Broadway or The Bowl? Where Will Bombshell Next Play?

News   Broadway or The Bowl? Where Will Bombshell Next Play?
Following the sold-out June 8 New York concert of Bombshell, the fictional show from "Smash" that musicalizes the life story of Marilyn Monroe, many are wondering what the next stage is for the property.

"Smash" producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron produced the starry presentation of Bombshell, which features a score by Tony Award-winning songwriters Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman. The evening was co-directed by Emmy winner Joshua Bergasse and Wittman with choreography by Bergasse.

About the future of Bombshell, co-creator Shaiman told the Los Angeles Times, "I would certainly love to think that these songs and those performances could continue to live…Anyone in that theater would be perplexed as to why something like that couldn't continue."

Co-producer Meron added, "What we start with is one of the greatest scores that's been written for the theater in I don't know how many decades…So it's a pretty auspicious beginning to combine that score with a story about a beloved movie icon. But that's easier said than done."

Although co-producer Zadan admitted, "We don't quite know what's going to happen in the next couple of months or year," co-creator Wittman said the Actors Fund, who benefited from the New York concert, would like a West Coast encore.

"I would love to do this at the Hollywood Bowl," Wittman told the L.A. paper. "That would definitely be appropriate. Marilyn comes home."


Flip Through Bombshell's Broadway Playbill

Megan Hilty
Megan Hilty

The anticipated New York event sold out in just over an hour after tickets were released via a special pre-sale April 13 that was made available to fans who donated to a special Kickstarter fund to help fund the concert.

Fan response on Kickstarter proved to be an early indicator of just how eager "Smash" viewers were to see Bombshell in the flesh. More than $225,000 was raised on the first day it launched, with the fund totaling $318,120 by the time it ended.

Photo Call: Katharine McPhee and Megan Hilty Are Duelling Marilyns in New Bombshell Rehearsal Shots!

The cast featured original "Smash" stars Christian Borle, Will Chase, Megan Hilty, Katharine McPhee, Debra Messing, Jaime Cepero, Brian d'Arcy James, Ann Harada, Jeremy Jordan, Leslie Odom, Jr. and Wesley Taylor with newcomer for the evening Tony winner Donna McKechnie.

The Bombshell ensemble included Yesenia Ayala, Ioana Alfonso, Emily Bindiger, Colin Bradbury, Benjamin Chavez, Dennis Collins, Neal Coomer, Alexa De Barr, Josh Franklin, Karla Garcia, Mary Gatchell, Alex Gibson, Tyrone Jackson, Reed Kelly, Jenny LaRoche, Marty Lawson, Carolyn Leonhart, Karen Lloyd, Michael McArthur, Paul McGill, Chase Madigan, Kevin Osborne, Nicole Prothro, Lillie Ricciardi, Eugene Ruffolo, Michael Ruocco, Ripley Sobo, Eric Stretch, Sarah Tolar, Jessica Walker, Katie Webber, Tatiana Wechsler and Sam Zack.

The creative team included Scott Pask (scenic elements); Carol Sherry (costume advisor); Donald Holder (lighting); Nevin Steinberg (sound supervisor); Emiliano Pares (props); Peter Nigrini (projection designs); Nathan Johnson (make up); Doug Besterman (conductor & orchestrations); Jeff Atmajian, Larry Blank, Brad Dechter, Aaron Heick, Marc Shaiman & Jonathan Tunick (orchestrations); Scott M. Riesett (music supervisor); Russ Barmus, Mark Graham – Joann Kane Music Service (music preparation); and James Sampliner (associate music director). The production stage manager was Peter Lawrence.

Bombshell was one of two musicals central to the plot of "Smash," which gave viewers a dramatically compacted (and often overly heightened) insider's glimpse of the making of a new Broadway musical.

It's also worth noting that the famously short-lived Broadway musical Marilyn – An American Fable played the Minskoff for 51 performances in the fall of 1983.

From the casting of Marilyn, to writing, re-writing, readings, rehearsals, out-of-town tryouts, back-biting interns and opening night, "Smash" featured a host of Broadway actors for its cast, including Ann Harada, Jeremy Jordan, Brian d'Arcy James, Andy Mientus, Krysta Rodriguez and more. Numerous Broadway figures also made cameos as themselves during the series' two-year run.

Playwright Theresa Rebeck created the series and wrote the pilot for "Smash," which set the backstage story of Bombshell in motion.

Check out a clip of Hilty performing a song from Bombshell below.


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