Why you tune into the Olympics, and what that has to do with Broadway.
The Winter (Olympics) are coming.
In just a few short months, we’ll be watching Olympians from all across the globe strut their stuff on skis and skates (and also in that crazy curling sport that I still don’t quite understand).
So why do we watch the Olympics?
Because it’s the absolute best athletes in the world, doing what they do, certainly better than us, and better than 99.99% of the population as well.
They jump higher, skate faster, and have us constantly wondering, “How the @#$% does anyone DO that?”
And I’d bet, that if you think back to some of your greatest memories of seeing shows, you’d say the same thing about some of the performances you saw.
Great shows are filled with great performances of actors doing things that haven’t been done before . . .singing higher, dancing faster. And these incredible displays of talent make us want to jump to our feet and hold up a sign that says, “10!”
Broadway is the Theatrical Olympics. We just ask our athlete-actors to perform their routines 8x a week . . . for years.
What this means when we create shows, is that we have to look for opportunities for our actors to showcase their Olympic sized skills. Because that’s what audiences come to see. Shows can’t consist of parts that actors coast their way through. No way. If they’re not doing back-flips, then forget it, the audience will change the channel to something else that amazes them.
Great, jaw-dropping performances, are as much a part of a great production as a great set and a great score.
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