Monday, June 09, 2008

Broadway Monday

Taboo
Set in London in the 1980s, this show follows the decadent lives of Leigh Bowery and George O'Dowd (the future Boy George) and those who frequent the club Taboo.

Most of the show takes place in Taboo, the former location of what was once the city's hottest dance club. The show is based on the New Romantic scene of the 1980s; the life and career of colorful pop singing sensation Boy George, who rose to prominence in the '80s with his band Culture Club with such tunes as "Karma Chameleon" and "Do You Really Want to Hurt Me?"; the performance artist Leigh Bowery, Boy George's friend Marilyn and club host Steve Strange from Visage. The show premiered in London at the newly opened Venue Theatre on January 29, 2002. Rosie O'Donnell was so enamoured with it that she decided to finance a Broadway production. After 16 previews, it opened on November 13, 2003 at the Plymouth Theatre where, hampered by mostly scathing reviews, it closed after 100 performances. The cast, included Boy George (credited under his real name, George O'Dowd), Euan Morton, Raul Esparza, Sarah Uriarte Berry, and Jeffrey Carlson. O'Donnell reportedly lost her entire $10 million investment in the project.

I didn't get to see this show before it closed, but I was able to secure a bootleg copy (shhh) and although the storyline was a bit odd, the talent of the cast and the beauty of the music is hard to ignore. The talented actor Euan Morton who plays Boy George, is a wonderful find as far as voices are concerned. wow.

This show is a classic example of Broadway politics and clicks. If it hadn't been trendy to hate Rosie, and New York liked Boy a bit more, we'd still be seeing this cult favorite shine. It did very well in London, but was shut down quickly in the States despite the resounding positive themes of individualism and acceptance.

Viva La Difference

3 comments:

Revday said...

I really enjoyed this review/info. I always felt kind of sorry for Boy George. Such a sad waif, and such a statement of cultural confusion cum artistry. New York can chew up the good and the bad.

DISCOchick said...

I love Boy George... I just wish someone had told me about 'Taboo' earlier so I could've gone to see it... I'm certain I would've enjoyed it...

DISCOchick said...

great review of Taboo.