When Did Follies Open on Broadway

When Did Follies Open on Broadway

Do you know when Follies opened on Broadway? Prepare to be enlightened as we delve into the origins, casting, and preparations leading up to that momentous opening night. Discover the date when the curtains finally rose on this iconic musical, and learn about the initial reception and critical acclaim it received. Join us on this journey to uncover the legacy and continued influence of Follies on the world of Broadway.

The Genesis of Follies

When did the genesis of Follies occur? Well, it all began in the early 1970s when Stephen Sondheim, the renowned composer and lyricist, and James Goldman, the esteemed playwright, joined forces to create a groundbreaking musical. The inspiration for Follies came from Sondheim’s fascination with the decline of the traditional Broadway revue and his desire to explore the complex emotions and memories of aging performers.

The development process of Follies was a meticulous and collaborative effort. Sondheim and Goldman worked closely together to craft a compelling story that delved into the lives of former showgirls who reunite for one last hurrah in a crumbling theater. They wanted to capture the essence of nostalgia and regret, while also shedding light on the harsh realities of show business.

Through a series of workshops and workshops, the creative team refined the script and score, ensuring that every song and scene seamlessly fit into the narrative. Sondheim’s intricate and evocative music, combined with Goldman’s poignant and introspective dialogue, created a powerful and emotionally resonant experience for audiences.

The genesis of Follies was not just about creating a successful musical; it was about pushing the boundaries of storytelling and challenging the conventions of the genre. Sondheim and Goldman’s dedication to their craft and their willingness to take risks resulted in a theatrical masterpiece that continues to captivate audiences to this day.

Casting and Preparations for Opening Night

To prepare for opening night, the creative team of Follies meticulously casted and made necessary preparations. Pre-production planning is an essential part of any successful theater production, and Follies was no exception. The team carefully selected the cast members through a series of auditions, seeking individuals who could bring the complex characters to life. They considered not only the actors’ talent and experience but also their chemistry with each other.

The following table provides a glimpse into the casting process of Follies:

Sally DurantBernadette Peters
Phyllis RogersJan Maxwell
Buddy PlummerDanny Burstein
Ben StoneRon Raines
Carlotta CampionElaine Paige
Hattie WalkerMary Beth Peil

Once the cast was finalized, rehearsals began. This crucial stage allowed the actors to dive deeper into their characters and develop their relationships on stage. The creative team worked tirelessly to ensure that every scene, song, and dance number flowed seamlessly. They paid attention to every detail, from the set design to the costumes, aiming to create an immersive experience for the audience.

Through auditions, rehearsals, and meticulous pre-production planning, the creative team of Follies laid the foundation for a successful opening night. Their dedication and attention to detail ensured that the production would be a memorable one.

Opening Night: The Date Revealed

Once all the casting and preparations were complete, it was time for the highly anticipated opening night of Follies on Broadway. The behind the scenes efforts to make this night a success were meticulous and extensive. Here is a glimpse into the opening night preparations:

  1. Set Design: The set designers worked tirelessly to create a visually stunning backdrop for the production. They meticulously crafted every detail, ensuring that the set accurately portrayed the time period and setting of the show.
  2. Lighting and Sound: The lighting and sound technicians were responsible for creating the perfect ambiance and enhancing the audience’s experience. They carefully coordinated the lighting cues with the music and dialogue, creating a seamless and immersive production.
  3. Costume and Makeup: The costume designers and makeup artists played a crucial role in bringing the characters to life. They meticulously selected and tailored each costume, paying attention to the smallest details. The makeup artists skillfully transformed the actors into their respective characters, enhancing their performances.

As the opening night approached, the excitement and anticipation grew. All the hard work and dedication put into the behind the scenes preparations would soon be unveiled to the audience. The date for the opening night of Follies on Broadway was finally revealed, and everyone involved couldn’t wait to showcase their talents and make this a night to remember.

Initial Reception and Critical Acclaim

Upon its opening, Follies on Broadway received widespread acclaim and positive reception from both audiences and critics alike. The initial reaction to the musical was overwhelmingly positive, with many praising its innovative approach to storytelling and its stunning production values. Audiences were captivated by the intricate and complex plot, which explored themes of nostalgia, regret, and the passage of time. The show’s unique blend of pastiche and original music, along with its lavish sets and costumes, left a lasting impression on theatergoers.

Critics hailed Follies as a groundbreaking work that pushed the boundaries of traditional musical theater. They praised the show’s bold and daring exploration of the inner lives of its characters, as well as its sophisticated and intricate score by Stephen Sondheim. The impact of Follies on musical theater cannot be overstated. It paved the way for a new wave of musicals that delved into deeper and more complex themes, challenging the conventions of the genre.

Follies’ initial reception and critical acclaim solidified its status as a landmark production in the history of Broadway. Its influence can still be seen in the musicals that followed, as it set a new standard for storytelling and artistic ambition.

Legacy and Continued Influence

The impact of Follies on Broadway and the musical theater industry is still evident today, as it continues to influence and inspire future productions. Its lasting impact on the Broadway community and influence on modern musicals cannot be overstated.

  1. Revival Productions: Follies has been revived several times since its original run in 1971. Each revival has brought a fresh perspective to the show, showcasing its enduring appeal and relevance. These productions have allowed new generations of theatergoers to experience the brilliance of Follies and its impact on the Broadway stage.
  2. Homage and Inspiration: Follies has served as a source of inspiration for numerous other musicals. Its innovative storytelling techniques, complex characters, and exploration of themes such as regret and nostalgia have influenced subsequent works. It has paved the way for shows that delve into the complexities of human relationships and emotions, leaving a lasting imprint on the genre of musical theater.
  3. Community Engagement: Follies has fostered a sense of community within the Broadway industry. Its legacy has brought together actors, directors, and designers who have been involved in various productions over the years. The shared experience of working on or witnessing Follies has created a bond among those in the Broadway community, further solidifying its place in theater history.



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