I had to give a little TL to a client who wanted to take the play to Broadway. It wasn’t that I didn’t think the play was good.
I just didn’t think it belonged on Broadway.
“But that’s where it has to go!”
“Why,” I said.
“Because I want it to be a success!”
Broadway is a very unique place. With a very unique audience. With 65% of its attendees coming from around the country, it takes a very specific show to survive.
And, honestly, that doesn’t always mean that only the best shows are the most successful ones.
The fact is, not every show is a Broadway show . . . and that’s ok. Shows can be successful in a lot of different ways nowadays (and yesterdays, actually). Just ask Maury Yeston and Arthur Kopit, whose Phantom has racked up thousands of performances (and hundreds of thousands of dollars, I’m sure) at theaters all over the world, yet has never been seen inside the city walls. Just ask John Cariani, whose Almost Maine is one of the most licensed plays in the country, and only ran for a few weeks Off-Broadway.
So, I’ll say it again . . . not every show belongs on Broadway.
It’s just one potential destination . . . one path that you can venture down should you so choose. And sure, it’s “The Great White Way” and has a mystique about it that makes us all want to get there. But it doesn’t define success.
And recognizing that your show may not be best suited for its boards could be the most successful thing you do in its development.
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