Video Flashback: RENT Celebrates Its Groundbreaking Opening Night on Broadway!

By: Apr. 29, 2020
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On this day in 1996 Rent, written by Jonathan Larson and directed by Michael Greif, opened at Broadway's Nederlander Theatre following a history making, sold out, extended limited engagement at off-Broadway's New York Theatre Workshop.

The musical went on to win every major best musical award, including the Tony Award, as well as the Pulitzer Prize for drama. Rent became the seventh longest running show in Broadway history in 2006, surpassing Miss Saigon.

With its groundbreaking rock score by Larson and a story that captured the current of its generation, Rent is set in New York in the East Village, where a group of artists love and live La Vie Boheme even under the shadow of poverty, failure, illness and death.

To celebrate the occasion, check out this throwback news footage of the original Broadway company prepping for opening night and discussing the creation of the show, along with a rare glimpse of Jonathan Larson himself celebrating his last day at his diner job as Rent prepared to make its world premiere, and Jon's family and real-life circle of friends discussing the brief, but powerful life of this revolutionary artist.