year, we had Newsies and Once  face off as the two most probably Best Musical candidates.  Gossipers also say that the 2013 season’s best musical category will also include Kinky Boots, another film adaptation and Big Fish having opened in Chicago just last month, is bound for Broadway this Fall.

We also have two more exciting new productions on this season’s agenda, I’ll Eat You Last (Bette Midler’s return to Broadway, last seen in 1980) and Matilda which seems to be taking the Broadway naysayers by storm…check them out before they sell out!

And as if this season couldn’t be any more varied, we have Annie and Macbeth playing within one avenue of one another…let us know which one you think may be scarier.

Have a great time this season.  Remember, iWeiss was there, and we look forward to working alongside you in the next 30 years to come!

Written by our very own Chris Layton

Celebrating 25 “Phantom” Years

January 27, 1988 – Opening Night – Phantom – The Beacon Theatre is transformed – the entire orchestra is platformed over into an elaborate party space and dance floor and at the back of the stage – Phantom of the Opera starring Lon Chaney is playing.  After a trip to London to study the show –the biggest drapery show in decades, we spend months building the show in quarter scale models and enjoy numerous afternoons and dinners with designer Maria Bjornson going over details.  An exciting premier and a box office success led to iWeiss building Phantom Los Angeles, National Tour 1, San Francisco, National Tour 2, Canadian Tour, Phantom Las Vegas and many repeats.  How wonderful, 25 years later, to still be making phantom drapes.  Got to work with Fred Gallo, Neil Mazzella, Joe Patria, Dana Kenn, Bobby Ferhribach, Tim Abel, Jake Bell, John Paull, Alan Wasser & Alan Williams, Cameron Macintosh – all still loyal friends 25 years later. The crew at the Majestic as well as all the road crews are all a great bunch of theatre folks.  So I look forward to Jan 26, 2013 – The Majestic Theatre – Broadway New York City, the 25th Anniversary of Phantom of the Opera – Who would have thought ……………David Rosenberg, President, iWeiss Theatrical Solutions

 

Visit http://www.iweiss.com/portfolio/phantom-of-the-opera-25th-anniversary.html to view a photomontage of our drapery work over the years.