Sunday, November 19, 2017




                                    (      James Barbour and  Ali Ewoldt)
                                                                             ( Tickets )


The longest running opera show in Broadway History ..
  some days back , We went to Majestic Theatre in Times Square New York  to witness Andrew Llyod Webber's longest running opera ( based on the novel' Le Fanto'me de L'Opera' )' The Phantom of The Opera'.
The opera had Well known Broadway singer and actor James Barbour and the chicago born actress Ali Ewoldt in lead roles. James Barbour has also acted as Sydney Carton on Broadway in" A Tale of Two Cities " and" Les Miserables" .His role in films like Eight Crazy nights, Alchemy, Dracula, The Gift and Excalibur have already created his space in cinema .
This two act opera has 19 scenes and is set in Paris of late nineteenth century. The first act or Overture ( follows a brief Prologue) has 10 scenes while the second act or Entr'acte has 9 scenes .

Broadway is the name of a street in Manhattan New York that joins North of the city with south like so many avenues. There are about 40 professional Theatres on Broadway that show plays . Each theatre has minimum seating capacity of 500 persons . So many well known names from Hollywood also act in Broadway plays , comedies and musical shows.

Some current popular shows  at Broadway  Theatres are Alladin ( New Amsterdam Theatre), Hello Dolly( Shubert Theatre), Lion King( Minskoff Theatre) , Dear Evan Hansen( Music Box Theatre), Mormon( Eugene O'Neil Theatre) ,Parisian Woman( With Uma Thurman at Hudson Theatre),Come From Away ( Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre) ,A Bronx Tale ( Longare Theatre) ,Cats( Neil Simon Theatre) ,Chicago ( Ambassador Theatre) , M.Butterfly ( Cort Theatre) , Waitress ( Brooks Atkinson Theatre) and many more.

Any Broadway play or opera prohibits you to conduct Audio or video recordings. Any flash used in photo cameras is prohibited as it disturbs the performers and audience. You may be noticed by the standing security guards and politely asked to leave the hall. I found them Very strict on this aspect .Phones are to be placed on silent modes. This restriction is backed by adequate legal framework created under New York City Law.
Now i understand why Poet Dina Nath Naadim was highly impressed when he saw the Chinese opera ''The White Haired Girl'' during his visit to that country. In New york, i Came to know many things about 'The white Haired Girl ' from a Broadway booklet . The opera was first staged in 1945 and President Mao is reported to have been in Tears after he saw the opera 'The White Haired Girl.''
My Salute to the great Broadway actors especially James Barbour ( Phantom), super talented actress Ali Ewoldt (christine) ,Rodney Ingram( 3 roles he performed ) , Laird Mackintosh ( Monsieur Andre) ,Raquel S Grown and so many other actors. The fantastic Bellet dancers got standing ovation at the end. The opera finished with an appeal from Barbour seeking donation for poor Breast Cancer patients. His words could move even the strongest in the audience. He said:
'' Dont believe that Cancer is something that happens to others. Help those who cant make it unless you put your hand in the wallet and part with one dollar, five dollars ,ten dollars or twenty dollars. Those unfortunate guys also have a right to life .you can make that happen. No cash we ask. As you leave this theatre , Just buy a Phantom key ring, a T Shirts , a pen or a cap. Help if you can . ''

In recent years, performing arts Technologies world over have undergone unprecedented growth and evolution. For performers , it has created newer scopes to excel and be more creative.
According Prof Priscilla Lindsay from School of Music Theatre And Drama , University of Michigan USA :
" Technology is the backbone of any theatrical, dance, or musical production. The audience needs to see, hear, and feel a performance as fully as possible so that it is a rich, emotional, and unforgettable event."
I will add that we need to do a lot in India to make Technological updation in our Theatre . Our Theatre has yet to become financially viable .It has to prove its financial viability for the people who devote their time and energy for it. The opera that i saw has been running at Broadway since last 29 years with newer and newer actors moving in as time passes on.The value addition of Ballet pieces with superb music was simply a treat. Theatre that makes profuse use of updated Technology to support performers on stage is still missing in our country. I mean the computer guided light, special effects and sound management is still not availbale in most of our Drama Theatres. Computer guided set change over system is something unknown to us. While watching the play under reference, i felt as if the sound was specially delivered to my ears.
Anyways ,the list could be long but i am convinced that we need to do a lot to improve and make our rich Theatre economically Viable. It pains me to see our talented Artists doing some dull jobs to live. To them, our Theatre is unable to provide honorable means of sustenance.
(Autar Mota)

TIME OUT ( New York )Magazine in its 'Best of Broadway segment ' informs about staging of "The Parisian Woman " at Hudson Theatre sometime in November 2017.The play has celebrated Hollywood actress Uma Thurman in lead role. Shall try to witness this one as well.

January 26, 2018, is the anniversary date for Broadway's longest-running show. I am informed that this 30th anniversary will be celebrated two days earlier on January 24. Plans are being final

 CHINAR SHADE by Autarmota is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License  Based on a work at http:\\\.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.