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The Season Ahead

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The Season Ahead

 

By Bill Schmalfeldt

 

You know what?  If what my wife and I saw last night at the John Golden Theatre is any indication, this might be quite a fun season on Broadway!

 

First of all, let me apologize for breaking with convention here.  I know you're traditionally supposed to hold on to your reviews of a show until after the show has officially opened.  And I would be glad to do so, except for this fact…

 

I LOVED "AVENUE Q!"

 

It opens tonight (July 31) and the notices will be posted tomorrow.  Those who are paid to see these things and write critical reviews will have their say in the Friday morning papers.  I dare any one of them to say anything negative about this fetching, sophisticated, uproariously funny production.  I DARE them!

 

And I actually went to this show last night, prepared to NOT like it.  Despite what I'd been told by friends and colleagues who had seen it during its off-Broadway run at the Vineyard Theatre, the whole idea of puppets and people co-existing seemed a bit too "precious" to me.

 

I was wrong!

 

It all rang SO TRUE!  (Who among us hasn't been visited on numerous occasions by the "Bad Idea Bears" – in whatever form they may have taken in your personal menagerie of imaginary and/or drug-induced animals?)

 

Oh yeah, one of the biggest rounds of applause in the show comes toward the end during the song "For Now" when the characters are running down a list of things that are "temporary."  Our president's name is included.  The house came down!  Of course, this was on the same day that he said gay marriage should remain illegal, so one would guess El Presidente wasn't the most loved name in the news that particular e'en.  (I mention that just to jab at a nice fella who wrote me a poison e-mail after my political comment in the previous column.)

 

So put me down in the "Loved It" category for this one.  For the rest of the season?  The shows fall into three basic categories.

 

LOOKING FORWARD TO…

 

"Wicked" – opening Oct. 30 at the Gershwin.  It's the Wizard of Oz story from the Wicked Witch's point of view.  Interesting concept.

 

"Little Shop of Horrors" – Opening Oct. 2 at the Virginia.  Hunter Foster was great in Urinetown.  Kerry Butler was great in everything she's ever done.  Will they mesh?  Wezel see!

 

 

I'LL SEE IT, BUT I'M NOT PARTICULARLY EXCITED BY…

 

"The Boy From Oz" – Opening Oct. 16 at the Imperial.  I guess I wasn't much of a Peter Allen fan, and when I see Hugh Jackman, I'll be thinking "Wolverine."

 

SINCE I GET COMPED AND IT WON'T COST ME ANYTHING, I'LL SEE IT, BUT IF I HAD TO PAY MY OWN WAY, THERE AIN'T ENOUGH WILD HORSES TO DRAG ME TO…

 

"Taboo" – Opening Nov. 13 at the Plymouth.  When Boy George sang "Do You Really Want To Hurt Me?" my shouted response to the radio was always "YES!"  And I haven't mellowed much since the 80s.

 

 

IN OTHER NEWS…

 

Are you in New York?  Wanna see me act like an idiot?  Click this link…

 

http://www.theatermania.com/content/show.cfm?int_show_id=22280

 

I am a member of this group of morons, and would love to see you in the audience.

 

 

For more information about XM Satellite Radio, go to www.xmradio.com.

 

For more information about "On Broadway, XM-28" click http://onbroadway.xmradio.com.

 

Listen to Your Jovial Impresario, Broadway Bill Schmalfeldt, weekdays from 10a-2p Eastern on America's only LIVE, nationwide satellite radio show tune request show – "Demand Performance".

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"Broadway Bill" Schmalfeldt is the program director of XM Satellite Radio's On Broadway channel. A native of Clinton, Iowa, Bill began his broadcasting career in 1977. Since then, his career has taken him three-quarters of the way around the world, including a tour as a Navy broadcaster in Yokosuka, Japan and aboard the USS Midway.

Before coming to XM Satellite Radio, "The Jovial Impresario" was program director and morning talk show host at WGUF, Naples, FL. When not employed as a broadcaster, Bill also worked as a newspaper columnist and editor and as a long-haul truck driver. His hobbies include acting and singing in local theater venues. Visit onbroadway.xmradio.com for more info.


 
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