The longest running musical of all time, 'The Fantasticks,' has just hit a new milestone. The moonlit tale of a boy, a girl, two fathers, a wall, a box full of actors and a bandit hit a record breaking 21,000 performances on Monday. The show, while technically Off-Broadway because of seating capacity, originally starring Jerry Orbach ('Chicago,' '42nd Street,' 'Law & Order') as the lead El Gallo, now plays out a Broadway theater bearing the actors name. Written by Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt (both of which also wrote I Do! I Do!) the show’s simple yet mesmerizing score and poetic book and lyrics has been charming audiences all around the world for over 55 years. Based off of Edmond Rostand’s play 'Les Romanesques,' which itself is loosely (very loosely) based on 'Romeo & Juliet,' tells the story of two romantics who dream themselves star crossed lovers and the plot to cross and uncross them.
Seth Rudetsky knows a things or two about musical theater. It is pretty much his entire life. If you listen to SiriusXM 'On Broadway' (and you should) than you have very likely heard one of Rudetsky’s many shows where he either playing his favorite Broadway tunes or recalling some his of his favorite moments in theater history. When is not busy with the channel 'On Broadway,' Seth is preparing for his upcoming show Disaster! which is coming to Broadway. But that is not all. Rudetsky regularly pens a column for Playbill where he shares some his many experiences “Onstage and Backstage.” Recently, Seth tried shared a story will resonate with all of us who have been stuck in September at some point in our lives. Check out the report below to see what Rudetsky remembers about his time in 'The Fantasticks.'
Alas, the producers of Off-Broadway's THE FANTASTICKS have announced that the perpetually running musical will finally limp on t'wards the moonlight on Sunday, May 3 -- the 55th anniversary, to the very day, of the opening of the show way back in 1960. Come that fateful Sunday, the production will have played a total of, get ready, 20,672 performances in New York City alone. OK, so here's the math and geography: 17,162 at the old Sullivan Street Playhouse + another 3,510 at alum Jerry Orbach's place at, even better, the Snapple Theater Center. Like a Romeo and Juliet but with 1,000% more Backstreet B-spawn, the score to THE FANTASTICKS will no doubt become its legacy. Featuring music by Harvey Schmidt with book, lyrics and direction by the incomparable Tom Jones (no, not that Tom Jones), you'll never be able to hear tunes like "Try To Remember", "Soon It's Gonna Rain" or "They Were You" as they were intended ever again.