Arthur Laurents on his WSS Revival, Spring Awakening and more.

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ljay889
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The part 2 of his NY1 is finally up.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=lF-z6IPs9bU

-Some more info on his WSS revival
-He loves 'Spring Awakening'
-He's writing a book on directing musicals, mainly Gypsy
- He did NOT like Patti's City Center 'Rose's Turn.' So they completely reworked it for Broadway. And I agree it's a million times better on Broadway.


Very interesting.
Updated On: 5/22/08 at 02:04 AM
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Wanna Be A Foster
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I love that he calls Catherine Zeta-Jones a "second banana."

I hope he puts in his will that she can never step foot near Momma Rose.
"Winning a Tony this year is like winning Best Attendance in third grade: no one will care but the winner and their mom."
-Kad

"I have also met him in person, and I find him to be quite funny actually. Arrogant and often misinformed, but still funny."
-bjh2114 (on Michael Riedel)
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ljay889
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I do love how brutally honest he is. And I'm positive he'll make sure Zeta-Jones will never play Rose.
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I am thrilled that he loved Bill T. Jones' musical staging in SPRING AWAKENING, which most people on this board have trashed, but I thought was brilliant and deserving of its Tony Award.
"Winning a Tony this year is like winning Best Attendance in third grade: no one will care but the winner and their mom."
-Kad

"I have also met him in person, and I find him to be quite funny actually. Arrogant and often misinformed, but still funny."
-bjh2114 (on Michael Riedel)
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B3TA07
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Can he like die soon?
-Benjamin
--http://www.benjaminadgate.com/
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Wanna Be A Foster
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Laurents is a genius, and a gift to American musical theatre. Let's hope he sticks around as long as possible.
"Winning a Tony this year is like winning Best Attendance in third grade: no one will care but the winner and their mom."
-Kad

"I have also met him in person, and I find him to be quite funny actually. Arrogant and often misinformed, but still funny."
-bjh2114 (on Michael Riedel)
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ljay889
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Agreed. I respect his honest so much. And I can't wait to see how his WSS turns out.
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It's just hard to watch him talk...he looks so old haha
-Benjamin
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Yeah. he talks very.....s l o w.
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He's slightly pretentious. His whole speech about TV and "boring" revivals being the downfall of musical theater and how he has no hope for the future of musical theater was very over-the-top. I mean, he even took a swing at straight plays saying that "they hope it sticks...". It's all a little too dramatic for me.

I do like his discussion on Gypsy though. Very thought provoking.
Happy...Everything! Kaye Thompson
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B3TA07 what a horrible thing to say

Namo i love u but we get it already....you don't like Madonna
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^ couldn't agree more, an awful thing to say, even in jest. And Laurents certainly has earned the right for a little pretentiousness:

Book:
Nick & Nora - 1991
The Madwoman of Central Park West - 1979
Hallelujah, Baby! - 1967 - Tony Award for Best Musical
Do I Hear a Waltz? - 1965
Anyone Can Whistle - 1964
Gypsy - 1959 - Tony Nomination for Best Musical
West Side Story - 1957 - Tony Nomination for Best Musical

Direction:
Gypsy - 2008 -- Tony Award nomination as Best Director of a Musical
Nick & Nora - 1991
Anyone Can Whistle - 1964
La Cage aux Folles - 1983 - Tony Award for Best Direction of a Musical
The Madwoman of Central Park West - 1979
Gypsy - 1974 - Tony Nomination for Best Direction of a Musical
I Can Get It for You Wholesale - 1962
Invitation to a March - 1960

Plays:
Invitation to a March - 1960
A Clearing in the Woods - 1957
The Time of the Cuckoo - 1952
The Bird Cage - 1950
Home of the Brave - 1945
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I found the choreography and the music (not the lyrics) to be the best parts of SPRING AWAKENING, as well.
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I disagree with respect to Lupone's Roses. I much preferred City Center. There, I thought I was watching Mama Rose. On Broadway, I thought I was watching Patti.
"It does me no injury for my neighbour to say there are 20 gods or no god. It neither picks my pocket, nor breaks my leg." -- Thomas Jefferson
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2 artistic hits (classics, I will admit)
and 5 flops (including one of the worst ever, NICK AND NORA)
is kind of shaky reputation, as a musical book writer.
I read his first biography hoping to hear about WEST SIDE STORY and GYPSY and instead I thought I was reading Gay porn about all the men he slept with. (not that I know anything about gay porn)

Updated On: 5/22/08 at 11:01 AM
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A former head of several Hollywood studios read Arthur's unreadable autobiography and said, "Arthur Laurents likes to say that nobody in Hollywood likes him because he's gay. That's not true. Everyone in Hollywood likes lots of people who are gay, and lots of them are gay themselves. Nobody in Hollywood likes Arthur Laurents because Arthur Laurents is an asshole."
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ARTHUR LAURENTS: Those damn kids! They're out of control!

Did Forbidden Broadway ever use Laurents as a character? They totally should.
"Y'know, I think Bertolt Brecht was rolling in his grave."
-Nellie McKay on the 2006 Broadway production of The Threepenny Opera, in which she played Polly Peachum
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I disagree with respect to Lupone's Roses. I much preferred City Center. There, I thought I was watching Mama Rose. On Broadway, I thought I was watching Patti.


- No offense, but I think you're the only person I've seen/heard say that. Patti was good at CC, but she was trying out different ways to play Rose. Now she is playing Rose. At CC her ROSE'S TURN was all anger, she just screamed at the audience. Granted I fell for it like everyone else. But now on Broadway she takes you through different stages of a psychological breakdown during her ROSE'S TURN. it's brilliant.
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I have said it also, and you'd think I was crucifying Jesus, but I also enjoyed Patti better at City Center.
And for some of the same reasons as Madbrian.
At the St. James I feel she is delivering every song as if it was a cabaret, and I didn't really see that much difference in her acting choices, so I don't understand what Laurents is talking about.
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Curtain, you've got to be kidding me.

Laurents said it - LuPone was NOT connected at City Center and her Rose's turn had no progression. She started wiht pure anger and had nowhere to go - it didn't fit her.

At the St. James, LuPone makes Rose her own by playing specific actions and seeing where they take her, rather than relying on diva-isms and screaming, and it's so much more compelling.

anyway, back on topic, Laurents is a brilliant man. He has every right to be pretentious. True, he's an asshole and probably is a real jerk, but he produces some incredible work. I think he really understands what makes an American Musical work.
I'm an old show queen , and I'm not even 30.
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From what Laurents says in the interview, his re-imagining of WSS scares me. As for revivals this season, "South Pacific" (in my opinion) is the one that offers a bold re-imagining of a classic. Though I enjoyed the "Gypsy" revival, I didn't feel like I was seeing anything I hadn't seen in countless other productions of "Gypsy."
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I completely agree, Inlovewithjerryherman.

I don't really know what Curtain is talking about. He just hates Patti, so why would he have liked her Broadway Rose?

And the critics said the opposite. At CC she performed the songs like she was a lounge/cabaret singer. Now she is singing them in full force as Rose. and I agree.
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I do not hate Patti.

I was crazy about her in EVITA, loved her in ANYTHING GOES and thought she was robbed of the TONY for SWEENEY TODD.
If you read what I wrote about her as Rose in City Center you would see I thought she was on fire the night I saw her,
I just didn't see that big a difference and I expected more of the entire production when it moved.

As far as Laurents knowing what makes American Musical Theatre work, did you see NICK AND NORA?

He had his day but he has not wriiten a truely great musical since GYPSY, which I believe is a masterpiece.
Updated On: 5/22/08 at 06:52 PM
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Well if you liked her so much in the past, you are pretty damn hard on her now. Or maybe it's just this production you don't like.
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Oh god what are they gonna do at West Side Story???? Rent Remixed anyone lol
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