22 November 2006

bus & truck is alive if not well

years ago most Broadway hits went on tour. the primary tours featurd either the original stars or big-name replacements & playd at least a week in major cities. for me that was the Hanna Theater in Cleveland. there was also something known as bus & truck companies. these playd for a nite or 2 in secondary cities with casts of those on their way up or down but never on top. for example   I saw "Butterflies Are Free" at Akron Civic Theater featuring Jan Sterling whose Hollywood star was dimming & John Spencer before he found tv stardom. somewhere along the way Broadway had fewer hits & much of the touring ceasd.

when I heard there was a bus & truck company coming to Santa Fe I immediately got a ticket. last nite's production was "Camelot." now this was the first musical I ever saw on Broadway. Kennedy was president & the show's star was Julie Andrews. so I wasn't expecting much this time. & that's what I got. it was a charmless production with a dull cast in K Mart costumes. imagine a paunchy Arthur without authority   a Lancelot lacking dash. the only sparkle came from Mollie Vogt-Welch as Guenevere. but as dreary as the experience was I'm pleasd that the tradition continues & I hope better companies will come to town.

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