Thursday, October 17, 2013

Buddy Holly: A History of the Jukebox Musical

On Tuesday I attended the Opening Night performance of BUDDY: THE BUDDY HOLLY STORY.  BUDDY, which first hit Broadway in 1990, was the very first “jukebox musical.”  Since then, the jukebox musical has become a trend in musical theatre. 
BUDDY was soon followed by SMOKEY JOE'S CAFE, and it included all of Lieber and Stoller's most popular songs like “Hound Dog,” "Jailhouse Rock," and "Stand By Me," among others.  Then came MAMMA MIA, featuring all of the great hits of ABBA.  The Tony Award winning story of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons followed suit with the toe-tapping show JERSEY BOYS, and - most recently - MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET hit the scene with Sun Studios legends Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Carl Perkins.  But it all started with BUDDY, and with that, a new genre was born, providing new productions for Broadway and for Broadway companies touring across the country. 
Intertwined throughout BUDDY is the story of his meteoric rise to fame and his life, which tragically ended after only 18 months into his career.  Still, at its core, BUDDY is really more of a concert – emphasizing on the tunes you know and love.  The show takes you back to the 50’s where you can be a part of musical history.
BUDDY runs through Sunday night at the Orpheum Theatre.  Great seats are still available and can be purchased at the Orpheum Box Office at 901-525-3000 or online at www.orpheum-memphis.comI hope to see you there!
Pat Halloran
Orpheum President and CEO

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