Wanna see a couple of Producers get naked? Here’s how.

Either this blog will turn into one of my most read entries because of the title, or the title will conjure up images of a naked David Merrick or Florenz Ziegfeld and make people want to throw up all over the keyboards.

But I’m not talking about Merrick or Ziegfeld.

I’m talking about Julie and Martha.

Julie and Martha are two of the Producers of David Stallings’s Barrier Island, which opens April 30th. These two flirtin’ fundraisers have taken to a little game they came up with called Producer Off, that’s bound to raise a few eyebrows and some bucks at the same time.

It’s simple.  There are photos of each Producer online.  For each chunk of cash that each Producer raises through online donations, the OTHER Producer has to take off a piece of clothing, take a new photo, and put it on the web for all the world (and their mothers) to see.

It’s fun, competitive, and also pretty safe (a few quick calculations will reveal that the ladies are wearing enough accoutrements to never have to reveal too much of what’s underneath (oven mitts?)).

But that won’t prevent Julie and Martha from getting attention from people who had never heard of them before, and donations from people who never would have donated to their cause before.

In fact, I contributed some cash to both of their accounts.

But I did it to support their risk-taking, get-the-money-at-all-costs, out-of-the-box, passion for the theater.

Yeah. Yeah. That’s why I did it.

To see Julie and Martha, click here.

———-

PLAY “WILL IT RECOUP” TODAY!  WIN A KINDLE! Only 2 days left!

Click here to play!

Leading is not misleading.

In late November, the London production of the stage adaptation of The Shawshank Redemption got busted for putting a quote on their marquee that said the following:

“A superbly gripping, genuinely uplifting drama.” – Charles Spencer, Daily Telegraph

Good quote, right?

Only one problem . . . the quote was referring to the FILM version of Shawshank, and the reviewer had gone on to say, “In almost every respect, the stage version is inferior to the movie.”

Ballsy move on behalf of the Producers, right?

I’m a big fan of pushing the envelope, especially when it comes to promotion.  On the first poster of The Awesome 80s Prom, we put a quote on the top that said, “I’ve Had The Time Of My Life!”  We listed the source as, “The Awesome 80s Movie, Dirty Dancing.

But there is such a thing as going too far, and this certainly qualifies.  David Merrick’s Subways stunt had a wink to it (and hopefully The Prom’s did too), which made them work.  The Shawshank stunt is just about pulling the wool over a customer’s eyes.

And it gives us all a bad name.

Although, I guess it did get the show some publicity.  And I am writing about it here, and I bet that a lot of you never even knew there was a stage version of Shawhank in London, so . . . dang it, they succeeded in some fashion.

However, this stunt looks like the prods could get in some legal trouble as well, and more importantly could cause bigger problems for the Producers that have much smarter and savvier ideas in the future.

And that makes this stunt just selfish.

Oh, and for a future blog?  Why the bollocks are Londoners fascinated with play versions of successful movies?  Rain Man, Shawshank, When Harry Met Sally, etc.?  Think the movie companies would ever allow those productions here?  I bet not (and I’m sorta happy about that), but I am oh so curious how one would sell.  Your thoughts?

Advice from an Expert: Vol. XV. The BROTHER of the original Producer of Finian’s Rainbow chimes in.

On Monday, I posted an article written by Lee Sabinson back in the 50s.  My press agent remembered that Lee’s brother, Harvey, was just a tad bit involved in the commercial theater as well.  Yep, Harvey Sabinson worked at The League for twenty years, including a stint as its Executive Director, and worked on Broadway for over fifty!  (Just look at those credits!)

A press agent by trade, Mr. Sabinson’s most famous client was . . . Mr. David Merrick.

That means that Mr. Sabinson worked on the Subways are for Sleeping ad campaign, which has been much-ballyhooed on this blog  (you may remember that we had some feedback on the blog from another of the creators of that campaign).

Well, my press agent sent Mr. Sabinson my blog, and like any great former flack, he responded right away (if only all of our current press agents would respond so quickly).

His response was so fitting, that I thought I’d post it here.  So, here’s another expert, giving it to us straight.

Thanks so much for sending me the souvenir book piece written by my brother almost sixty-three years. I remember it well. I was an ATPAM apprentice to Samuel J. Friedman on the original production. Last week, while in New York, I was Jack Viertel’s guest at a performance of the show, which evoked a lot of memories.

But what amazed me was a list of about twenty producers presenting a revival of a show that only two guys did so long ago (and one of them was only an investor). I also bought two tickets for one of my sons for a total of $244. The original orchestra top was $6.90 of which 90 cents was tax.

You’re not the only one who thinks that both of those things are “amazing,” Mr. Sabinson.

—–

The 2nd Annual Producers Perspective Social is tomorrow, and it’s SOLD OUT!

Free drink!  Door prizes include tickets, merch, and a Kindle!

Click here for details.(please note, due to overwhelming demand the Social will now at be Hurley’s Saloon)

10 Great gifts for the Producer in your life. [UPDATED]

We’ve updated this blog with the best Broadway gifts on the market in 2018. Enjoy!


Happy Black Friday!

People are in line and online today, looking for great holiday gift ideas for their family and friends.  But what do you get for that odd bird in your nest that is or wants to be a Producer?

Here is a list of 10 gift ideas for those folks with shows on the boards, or for the Producers-to-be out there.

And if you are a Producer, just email this list to your family and friends and tell them that it’s their civic responsibility to do their part in stimulating the economy . . . by buying you everything on it.

1. Be A Broadway Star Board Game

Yes, full disclaimer, this one is mine.  But it’s such a no-brainer gift for anyone who loves Broadway, it’s always top of my mind for Broadway gifts.  The game itself is like Life with a dash of charades . . . but Broadway style.  Win Tonys, Audition for Wicked, and the person with the most fans wins.  Fun, right?  There’s a reason it’s the best selling Broadway gift on Amazon every year.  But don’t take my word for it.  If you want some objective advice, go check out the 55 FIVE star reviews on Amazon.

2.  A Playbill Binder!

Playbills are probably the one thing on the planet that is given away free, yet is priceless to a Broadway fan (especially a NEW Broadway fan). Protect them in this binder that includes free sheet protectors!

3. A Broadway Puzzle of your favorite Broadway Stars!

If you’re like me, then holiday times at the parents’ house includes puzzles. So forget about the ones with windmills and skylines, how about one featuring Broadway stars!

4. Broadway Nail Decals

Need a stocking stuffer or a Broadway Secret Santa gift? This is it because it’ll come in under ANY budget.

5.  The Abominable Showman:  The Unauthorized David Merrick Biography

David Merrick is to Broadway shows as Henry Ford is to automobiles.  Read all about how Merrick became the powerhouse that he was.  This bio is like a training manual of both what to do and what not to do.

6. The Broadway Coloring Book

Created by my own Director of Marketing, Monica Hammond (I have such a multi-talented staff), The Broadway Coloring Book is available as an instant download PDF for you to print, color and enjoy right away or gift to friends! This 10-page coloring book features hand-drawn scenes from some classic Broadway shows, including Mamma MiaChicagoCabaretGypsy and more! Color the costumes and sets of Broadway as many times as you like! Download your copy now!

7.  Gift Cards

No list would be complete without suggesting you get tickets for the Broadway lover in your life. Unfortunately, we don’t make this easy on Broadway.  You can’t get gift cards for specific shows, but you can get Telecharge Gift Cards and Ticketmaster Gift Cards.

8. Anything from Broadway Cares

Give the gift that gives back when you get anything from BC/EFA.  From their Broadway snow globes to Broadway ornaments to a 1992 Jerry Mitchell Broadway Bares “solo strip” DVD (hubba, hubba) these gifts will make the giver and the getter feels good all over.

9. Once On This Island Cast Album

If you love Ahrens and Flaherty, if you love great musical theater period, you’ll love this Tony-award winning cast, and so will the theater lover in your life.

10.  The iPhone

No list of mine is ever complete without the iPhone.  Sure, AT&T sucks more than Moose Murders, but carrying music demos of shows in a killer web phone that has an app-game where you can produce We Will Rock You is something I’m telling Santa that I want.

Advice from an Expert: Vol. XI. The guy who placed the Subways are for Sleeping ad speaks!

Oh how I love the internet.  It gives you the chance to speak to so many people that you would otherwise never have the chance to, and learn from them.

Perfect example . . .

A few weeks ago, I posted a blog about The Balloon Boy and his dad’s stupidity.  In the same blog I referenced the infamous David Merrick Subways are for Sleeping stunt.

Today I got an email from a gentleman who was the Production Director at The Blaine Thompson Company, a powerhouse ad agency who repped Broadway shows from 1938 – 1977 including the original productions of Gypsy, Pippin, Hair, A Chorus Line, and yes, Subways are for Sleeping.

This gentleman was directly involved with the Ad Heard ‘Round The World, and with Mr. Merrick himself, and was kind enough to share his story in an email to me.

I convinced him to put the story into a comment on the blog itself for all of you to enjoy.

Here it is.  A piece of theatrical history, brought to you by the power of the internet and by people willing to share their story (which is what theater is all about, isn’t it?).

Click here to and scroll down to read the comment from Ron.

SIGN UP BELOW TO NEVER MISS A BLOG

X