Show Boat Wasn’t Slow Boat.


Here’s some interesting trivia:

Edna Ferber’s novel, Show Boat, was first published in 1926.

The musical version of Show Boat opened on Broadway in December, 1927.

Ahhh, come again?  From the published novel to a fully produced musical in how long?  When was the last time this happened in the modern theater?

It hasn’t.  Books go to movie companies first now.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve tried to option a book and found that the rights have been wrapped up with the movie deal, or that the agent is afraid to release the stage rights because they are “holding out” for a film option.

This is another reason for the recent surge in the adaptation of movies into musicals.  The movie companies are sitting on all the cards, sometimes not even wanting to play the game.

Another interesting tidbit . . . while doing some research on Show Boat, I was reminded that there were a few songs that were not written specifically for it, but were popular tunes interpolated into the score.

Does that mean it’s a jukebox musical?  😉


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