Comscore

West Side Story original production theater switch

sundayclothes2
Featured Actor
joined:4/10/09
I was looking at the ibdb for the original production of WSS and noticed the production switched from the Winter Garden to the Broadway Theatre from March to May of 1959 and then switched back to the Winter Garden where it continued to run for a little over a month before closing.

Anyone have any insight into the logic behind this?
Smaxie Profile Photo
Smaxie
Broadway Legend
joined:9/26/05
Didn't it move to make way for Juno? I know West Side Story moved back after Juno closed in two weeks.
Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end: then stop.
madlibrarian
Broadway Star
joined:8/15/06
Yes. After Juno folded, West Side Story had to exit the Broadway because Gypsy was booked. So... back to the empty Winter Garden!
sundayclothes2
Featured Actor
joined:4/10/09
But what if Juno hadn't folded in 2 weeks? The Broadway would presumably still be booked with Gypsy. So would it just have been a limited run at the Broadway?
WOSQ
Broadway Legend
joined:7/18/03
West Side Story would have looked around and probably picked up an interim booking or something else would have closed. Also at some point West Side Story played the Alvin.

Until about 1970 it was proportionately much cheaper to move a show and also much easier technically. Moves could be done in 2 days with planning.

For instance: Annie played 2 interim bookings (the Anta and the O'Neill) after it was booked out of the Alvin and before the Gershwin opened up; Purlie played the Winter Garden for 3 months between the Broadway and the Anta; My Fair Lady had at least one interim between the Hellinger and the Broadway.

Purlie opened in March 1970 as an interim booking. The Broadway had been promised to Gantry which had a deal to move in April from the Abbott/54th Street because they had to vacate since it was being torn down. Purlie would have had to scramble for a house somewhere, but Gantry flopped out, and Purlie turned out to be a sleeper.
"If my life weren't funny, it would just be true. And that would be unacceptable." --Carrie Fisher
madlibrarian
Broadway Star
joined:8/15/06
If Juno had been a hit, WSS would have found someplace to go. The O'Neill was an odd choice for a big musical like Annie but it was what was available at the time. My Fair Lady spent time at the Broadhurst between Hellinger and Broadway.
bwayphreak234 Profile Photo
bwayphreak234
Broadway Legend
joined:7/4/10
I have been reading Jennifer Tepper's new book, and it amazes me how often shows moved around. Slightly off topic, but didn't La Cage and All Shook Up switch theatres before even starting performances?
"There’s nothing quite like the power and the passion of Broadway music. "
theatreguy Profile Photo
theatreguy
Broadway Legend
joined:7/31/03
That's true, bwayphreak. Here's the Playbill story:

http://www.playbill.com/news/article/87000-La-Cage-Falls-Into-Marquis-in-November-2004-All-Shook-Up-to-Shake-the-Palace-Come-Spring-2005

And the Broadway used to be where shows went to play a few months (or just weeks) before finally closing. Funny Girl, Cabaret, Mame, The Wiz, I Can Get It For You Wholesale, Fiorello, The Music Man, The Most Happy Fella and My Fair Lady all closed at the Broadway after opening in other theaters.
Jonwo
Broadway Legend
joined:3/16/06
42nd Street moved twice due to Cats and Phantom taking the Winter Garden and Majestic. Didnt Chicago have to move to the Shubert due to the Richard Rodgers being booked for another show?
madlibrarian
Broadway Star
joined:8/15/06
Chicago had to exit the Rodgers for Side Show.
Smaxie Profile Photo
Smaxie
Broadway Legend
joined:9/26/05
Steel Pier, actually.
Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end: then stop.
madlibrarian
Broadway Star
joined:8/15/06
OOPS! Right you are, Smaxie!

 
Advertisement Advertisement