Look Back at Baker Street on Broadway

From the Archives   Look Back at Baker Street on Broadway
 
The Sherlock Holmes-themed musical opened on Broadway on February 16, 1965.
Baker Street_Broadway_Production Photos_1965_HR
Fritz Weaver and Cast Friedman-Abeles/©NYPL for the Performing Arts

February 16 marked the original Broadway premiere of Baker Street, the Sherlock Holmes-based musical with a book by Jerome Coopersmith and music and lyrics by Marian Grudeff and Raymond Jessel. The musical opened at the Broadway Theatre in 1965, eventually transferring to the Martin Beck Theatre (since renamed the Al Hirschfeld) before closing on November 14 of that year.

Based on the Holmes stories "A Scandal in Bohemia," "The Final Problem," and "The Empty House" by Arthur Conan Doyle, Baker Street also featured multiple songs by Fiddler on the Roof composing team Sheldon Harnick and Jerry Bock, who were brought in to iron out problems faced by the show during out-of-town tryouts. Just before the show opened, its producers had drummed up enough buzz that a dress code was imposed—patrons would only be admitted to the theatre if clad in formal attire (jackets and ties for the men, and gowns for the women). These restrictions were quickly abandoned after the show received mixed reviews.

Baker Street starred Fritz Weaver, Peter Sallis, Martin Gabel, Inga Swenson, Virginia Vestoff, and Teddy Green. It also saw the Broadway debuts of Tommy Tune and Christopher Walken, both in supporting roles.

Flip through photos from the 1965 production below:

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