Tony-nominated ‘Scottsboro Boys’ coming to Old Globe in 2012


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‘The Scottsboro Boys’ was this week’s Tony Awards surprise, receiving 12 nominations including best musical, despite having been a box-office flop. While New Yorkers have missed their chance to experience the John Kander-Fred Ebb production, those of us on the West Coast will be able to see it next year when it plays at the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego.

Producer Barry Weissler and director-choreographer Susan Stroman confirmed that ‘Scottsboro’ will run at the Old Globe in 2012, and that the production will also travel to the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco. Other cities are planned but not yet confirmed.


‘Scottsboro’ is scheduled to begin performances in San Diego in late April 2012.

Stroman received two nominations for ‘Scottsboro’ on Tuesday for directing and choreographing the musical. The show was also nominated for the Kander-Ebb score, David Thompson’s book and three acting awards.

‘Scottsboro’ is a postmodern retelling of the notorious 1931 case in which nine young men were accused of rape. The musical uses minstrelsy to portray characters that are white and black. The musical closed after just 49 regular performances at the Lyceum Theatre in New York. Before arriving on Broadway last fall, the show was produced off-Broadway at the Vineyard Theatre and at the Guthrie Theatre in Minneapolis.

Times theater critic Charles McNulty wrote in his review that Broadway was a strange fit for the show. ‘Theatergoers expecting Broadway sentimentality or documentary solemnity are in for some expensive cognitive dissonance,’ he wrote.


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Photo (top): Forrest McClendon and the cast of ‘The Scottsboro Boys.’ Credit: Paul Kolnick

Photo credit (bottom): American Theatre Wing