The upcoming Broadway musical "Nice Work if You Can Get It" may have a familiar whiff to Connecticut audiences.
This new-old Gershwin show bears a striking resemblance to "They All Laughed" which was also marketed as a new-old Gershwin musical when it premiered at the
“Nice Work If You Can Get It” — which stars Kelli O’Hara and
In a side note, "They All Laughed" was the second time Goodspeed went to the "Oh, Kay!" well. It produced an all-black version in the '80s, which later transferred to Broadway and was the last show produced by
"Of course we contributed to its development," says Michael Price, executive produced of Goodspeed Musicals, "but our deal had a time factor [in which to further develop the show]."
Theaters which initially produce a new show that goes on to be done elsewhere can receive a percentage of the profits as the show's original developer. "But it's not for us to claim now."
Christopher Ashley directed the Goodspeed show which Joey McKneely choreographed. James Ludwig and Marla Schaffel had the leading roles. Also featured were Donna English,
The Gershwin estate no doubt is eager to strike gold with another re-packaging of tunes from its catalogue, especially with the copyrights clock going tick…tick…tick. It's worked two times before. The first with 1983's "My One and Only" (based on "Funny Face") which has a nice Broadway run with
But “They All Laughed” received mixed notices from the critics when it played Goodspeed in that fateful year od 2001 — though it had a good run in
Variety's Markland Taylor wrote that the production the show "can't make up its mind as to whether it's a 'new Gershwin musical' or a spoof of one…Joe DiPietro's new book is inferior to the Bolton-Wodehouse original, so what's the point? Ditto the new score, which is made up of too many mediocre Gershwin number…The results are not only tiresome but actively annoying in their invalidation of the Gershwins' genius."
Alvin Klein in the Connecticut edition of
The Goodspeed production never moved on but there were stirrings over the years that the Gershwin Estate was trying to get another new pastiche going.
“Nice Work If You Can Get It” begins previews March 29 and opens April 24 at the Imperial Theatre on Broadway. The show is directed and choreographed by
I hope the Goodspeed folks at least get invited to the opening night party.