Broadway Musicals: A Jewish Legacy

Michael Kantor’s documentary, Broadway Musicals: A Jewish Legacy, examines the extent to which the Broadway musical has been essentially a Jewish creation. It is a loving tribute to a heritage for which all the world should be grateful given the dozens of well known and indeed hundreds if not thousands of lesser known Jewish composers […]

Marc Shaiman breaks his silence on the music (and troubles) of Smash

Smash, which finished its run on NBC just about a week ago, was certainly a lot of things, and inspired a lot of mixed responses in those who watched the show. Even those who defended it fervently couldn’t claim it was consistently good.

Smash: The Big Finish

“C’mon, Karen Cartwright, the show’s over!” And with that line, and a shot of an empty stage, lit to high heaven, with not a drip of applause, we reach the conclusion of Smash. Ambitious, erratic, emotional, and perhaps misconceived, Smash nonetheless gave the live theatre arts a shot at the network TV big-time that it […]

Maybe Smash isn’t. But Slings and Arrows was, and we’re all watching it together this summer

Hello, dear readers! Over the last several weeks, I’ve been very moved by how many people have come up to me, or written, and said something along the lines of, “Well, Smash is doomed, but I’m sad! I enjoyed your recaps and I wish you could keep writing!” I should also note at this point […]

Smash 2:15 The Transfer

First of all, Smash-ers, I’m assuming you’ve seen this. I’ll give it a minute to sink in. Not that it’s any surprise to anyone, of course. Smash has been tanking hardcore in the ratings for the entirety of season 2. It got so bad that it was airing first-run episodes on Saturday nights, for Pete’s sake. […]

Adi Stein’s day on the set of Veep

Staff in the Executive Office Building scramble over yet another incident involving the Vice President. This time, while the President and his advisors are photographed tensely following the release of hostages, the VP seems more interested in a cell phone.  The embarrassing photo has gone viral. Later, the White House’s Dream Metric Team analyzes the […]

Smash 2:14 The Phenomenon

My dear readers, I am so, so, so sorry. After my praise of last week’s episode, I have to imagine that a handful of you, or perhaps even one, responded along the lines of, “Oh, how exciting! John clearly knows what he’s talking about and I will hereby watch next week’s Smash with a renewed […]

Free viewing of the New York Philharmonic’s Carousel – ends Friday

Act quickly – you only have a few days to view one of the greatest concert presentations of a musical that I’ve ever seen … the New York Philharmonic’s staging of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Carousel. 

Smash 2:13 The Producers

So, it turns out, Smash has been sly like a fox this whole dang time. Either there was a serious course-correction paying off here, or I watched tonight the climax of a carefully-laid story in which I was actually supposed to hate Jimmy the entire time and think Kyle was a sweet magical angel. I’m […]

Smash 2:12 Opening Night was, well, a smash!

I’m verklempt! It’s what I’ve always wanted! Yes folks, as the goosebumps started emerging on my arms during the sweet strains of Megan Hilty’s “Don’t Forget Me”, I realized the show had turned a corner. My eyes stared at their widest as the camera panned around the gathering of Marilyn’s lovers, and then the sharp, […]

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