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Xanadu (musical)

The meaning of «xanadu (musical)»

Xanadu is a musical comedy with a book by Douglas Carter Beane and music and lyrics by Jeff Lynne and John Farrar, based on the 1980 film of the same name, which was, in turn, inspired by the 1947 Rita Hayworth film Down to Earth.[1] The title refers to Xanadu, the site of the Mongolian emperor Kublai Khan's summer palace.

The musical opened on Broadway in 2007 and ran for over 500 performances. It earned an Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Musical and a Drama Desk Award for Best Book. It was also nominated for Tony Awards for Best Musical and Best Book. The US Tour officially began on December 15, 2009, in the Orange County Performing Arts Center.

The 1980 film on which Xanadu is based barely broke even at the box office and received uniformly unfavorable reviews, but the soundtrack was a commercial hit, as were several of the songs singularly. Although the film was nominated for six Razzies, winning one for worst director, it became a cult classic. Announcements that the film would be adapted as a Broadway show drew skepticism and derision, even from Carter Beane, who adapted the script for the musical.[1]

According to Beane, in rewriting the script for the musical, he was influenced not only by the 1980 Xanadu film, but also by the 1981 fantasy film Clash of the Titans, prompting him to add the subplot "in which Kira’s jealous sister-muses doom her to fall in love with a mortal, incurring the wrath of their father, Zeus."[1] He has noted that the stage musical focuses more on the Greek mythology plotlines but has "a lot of [parody] references to the movie."[2]

The score retains the hits from the film and also includes new arrangements by Eric Stern of "I'm Alive", "Magic", "Suddenly", and "Dancin'", as well as integrating two classic Electric Light Orchestra songs, "Strange Magic" and "Evil Woman", plus Farrar's "Have You Never Been Mellow".

The musical was first given a workshop production and backers' audition at the Minetta Lane Theatre in Greenwich Village, New York City, in January 2007, featuring performances by Jane Krakowski, Tony Roberts, and Cheyenne Jackson. Readings of the stage version had previously been held on April 21 and August 3, 2006, at New World Stages in Manhattan.[3]

Krakowski and Jackson were cast in their respective leading roles of Clio/Kira and Sonny Malone for the Broadway run, but both eventually dropped out. Jane cited her TV shooting schedule on the NBC show 30 Rock, while Jackson cited post-production commitments for his film Hysteria.[4]

Xanadu began previews on Broadway on May 23, 2007, at the Helen Hayes Theatre and opened on July 10, 2007. The production was directed by Christopher Ashley and choreographed by Dan Knechtges, with sets by David Gallo, lighting by Howell Binkley, costumes by David Zinn, sound by T. Richard Fitzgerald and Carl Cassella, and projections by Zachary Borovay. The key producers were Robert Ahrens, Tara Smith, and Brian Swibel.[5]

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