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The Orignal Writing Team for Little Women was Replaced Right?

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BobbyBubby
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Is this the team that got replaced?

http://www.villagetheatre.org/mainstage_0708-lw.shtml

Any details on why this happened, etc, would be appreciated, as I am doing an article on both.
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Switz78
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Nope this is a completely different version from the Broadway one. It was done at Syracuse last year as a staged workshop I believe.
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BobbyBubby
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But this version has "I have a Garden" in it, which I believe was in the original. This production was the team that got fired. Though they have put it up elsewhere, it was originally going to be produced by the same people who ended up doing the Foster version.
RentBoy86
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I like the Foster version. I don't know the Book that the show is based off of, but I like the score. And I found the show to be very enjoyable.
sondhead
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The writers of the Broadway Little Women were replacements for other people?? THEY must have REALLY sucked.
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sondhead, that's pretty cruel. I'm not some Little Women fanatic defending the life out of the show, and I know it has its problems. But those creators tried their hardest and did their best. Perhaps they came up short, but there are a lot of redeemable things about the musical that I dont think should be written off for a snarky comment.
"...even if it's only one minute - with a man talkin' quiet and his hand touchin' her face."
BBBoy
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Yup - this is the original team, that was "fired" from the Broadway production of Little Women.

I actually was cast (but had to turn down) in a production of it in 2003.

The story is - Kim, Alison, and Allan Knee were all commissioned to write a musical of LW, that was aimed toward broadway. The score was good - but seemed a bit more aimed at Children's theater than the broadway score (which was also pretty darn kiddie, IMHO), but it was accomplished and way more polished and crafted than the Broadway score. Really strong lyrics and more period appropriate music. (I'm sorry, but inserting a JRB like pop number in the middle of the show ('Take A Chance on Me') was almost unforgiveable)

Anyway, Jason Howland and his wife, Dani Davis, had the commercial rights for the show, and, after a couple of workshops, they decided to fire Alison and Kim so that Jason (who cut his teeth being Frank Wildhorn's music director)could write a brand new score to Allan's book.

After that - Alison and Kim (who is actually a guy - btw - think he's scandinavian or something) decided to push forward with the regional route, and have been doing it here and there ever since.



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sydney23
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BBBoy's explanation is the story I know as well. The original team's replacement was thought to be more political and opportunistic rather than a reflection of that team's failure. I know a lot of people who preferred the original to the resulting Broadway version.
BkCollector
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I'm sorry. I'm familiar with the book and every film adaptation out there, and this musical missed the mark on so many levels.

For a really incredible and moving adaptation of the story to a musical setting, try Mark Adamo's opera. It's transcendently beautiful.
sondhead
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"sondhead, that's pretty cruel. I'm not some Little Women fanatic defending the life out of the show, and I know it has its problems. But those creators tried their hardest and did their best. Perhaps they came up short, but there are a lot of redeemable things about the musical that I dont think should be written off for a snarky comment."

I'm sure that (or at least I hope that) they tried their hardest.. but in my mind they failed. The songs are forgettable and the book is god-awful, and the fact that they "tried hard" surely isn't going to raise my opinion of the show at all. All that matters is the product, which in this case (at least in my opinion) is just lousy.
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When I fist saw the show on tour I hadn't read the novel , but I was able to follow the plot pretty well, although I thought at the time that the characters (except for Jo) weren't well developed and a lot of the music was forgettable.

Then a read the novel and realized that Allan Knee's book for the show was like the sparknotes version of the orignial. There were so many missed opportunities to hit some really emotional notes with the audience. Why didn't Laurie have a sweeping ballad to sing when he gets rejected by Jo? Why was the return of Mr. March left out of the show altogether? Why didn't we see more of the other sisters? It just seemed like they could have done so much more with the material than they did.
"You drank a charm to kill John Proctor's wife! You drank a charm to kill Goody Proctor!" - Betty Parris to Abigail Williams in Arthur Miller's The Crucible
sondhead
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"Why didn't Laurie have a sweeping ballad to sing when he gets rejected by Jo?"

Because they were more focused on giving Sutton Foster a belty "I want" number that would have been less awkward had it been one of the first three numbers so we had a purpose for the character before intermission... but a clear plot line and developed characters clearly wasn't their focus when writing this show, so..
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but a clear plot line and developed characters clearly wasn't their focus when writing this show, so..

LOL! Too true.

(And to think I saw the tour multiple times.)
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I think the show is pretty mediocre but I agree with the critics that said that this might be the best show that could have been made from this particular novel.
The novel is a cute read, I grew up reading about Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy and loved them to death, but once I grew up I realized it really isn't a great piece of literature by any means. So yes, the musical is corny and generic, but I'm not sure anyone else could have made a really good musical from this piece unless they took major liberties.
"Some people can thrive and bloom living life in a living room, that's perfect for some people of one hundred and five. But I at least gotta try, when I think of all the sights that I gotta see, all the places I gotta play, all the things that I gotta be at"
sondhead
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"I agree with the critics that said that this might be the best show that could have been made from this particular novel."

Then it wasn't worth musicalizing
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Well I'm seeing it in a few weeks, so I'll post my thoughts on both then. I found the Broadway production standard musical theatre 101 writing. The performances were top notch though. I have heard a song from the other version and it is much more complicated music wise and says more than those rather sub par songs Foster and Company were saddled with.
BkCollector
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"I agree with the critics that said that this might be the best show that could have been made from this particular novel"

Please, take the time to listen to how very superior this is to the Broadway cheese-fest.
Beth's Aria - Have Peace, Jo
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T3R1zwB6L2U
I know it's not a musical, but if you're interested in the best musical adaptation of Little Women out there, look no further.

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dry2olives
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A while back I saw a reading at the York of Alison Hubbard and Kim Oler's Little Women, with a book by Sean Hartley. This is the score that was originally intended for Broadway but when they were fired from the project, they got Hartley to write a new book. This version is completely superior to what was on Broadway. Donna Lynne Champlin played Jo, but it wasn't a star vehicle like the Broadway version. This was a well written ensemble musical with good theatre songs that effectively told the story.
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Sondhead, that was my point, that LITTLE WOMEN never merited a musical adaptation on Broadway. I think it's a good piece for community theater or a high school production, but it lacks any kind of sophistication or thrill that it'd need for a Broadway production to succeed. I agree with Bobby that as it stands, Broadway's LITTLE WOMEN is an exercise of Theater 101. And I know it has been said repeatedly, but "Astonishing" is one of the most shameless intents to copy "Defying Gravity."
"Some people can thrive and bloom living life in a living room, that's perfect for some people of one hundred and five. But I at least gotta try, when I think of all the sights that I gotta see, all the places I gotta play, all the things that I gotta be at"
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DickonDefysGravity
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I think 'ASTONISHING' is absolutely lovely and better when sung with a mix at the end, rather than a full out belt.

Sutton was glorious though.
And you think of all of the things you've seen, and you wish that you could live in between ,and you're back again only different than before... After the Sky. -Into the Woods (Jack)