BWW Book Club: Read an Excerpt From Michael Riedel's RAZZLE DAZZLE: THE BATTLE FOR BROADWAY - Chapters 19, 20 & 21

By: Jul. 20, 2020
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BWW Book Club: Read an Excerpt From Michael Riedel's RAZZLE DAZZLE: THE BATTLE FOR BROADWAY - Chapters 19, 20 & 21

BroadwayWorld Book Club is officially off and running! Or should we say, reading!

Our current BroadwayWorld Book Club selection is Michael Riedel's Razzle Dazzle: The Battle for Broadway.

Recap of Chapters 19, 20 & 21

If you would like to join the discussion, you can find a round-up of excerpts and fun facts from chapters 19, 20 & 21 of the book below:

Excerpt from chapter 20:

Lena Horne, triumphant on Broadway with her show Lena Horne: "The Lady and Her Music," presented the award. Backstage during the commercial break she said, "I hope they wrote the winner in big letters because I'm not going to put my glasses on on national TV." The winner, she was told, was typed in small letters. "That's not going to work," she said. One of the accountants who tallied the votes said he would open the envelope, write the winner in big letters, and put it in a fresh envelope. "Oh, never mind," Horne said. "Honey, I know how to read the world 'Dreamgirls.'"

The Tony's were live again. Horne walked out from the wings, resplendent in a flowing gown. "This is a pretty theater," she said. "Full of all the sounds of this gorgeous music. I had a ball here in Jamaica. And now the award for Best Musical of the season. The nominees are: Dreamgirls, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Nine, and Pump boys and Dinettes."

There wasn't a sound in the Imperial.

As she opened the envelope, she said, "I hope the printed this big enough to read without my glasses. The winner is"- she looked up, surprised- "Nine."

The left side of the theater erupted. As the Nine producers bounded down the aisle, Shoenfeld turned to his wife, Pat, and said, "I just can't believe it."

Michael Stuard thanked Sam Cohn, "our honorary producer." Alex Cohen cut to Bernie and Betty Jacobs. Bernie looked grim. He was not clapping. Betty clapped once, turned her to her husband and shrugged.

Excerpt from chapter 21:

The Shuberts controlled Cats in North America, but Lloyd Webber and Mackintosh had the rights for every other market. At the time, producers of popular Broadway shows licensed those shows to local producers in other countries, believing that a local producer knew his audience better than a Broadway producer ever would. But there was much demand for Broadway musicals outside of America, England, and Japan (the Japanese loved Fiddler on the Roof and A Chorus Line). The idea of a global hit did not exist. Cats would change that. They saw how popular the show was in New York and London with tourists who didn't speak English. Cats should play anywhere in the world, but to do so effectively, it would have to be the same production that worked so well on Broadway. Lloyd Webber and Mackintosh would see to it.