Drabinsky's Offer to Help FINIAN'S RAINBOW Rejected by New York Producers
As previously reported, according to the Toronto Star, Broadway producer Garth Drabinsky is hoping to make a comeback this year despite his 2009 felony conviction.
Drabinsky and his production partner Myron Gottlieb were both convited on fraud and forgery charges last March. Drabinsky was sentenced to four years on one fraud charge and seven years on the second, to be served concurrently. The New York Post and Thestar.com now report that Drabinsky is currently "out on bail, awaiting the results of an appeal, which could take close to a year to be resolved." Despite his felony conviction and jail sentence, Drabinsky has already spent the first few weeks of 2010 trying to ignite a comeback while free on bail.
Garth Drabinsky's first order of business involved tying to rescue the ailing revival FINIAN'S RAINBOW, which played its final Broadway performance last night, January 17th. According to Thestar.com, Drabinsky's plan for saving FINIAN'S RAINBOW included "his own marketing savvy plus a $1.5 million [check] from one of his new partners to finance a major new ad campaign." Reportedly, the most lucrative aspect of his offer was that "Drabinsky would secure the right to produce [FINIAN'S RAINBOW] in Toronto and tour Canada."
The producers of FINIAN'S RANBOW rejected Drabinsky's offer, but TheStar.com reports that he "did manage to get his foot in the door and win a serious hearing from at least one key member of Finian's producing team."
According to the article, Drabinsky also has plans for both a remount of BARRYMORE and a "projected all-black revival of his Tony-winning but money-bleeding 1993 Broadway musical KISS OF THE SPIDER WOMAN."
To read the rest of the article and find out more about Drabinsky's proposed comeback plan in Thestar.com, click here.
Before being sentenced to prison last year, Garth Drabinsky and his partner Myron Gottlieb ran the Production Company Livent Inc., the company they would go onto "systematically [manipulate] the books for" leading to their felony convictions.
In the 1980s, Livent obtained the exclusive Canadian rights for Andrew Lloyd Webber's THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, and Drabinsky's company restored the historic Pantages Theatre in downtown Toronto (now known as the Canon Theatre) for the opening in September 1989.
PHANTOM was a cash cow for Livent throughout the 1990s, and Livent quickly brought in another Andrew Lloyd Webber musical, JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT for an extended run with Donny Osmond heading the cast.
Livent's most crucial role came in developing new musicals for Broadway. Drabinsky was instrumental in reactivating the musical KISS OF THE SPIDER WOMAN after an unsuccessful try-out in Purchase, NJ. The producer brought the creative team to Toronto and mounted a summer long run of a revised version of the show opening in June 1992. After Toronto the musical moved to London, it finally arrived on Broadway in May 1993, where it won the Tony Award for Best Musical of the season.
A few months after that win, Livent opened a well received new production of the classic musical SHOW BOAT at the then brand new North York Performing Arts Centre in Toronto. The show received sensational reviews and a year later opened on Broadway winning the 1995 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical.