In this poll, we asked you to tell us which theatrical productions you were most looking forward to seeing during the 1996-97 theatre season. We asked for replies from New York, across North America and beyond, and placed no restriction on what sort of theatre fans could write about.
As far as we have been able to ascertain, the reaction on Jekyll & Hyde was not part of an organized write-in campaign.
Here is a selection of the results. Playbill On-Line thanks all who took the time to write.
From Richie Schwartz:
Having seen Jekyll & Hyde ten times during it's pre-Broadway tour, I look forward to seeing the NEW J&H when it arrives on Broadway in March. With a new director and new ideas I anticipate this show to continue to be the powerful show it has been in the past. The music is absolutely dynamite and Linda Eder is going to be the newest star on the Broadway scene. She is fantastic.
I'd love to see "Whistle Down the Wind" because Andrew Lloyd Webber rarely disappoints.
Also, "Ragtime" in Toronto because it sounds like such fun & with a title like that, one assumes some great dancing!
Would love to go to Sydney, Australia to see "Crazy for You" when it opens on Nov. 9. It's star will be Jim Walton--a most talented 'song & dance man'. The role of Bobby Child was surely written with him in mind. He is brilliant!! (Saw the show 9 times, 6 with him in the role--nobody better!) New Yorkers should take more notice of the wonderful talent they have in their midst. Actually, they should be ecstatic that they live in such a city where the theatre has so much to offer.
From Rachel Brown, Dallas:
I am most looking forward to seeing Jekyll & Hyde on B'way. With Linda Eder, Robert Cuccioli, and Christiane Noll. This group deserves a shot on B'way and I hope it wipes the floor with the dribble that has been produced lately.
From Steve Gibbs:
Several things appeal to me in the upcoming season:
5. An INTIMATE Andrew Lloyd Webber [By Jeeves]? This I've got to see.
4. Schonberg and Boublil return (maybe) [Martin Guerre]. They're two-for-two in quality and at the box office. Can they make it three in a row?
3. The 42nd Street revival should arrive. I can¼t wait to see those two old/new theaters.
2. Alan Menken's returns to Broadway with a new piece [King David]? I hope so.
1. But with all that is new in 97, I cannot imagine anything more thrilling or heartfelt than Noise/Funk and Rent. I only get to New York once every two or three years, but I just might put myself in hock just to get back to see those two shows again while they still have most or even some of the original casts.
Long live the 95-96 season!!!
From Gary Ragazzo:
Personally, I can't wait to see two things: Jekyll & Hyde and A Christmas Carol (Madison Square Garden). I saw J&H on tour twice and I loved it. I especially can't wait to see what theater is chosen and the effect of the new director. As for A Christmas Carol, I just hope that Terrence Mann will reprise his role as Scrooge. If not, it's still a must see.
From: Walt McGrath, NYC:
Chicago having been fortunate to see it at Encores. A return visit is a must.
Davis Gaines in Whistle Down the Wind...at last he gets to record an original cast album.
1776 at the Roundabout.
Seeing who is next up at Sunset Blvd.
Prayfully, Melissa Errico in a musical, the return of Judy Kuhn in something, as well as Bernadette Peters.
Applause and Stephanie Powers as Margo Channing.
A new Kander and Ebb musical.
I'll let everyone else worry about the non-musical theatre.
I live in Los Angeles and heard of a new production of William Finn's IN TROUSERS, opening in November at the St. Genesius Theatre. I am a big fan of FALSETTOS, and now I finally get to see the first part!
From Scott Sears:
No question about it....Frank Wildhorn & Leslie Bricusse's Jekyll & Hyde. I saw it during its national tour and can't wait for it's Broadway debut. This show features great music and acting and is truly an original. Broadway needs more fresh material instead of the annual "let's revive this" show, and Jekyll & Hyde is a breath of fresh air. Cuccioli's performance in the dual roles of Jekyll and Hyde is truly amazing and the arrival of Linda Eder to New York will surely set Broadway spinning.
I am really looking forward to the excellent Arden Theatre company's (Philadelphia, PA) near-annual production of a Sondheim musical. This May they will do COMPANY, which hasn't been done in this area for many, many years. They are one of the most innovative and talented companies in the area, they did a wonderful "Sunday in the Park.." a few years back, and I know that COMPANY will get a rare treatment from this group of people. On a lighter note, "Schoolhouse Rock Live", a hit off Broadway last year encompassing many songs from the Sat. morn clips of old, will come to the area for the first time in October to the Society Hill Playhouse, where "Nunsense" premiered. Also looking forward to this.
The show I can't wait to see is Jekyll & Hyde, scheduled to open in previews March 1997. The music is fabulous, Linda Eder's talent is phenomenal, and I've heard rave reviews about the rest of the cast of the tour, many of whom will (hopefully) be coming to Broadway.
From Brian Pier, Illinois:
I am excited about seeing Rent. (Hope I can get tickets for December in NYC.)
I already ordered tickets to Candide - one of my all-time favorite musicals! Andrea Martin will be PERFECT!
Faust in Chicago and Chicago in New York (go figure!) are other productions I will definitely see. If I can get tickets, King David and David Copperfield will also be must-see productions.
My list is starting to sound like a "Same Name" clue from "Wheel of Fortune."
Has there been another show that has garnered so much attention on the Internet prior to it's Broadway debut? My best guess is no. For this and a multitude of other reasons I look forward to Jekyll & Hyde. What incarnation will it take. What will be left in - what taken out? Will Linda Eder be able to sustain an audience for more than a week or so? I'm a devoted fan with the other (forgive me newsgroup folks) "Jekkies" on the Net. Can R. L. Stevenson find a place amongst Eliot, H.C. Anderson, Victor Hugo, Puccini, Wilder, and all the rest?
For my annual '97 theater trip to NYC, I hope to see my favorite actress, Sarah Jessica Parker, in "Once Upon a Mattress."
Here in South Florida, I'm eagerly awaiting the April, 1997 world premiere of Jimmy Buffett and Herman Wouk's collaboration on a musical version of Wouk's book, "Don't Stop the Carnival" at the Coconut Grove Playhouse in Miami.
From DANIELA STINGER:
There's no question. The Frank Wildhorn/Leslie Bricusse Musical, Jekyll and Hyde will be part of the NY trip this coming year.
From Brad Baker:
Anything at [Broadway's] Roundabout Theatre!!! 997 Clowns aside (that's A Thousand Clowns - minus Robert Klein, Gene Saks and Jane Adams), the Roundabout is producing the most consistently surprising and vibrant work in the City.
From Traci L. Boles:
My number 1 choice is Jekyll & Hyde - the musical thriller and absolutely anything with Tommy Tune in it.
My number 2 choice is Rent.
From D. Low, New York:
The two plays I'm looking forward to seeing the most this season feature a mother and her daughter: Vanessa Redgrave in Antony and Cleopatra and Natasha Richardson in Cabaret. I'm especially eager to see Cabaret again--I saw the original Broadway cast and always thought Sally Bowles needed a stronger leading lady. Richardson should do nicely. Though I don't know if she can sing. She was in High Society in London but I believe she was praised more for her acting than singing. Of course, seeing Redgrave on stage is always exciting. I can't remember when a major revival of A&C was done in New York.
From: Brian Graham:
First there is "Whistle Down the Wind", for which I stood in line for two hours to get tickets [in Washington DC]. I'll be front row center on Dec 21. Secondly, there is "Man of La Mancha". Having just missed the tour with Robert Goulet, I will now settle for a performance at the Lazy Suzan, a fine dinner theatre in Woodbridge VA, where they will be doing this show in Oct. Thirdly there is my very own production of "The Glass Menagerie" by my absolute favorite writer, Tennessee Williams. I'll be directing this at my high school in Nov.
From: Kristina L. Brown:
By far the most exciting thing coming out this year for me is the Broadway version of Jekyll & Hyde (Wildhorn & Bricusse version). I saw the show while it was touring and can't wait to have the opportunity to see it again.
I also plan on seeing Les Miz again!!!
Of course I'm looking forward to a play coming to B'way! Jekyll & Hyde. It rules. With Robert Cuccioli as Jekyll/Hyde (of course) I wouldn't miss it for the world!
New Show-- Steel Pier maybe?
Revival-- Chicago which I saw at the concert version; I eagerly anticipate a fuller production.
From TOM PAULINI:
Being an Actor I'm most excited about PERFORMING at probably one of the best theatres in New England! This year is a growing year for this theatre! This Theatre is the Harwich Junior Theatre in Harwich MA! Don't be fooled by the name! I am currently performing in an unconventional, unjuvenile production of Shakespeare's "As You Like It" where the cast is costumed in bell-bottoms, corduroys, platform shoes! The "soundtrack" to the show is techno hip hop. And the season doesn't end there it goes on to include a big budget "Little Shop of Horrors" (for which I will also be performing in) to "Medea", "Godspell", "Really Rosie", A new musical version of "A Tale of Two Cities" by Wendy Kesselman, a local award-winning playwright whose local production of the award-winning "Butcher's Daughter" was directed by the Artistic Director of the HJT, Nina Schuessler and was workshopped still under the direction of Schuessler, at Circle Repertory in New York. If you are ever in the neighborhood stop by and I'm sure you will fall in love with it as I did. I'm just a performer who has put his heart and soul into the HJT since he was 8, I'm not director of publicity or president or anything!
I am looking forward to this being a season in which historic Broadway theatres get a boost. I am currently involved in a project to help save the Biltmore Theatre, and perhaps others as well. Anybody who wants to contact me on this can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
From Janet Ayers:
That's easy! Jekyll & Hyde. The music is great, I love the soundtrack and it's a wonderful piece of work done by all.
Well, my first response is to say, ANYTHING WITH NATHAN LANE!!!
Second response is to say, anything that grabs my heart and seems as if it'll never let go!!