VINTAGE PLAYBILL: La Cage aux Folles, 1983

By Brynn Cox
August 21, 2013

On this date 30 years ago, the Harvey Fierstein-Jerry Herman musical La Cage aux Folles premiered on Broadway.



The show opened Aug. 21, 1983, at the Palace Theatre. George Hearn starred in a Tony-winning performance as Albin, and Gene Barry was Tony-nominated for his performance as Georges.

"La Cage aux Folles is the first Broadway musical ever to give center stage to a homosexual love affair," wrote Frank Rich in his New York Times review, "but don't go expecting an earthquake. The show at the Palace is the schmaltziest, most old-fashioned major musical Broadway has seen since Annie, and it's likely to be just as popular with children of all ages."

It went on to win six Tonys including Best Original Score and Best Musical (beating out competitors like Sunday in the Park with George and Baby) and played 1,761 performances over the next four years. 

The musical has since returned to Broadway in a 2004 revival starring Gary Beach and Daniel Davis and a 2010 revival starring Douglas Hodge and Kelsey Grammer.

Read the 1983 opening night Playbill in the Vault.