This month, a new Broadway show will be opening at the Gerald Shoenfeld Theatre. It is a production that has seen a lot of stage time since 2015 on the West Coast and whose subject matter is a little touchy. It is the first musical the world has seen that is based on the events of 9/11. Its name, Come From Away, refers to its setting in Newfoundland, Canada where 38 planes holding almost 7,000 people were forced to land after the U.S. government shutdown the U.S. airspace. The musical, which is walking on marketing eggshells, could be the musical of the year.
Deterring From 9/11 Terminology
I decided to write about this new production after I watched the above NY1 interview with musical ensemble member, Joel Hatch. Prior to watching the interview, I had seen multiple marketing videos of music and audience quotes, none of which really touched on the fact that 9/11 is the musical’s central event. Hatch addressed the anxiety of the NY1 journalists about seeing a production around an event that is still pretty taboo in our society. He said that this musical is largely about how the entire world was affected by 9/11.
The show stars 12 actors who take on many roles to tell real stories of people who were stranded in Newfoundland after 9/11. The actors play Newfoundland residents as well as the “come from aways” (non-native visitors) to enact relationships that came out of the 5-day stay on the island. The music of the show is celtic-folk and represents the Irish immigrants who settled in Newfoundland in the early 1900s. It has eight band members who are also a big part of the story.
Though the marketing spends much more time dwelling on the show’s characters than the fact that it is a 9/11 musical, that is the draw to the show. Just wondering what political commentary will be made in the production, and wondering if it is a good telling could be enough to drive ticket sales. Also, its musical sound is current with the Broadway trend in folk music like that of Bright Star, Once, and The Bridges of Madison County.
Make up your mind about the show and order some group tickets from All Tickets today. If you’ve already seen the show, what did you think? Tell us on Twitter!