Well, well, well, the truth comes out. The Great White Way’s kinky, laced-up, leathered side has officially slinked its way into the public eye with the announcement of this year’s Tony Award nominations – specifically the 13 nominations for Kinky Boots – the musical about a failing shoe factory’s success when it starts producing fetish footwear. With music by Cyndi Lauper, the musical adaptation of the 2005 British film garners the greatest number of nominations of any show this season. Couple that with the over-$1 million it makes a week, and it’s clear the people want kink with their song and dance, and Broadway knows how to deliver.
But beyond the sex, rock and roll, and more sex, the nominations also reveal that movie musicals are the only musicals worth producing on Broadway. Best musical nominees include: Bring It On, The Musical, A Christmas Story, The Musical, Kinky Boots, and Matilda The Musical, thereby proving that if you once paid $12 to see this story in cinemas, then it’s worth paying $125 to see it live and with song, percussion accompaniment, and revolving, wooden sets.
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Matilda, the brand-new Broadway musical imported from the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford-upon-Avon (and later on London’s West End) and based on the Roald Dahl classic, has been buzzed about in New York for months, and last night’s opening night brought much praise from critics all over the country. Ben Brantley’s review in the New York Times begins with the word "rejoice," which, you know, is a pretty solid start, and the show has gotten great reviews in pretty much every other publication. (Of course, the show’s PR team knew that would happen.) So, basically, good luck finding tickets at a reasonable price. Now for the good news: maybe you can finally get into Book of Mormon?
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Matilda The Musical, based on the novel by British author/childhood demigod Roald Dahl, opened last week in New York City after originating on London’s West End. But would Broadway dare ask us boorish Americans to understand a British accent or turn of phrase? Pish tosh! (That’s British-speak for "Hell naw.")
The Telegraph UK reports that lyrics in Matilda The Musical will be Americanized, although the British accents affected by the American cast are staying. "There are a few lyrics that they’re just not hearing because they’re so dense and require thinning out," explained Tim Minchin, who wrote the score. It’s not clear which lyrics were rewritten exactly.
But, you know, stupid Americans. Elsewhere in the Telegraph piece, the journalist notes "British voices have proved notoriously problematic for American audiences in the past, with some films given subtitles." I beg your pardon, sir. We need subtitles to understand Mama June on Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, too.
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