Filichia on why he thinks CURTAINS closed

Yankeefan007
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Filichia on why he thinks CURTAINS closed#1
Posted: 7/25/08 at 4:16pm
Wrong number on the Tony Awards; too much of a twist at the end.


http://www.theatermania.com/peterfilichia/permalinks/2008/07/25/Curtains-Adjustments
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DottieD'Luscia
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A very interesting perspective. I remember saying after seeing their number on the Tony Awards last year, that there was nothing about that number that made me want to go and see Curtains. I didn't.
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alfgiotir
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i had the same thought of dottie but then i decided to go and i ended up LOVING it. one of my favorite shows now. My grandmother and 11 yrd old brother both loved it too.
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I actually enjoyed the number. And I saw the show last December. Also, the revelation that she killed him really didn't bother me.
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I would've gone with "Thataway" to show off the choreography or "I Miss the Music" because I think it is a beautiful song.
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I would like to have seen "Thataway" too, but "Showpeople" showcased the star: Tony winner DHP.
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I agree they could have chosen a better Tony number, but I don't see how Carmen killing Sidney hurt ticket sales or caused the show to close.
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It closed because one of the assets was the cast & it would not have been the same when Pierce & Monk left. It was on TDF for most of the run so it was never a runaway hit

It should do well on the road.
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I really hated Curtains Tony performance and decided I wasn't going to see it due to that performance. I didnt end up seeing it until a friend dragged me to it a few weeks prior to its closing.

I agree with the idea that "It's A Business" would have been the best number for the Tonys, it was definitely my favorite number from the show and had they done that one I'd have probably run out and seen it soon after.

The plot turn at the end didnt both me too much, but it wasnt really needed either.
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WiCkEDrOcKS
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I think Filichia's article is a bit ridiculous...it did really well after the Tony performance did it not? Wasn't that it's best box office stretch? The summer after the Tonys.

I think it closed because it just wasn't that good. I personally did not like it very much at all and everyone I talked to was not enthusiastic about it so I doubt general word of mouth was great.
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I found the show to be Mediocrity at it's most passable. It wasn't great but wasn't terribly bad either. Most of the people I know who saw it felt pretty much the same.
I think with that general word of mouth any show would close.
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It wasn't a very good musical. My friends refused to clap at the end. It got bad word of mouth.
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I'm confused. The show ran for a year and a half. It's hardly Glory Days.

I loved the show. I thought it was a great throwback to traditional musical comedy from one of the all-time greatest songwriting teams. Great songs, fun show.
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I really enjoyed the show, but didn't think the plot twist was bad enough to ruin the rest of the experience for me. Besides, I Miss the Music is such a gorgeous song, I'd be willing to forgive a far worse book than Curtains had just for that number alone.
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I agree with Mr. Roxy. The major problem would have been replacing such a talented cast. Not that you couldn't, but it would've have been difficult; and would people pay to see a so-called mediocre show with less than top names? I would like to have seen them try because I love the show, but I don't have to pay the bills, so taking the risk isn't a problem for me.

I don't think the ending was a problem, most, not all, but most of the people to which I recommended Curtains enjoyed it and actually liked the twist at the end.

As for the Tonys, I think the intention was to showcase DHP - for that "Tough Act to Follow" would have been grand. But takin' out of context I don't think it would have worked. You have to see the show to understand the 'dream'. "Thataway" IMO would have been the most fun for the viewing audience, there again, there would have been problems with lyrics and choreography for a primetime audience. The number also didn't showcase DHP which obviously they needed to do becuase of his Best Actor nod.

That said, the show did well after the Tonys. It had momentum at that point as it did through the summer and into fall. The momentum was lost after the strike. If you look at the grosses, Curtains' grosses never returned to pre-strike form. So my own opinion is that Curtains was a strike casualty.
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I saw Curtains several times, and each time, the audience gasped at the plot twist. (Even though it has been revealed already in Filichia's column and on this thread, Filichia was wrong to include it in his piece, as Theatre of the Stars is planning a mini-tour of Curtains in 2009, which WAS announced). I think he's dead wrong about the plotting. He's not necessarily wrong about the Tony number, but it is clear why it was chosen. "Tough Act" needs the two hours you've spent with Cioffi to be appreciated. "Thataway" didn't showcase Monk or Hyde Pierce. "It's a Business," though tame for most of what comes out of Carmen's mouth during the rest of the evening, might have seen a bit too vulgar in spots for a Tony number, and again, does not include Hyde Pierce, although he's onstage watching it.
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So....what exactly is the speculation in that article supposed to accomplish at this late stage?

Filichia presents two crazy hypotheses with very weak supporting data, and his 20/20 hindsight appears to be affected by bad vision.

CURTAINS was an entertaining show that ran its course. As fun as it was, it was not a "repeat" visit for many. The "perfect storm" of a cast could probably not be easily re-created, so it was best that it went out on a high note. To make assumptions or point fingers is a little silly at this point, and as effective as critiquing a corpse's hair style at the funeral.

Many loved the show, but they all close eventually.
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Updated On: 7/26/08 at 10:53 AM
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I loved CURTAINS, but the plot got very draggy at the 3/4 mark. I think a good half hour could have been cut. while the numbers were excitingly staged and gorgeous to look at, they each could have trimmed by a few minutes. And the multiple versions of "In The Same Boat" stalled the action IMHO.
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I liked Curtains a lot...for the first 5 minutes. Once the bad actress was shot, I had nothing to live for.

All the performers were great, especially Edward Hibbert, but the show was, as SNAFU so aptly put it, "mediocrity at its most passable." (I love that, BTW.)
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He seems to be a fan of the show, yet he didn't know the tour had been announced. Then he blurts out a definite key plot twist. Irresponsible, non-professional journalism to say the least. Isn't theatre Flilchia's business - more or less? Geez do a search or ask someone, you write for a theatre site for goodness sake. Ugh!
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Filichia is a well-respected theatre journalist. Maybe he thinks that the plot is inconsequential. I know I did.
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I predict CURTAINS will have a long, prosperous life in community theatre. It has lots of good character roles, a leading man who doesn't have to look like a model or be a BRILLIANT singer, and not ALL of the ensemble have to be great dancers.
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I don't read Filichia's column anymore and haven't for a number of years, since he became so negative, but I do want to share my thoughts.

I saw CURTAINS three times and each time the audience had a fabulous time throughout. I attended with theater professionals who all loved it as much as I did. No musical is perfect (except GYPSY) but throughout my 20+ years of seeing Broadway shows, CURTAINS remains three of the most fun evenings I've had in a theater.

It's mind-boggling that a show is judged on a number that's shown on TV. Musicals aren't supposed to be written with a TV appearance in mind - they're written for the stage.
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Too MUCH of a twist at the end? That had to be the most dissapointingly predictable ending of who-dunnit I've ever seen!
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Rath liked CURTAINS before she even saw it, because it starred a lesbian.

Talk about predictable.
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