How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#51
Posted: 5/4/09 at 1:46pm
The one aspect TITIANIC (the movie) had that was missing from TITANTIC (the musical) is that central story which draws the audience in and gives them one pair of characters to root for. In the musical Peter Stone tries to create a GRAND HOTEL-like panorama or many small stories set against this epic event, but as someone else here mentioned the characters and their stories aren't sufficiently developed. Consequently we marvel at the staging and the scope of Yeston's songs, but big numbers like "The Night Was Alive" are given to characters that disappear fairly quickly.

Unlike Wickedrocks (who at the time must have been ... what ... 8 years old?) I did not detest the show at all. But I saw it as a flawed musical being touted after the Tony win as one of Broadway's best. (To be fair NONE of the new musicals that season approached greatness.)

Cast albums are NOT "soundtracks."
Live theatre does not use a "soundtrack." If it did, it wouldn't be live theatre!

I host a weekly one-hour radio program featuring cast album selections as well as songs by cabaret, jazz and theatre artists. The program, FRONT ROW CENTRE is heard Sundays 9 to 10 am and also Saturdays from 8 to 9 am (eastern times) on www.proudfm.com

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#52
Posted: 5/4/09 at 2:34pm
My favorite story I have heard about the Broadway Production happened when the crow's nest is lowered from the sky and David Elder would sing "No Moon. No Wind".
Well, one night the crew realized the nest was not going to work and they sent Elder down four flights which he made just in time to hit the stage and sing.
But when the lights found him, they also found out that because the crow's nest was waist high, he wasn't wearing any pants under his pea coat.

The Broadway cast was amzing,( Vicky Clarke, Marty Moran, Brian D'Arcey James, Alma Cuervo, Judy Blazer, Clarke Thorell, Becky Ann Baker, Davod Costable, Michael Cerveris, Ted Sperling, etc. etc. etc.) and as originals left, the replacements were all excellent.

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#53
Posted: 5/4/09 at 4:28pm
For the record, I was in my mid-teens (16) when I saw TITANIC on Broadway. And I still new it was a mess. And I still think that "Still" is painful.

The opening ten minutes was a rush, and was so beautiful and it all went downhill from there. Some moments of the staging (the piano sliding) were great, but otherwise... messy.

I couldn't wait to get out of the theatre. If my memory is right my friends and I actually went to the movies right afterward to try and erase the memory and end the night on a positive. What we saw, I don't remember. Heh.
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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#54
Posted: 5/4/09 at 4:49pm
Well, I agree it was a weird season for Broadway. I just know (initially) Titanic was expected to be a mess, then there was all this hype. I went to see it . . . the opening was BREATHTAKING, and it went downhill from there. When the award was announced for Best Musical, I remember saying to myself, "PLEASE, NOT Titanic!"

Oh, well!
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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#55
Posted: 8/1/19 at 9:40am

Saw it this weekend in OKC and they gave the effect of the sinking by lifting deck chairs, floatation devices and other loose articles by rope in the air. Pretty neat!

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#56
Posted: 8/1/19 at 8:30pm

blaxx said: "So the whole ship wasn't shown?

That can't be a real question...
"

LOL!  I love when someone posts the exact same question that's running through my mind at the exact same time !

 

 

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#57
Posted: 8/1/19 at 9:41pm

At the very first preview, that little boat made a return appearance at the finale in case anyone needed to visualize what happened, I suppose. The audience reaction was not the one expected and the little boat was cut from the final scene. In that period, I tended to go to a lot of 1st previews. There were 2 that night and I had an invite to go to Steel Pier, across the street. So I missed the little boat sinking. It is one of my two greatest early preview regrets (the other being not seeing the goat when there was still a stuffed goat when the wife comes in with it). 

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#58
Posted: 8/1/19 at 10:23pm

kjones1228 said: "Saw it this weekend in OKC and they gave the effect of the sinking by lifting deck chairs, floatation devices and other loose articles by rope in the air. Pretty neat!"

I saw it too. I was at the Saturday matinee. I thought it was creative way to deal with a limited budget at the end of Act 2. I also thought we knew the ship hit the iceberg at the end of Act 1 just based on the script, music and acting. We didn’t need to “see” it. 

I’m so impressed with Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma which I just discovered last year. Having said that, this was probably my least favorite of their three summer offerings (the other two were Newsies and Singin’ in the Rain) this year and the reason for that resides solely with the musical itself. Act 1 is filled with too many character-driven songs. I get that it’s a huge cast and we need get to know them so we care about them in Act 2, but it got a bit tedious. Then the plot especially in Act 1 was moved along mainly by the dialogue, not the songs. Act 2 was better I thought. Still, for such a sad ending, I didn’t cry (I was on the verge) and I cry at almost everything. But the cast and direction was superb as was the  huge chorus. I thought it was also a nice touch to have the orchestra on stage. 

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#59
Posted: 8/1/19 at 11:11pm

The small model of the ship that sailed across the stage and 'hit the iceberg' out of sight stage left to close Act 1 always seemed unnecessary to me.   The reaction of the crew to the impending collision, the audio of the crash, and immediately going to black would have been enough.  The audience pretty much knows the story without the visual of the little boat. 

When the lifts adjusted the slope of the deck during the listing and sinking, the pitch was pretty steep.  The cast really had hold on and maintain their balance while singing that sweeping score.

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#60
Posted: 8/1/19 at 11:16pm

Found a picture. Pretty sure this was the actual Broadway set back in the day. I saw it and the lounge space is very familar. If it's not the set, it's still the same concept: re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?

One of the biggest disappointments I ever have seen on Broadway. This sinking effect was the most interesting thing about it. I am still amazed it won Best Musical that season. This total bore was the Best Musical winner and Jekyll and Hyde was not even nominated.

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#61
Posted: 8/1/19 at 11:29pm

Scarlet Leigh said: "I am still amazed it won Best Musical that season. This total bore was the Best Musical winner and Jekyll and Hyde was not even nominated."

Jekyll & Hyde had some issues as well but I still maintain the Broadway version was the best version of the book and score aside from the use of "Good 'N' Evil" instead of "Bring on the Men." I've never understood why future productions and the licensed version reverted back to the earlier book instead of the book used on Broadway.

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#62
Posted: 8/2/19 at 12:16am

It would have been nice if the Broadway set had been a little more detailed like that. There were lots of neat tricks with the set though. The third class staircase scene was kind of neat.

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#63
Posted: 8/2/19 at 12:25am

CATSNYrevival said: "Scarlet Leigh said: "I am still amazed it won Best Musical that season. This total bore was the Best Musical winner and Jekyll and Hyde was not even nominated."

Jekyll & Hyde had someissues as well but I still maintain the Broadway version was the best version of the book and score aside from the use of "Good 'N' Evil" instead of"Bring on the Men." I've never understood why future productions and the licensed version reverted back to the earlier book instead of the book used on Broadway.
"

 

The show was not perfect but after having seen the pre-Broadway tour of Jekyll & Hyde and then seeing the Broadway production I was floored at how they destroyed it. It has been a while but They used most, if not all, of the music from the concept album. The sets set a darker tone. That Board of Governors scene was great on the tour. And of course Bring on the Men and the transformation mirror (That they lost the right to use on Broadway). That scene almost got a standing ovation the night I saw it and I heard it got a few while the show was in town. I can't listen to the Broadway Cast recording.

Still upset that I never got to see TITANIC on Broadway. Used to love when Letterman would check in nightly to see if the ship sank!

 

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#64
Posted: 8/2/19 at 11:52am

I worked at the Marquis as a ground-floor greeter that summer and I remember a few times the audience filing out of the theatre early because the set stopped working. (I'm trying to remember if they let them back in if they fixed it in time.)



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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#65
Posted: 8/2/19 at 1:32pm

uncageg said: "That Board of Governors scene was great on the tour. And of course Bring on the Men and the transformation mirror (That they lost the right to use on Broadway). "

 

Okay, not to hijack the thread, but could you go more in detail on this, I haven't heard this story at all. 

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#66
Posted: 8/2/19 at 1:33pm

JoeKv99 said: "To me, the most effective moment was at the top of act 2, as the first class passengers gathered in the salon and bitched about being awakened for nothing. During a pause in the song, a rolling bar cart suddenly rolled across stage as the ship was starting to sink. The simple easy effect brought the drama home far better than any of the subsequent hydraulics. "

I saw the Broadway production and agree this was the most effective “effect” of the evening. It was chilling. 

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#67
Posted: 8/2/19 at 1:40pm

theatregoer3 said: "I saw the Broadway production and agree this was the most effective “effect” of the evening. It was chilling."

I saw the first national tour and the effect was the same. The audience was dead silent. It was almost terrifying.

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#68
Posted: 8/2/19 at 7:13pm

The Broadway boat

 

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qQ-4ycDG6Oc">here</a>

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#69
Posted: 8/2/19 at 8:08pm
Curious how they did the show non/union?
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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#70
Posted: 8/2/19 at 8:15pm

amoni said: "The Broadway boat



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qQ-4ycDG6Oc">here
"

 

Looks cool to me! Audience seemed impressed. 

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#71
Posted: 8/2/19 at 10:30pm

Watching that video reminded me of seeing the OBC. I loved the show but thought the staging was really bad. Recently Signature Theatre in Arlington showed just how bad the OB production was by staging the musical perfectly. There was rumor that a revised version of the Signature production  would hit Broadway this year. I hope it does.

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#72
Posted: 8/2/19 at 10:33pm

Luminaire2 said: "Looks cool to me! Audience seemed impressed."

I thought it was cool and I was impressed. Especially with the water effect which I still can't figure out. It looked like real water from my seat.

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#73
Posted: 8/2/19 at 10:47pm

I still think Titanic has the best score of any Broadway musical since 1997, with Ragtime, Caroline, or Change, The Light in the Piazza, Gray Gardens and A Catered Affair following.  The show had its staging issues but that score is superb and memorable.

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#74
Posted: 8/2/19 at 11:06pm

ChairinMain said: "uncageg said: "That Board of Governors scene was great on the tour. And of course Bring on the Men and the transformation mirror (That they lost the right to use on Broadway)."



Okay, not to hijack the thread, but could you go more in detail on this, I haven't heard this story at all.
"

 

I will PM you.

 

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re: How did the Titanic sink on Broadway?#75
Posted: 8/2/19 at 11:22pm
Act II sinking

https://youtu.be/ecrtiArkBQg