Monday, May 07, 2007

Broadway's painfully awkward phase

An August Wilson play opens on Broadway and to "reach beyond the typical Broadway theatergoer -- who is a 49-year-old white woman, according to a recent Broadway trade association study -- the producers engaged an array of marketing specialists." I would have thought the timely plot, involving a successful African-American man running for political office, and the Wilson name would spell such certain success that ad agency efforts wouldn't be needed. I would have been so wrong. Because what stage productions really need today is a girl theme: "the theater's hot audience of the moment: tween and teen girls....Broadway, long worried about its graying audience, is in hot pursuit. A good deal of the credit for this nascent relationship goes to possibly the least-appreciated breakthrough hit of the past decade: Wicked." Diane DeGarmo in Hairspray? Fantasia in Color Purple? Suddenly it all makes sense. I don't know though. Young girls -- and I speak from experience here -- aren't always so bright. Do we really want to turn Broadway over to the Ashlee Simpson fan base?

Thank God for Vegas. I guess.


James-H said...

Diane? Not fat enough. "NEXT!"

Irene Done said...

That's why, starting next month, she's being replaced by Ruben Studdard.