It was in November 2007 when producers announced that Busker Alley, which was scheduled to arrive on Broadway in 1995 before star Tommy Tune broke his foot, was gearing up for another stab at Broadway.
In a collective statement released Aug. 25, 2009, producers stated, "Due to the loss of one member of the writing team and the health issues of another, it is with great regret that we withdraw from this project. We will be returning all of the money to our investors and release all of our sponsors from their obligations. We have been very fortunate to be associated with such an amazing team including director/designer, Tony Walton, lighting designer Richard Pilbrow and performers including Jim Dale, Glenn Close, John Bolton, Jessica Grove, Elizabeth Inghram, George S. Irving, Gavin Lee, Noah Racy and Ann Rogers who have been very supportive of our efforts in preparing this show for Broadway. We wish everyone the very best for the future."
Based on the 1938 British film "St. Martin's Lane," Busker Alley features music and lyrics by Richard and Robert Sherman and a book by A J Carothers.
Busker Alley, according to press notes, concerns "a devil-may-care busker [one who entertains in public on London's famous streets], Charlie, no longer 'as young as he was,' [who] takes a gutsy, young sneak thief under his wing. He discovers her gift for music and performing and, with his tutelage, her talent blossoms along with his growing infatuation for her. Although Libby becomes part of the busker family, she wants more out of life. Her natural charm and drive feeds her need for 'being on the inside.' When she attracts the attention of a major West End producer, she leaves Charlie to follow her dream. She soon becomes a major stage, and after she unsuccessfully tries to introduce Charlie to her new world, Charlie comes to the realization that he and Libby belongs in different worlds."
Tommy Tune starred in a pre-Broadway tour of Busker Alley in 1995. Six weeks prior to the musical's Broadway debut, Tune broke his foot during a performance in Tampa, and the show never reached New York. The new production was to be directed by Tony Walton and star Tony winner Jim Dale.
The "Busker Alley" CD is available on iTunes or on the Jay Records website: www.jayrecords.com.