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The Dress Circle: London Shows That Didn't Transfer

Musicals are truly risky propositions, and even if a musical is a hit on one side of the Atlantic, it doesn’t mean that it will prosper, let alone make the crossing, and we’re going to look at five British musicals that never made it to Broadway on this week’s Dress Circle (5/31 7:00 p.m.).   Some were hits, and some were misses, but they still deserve to be heard, and introducing new and/or unknown works to our audiences is part of our mission for the program.   

On this segment, we’ll listen to five shows beginning in the 1950’s with “Grab Me a Gondola” and “Make a Wish” which were both probably deemed “too British” to transfer but also came at a time before many British shows were actually coming our way.  Both of these shows were extremely well received.  From there, we’ll jump to three shows from the 2000’s.  “La Cava,” a medieval musical that was somewhat unfocused and not well received; “Marguerite” which was based on "Camille" and focused on a series of rather unsympathetic characters in Paris during the Nazi occupation, and “The Lord of the Rings,” a spirited musical that began in Canada and floundered in the West End because of its hugely expensive production.  

This week, it’s all about musicals with which you may not be familiar, so join us on a journey of discovery.

Michael is program host and host of the WWFM Sunday Opera, Sundays at 3 pm, and co-host of The Dress Circle, Sundays at 7 pm.
Ted Otten is co-host of The Dress Circle