The cast of Broadway’s Hair is ditching NYC on Oct. 11 to perform at the National Equality March in D.C. Is that as big a deal as the press is making it out to be?
Yes, if you’re the type who cares about the business of Broadway.
When it comes to the grand stage, there are a number of ways Broadway types can take a stand.
There’s the personal plea, the way Cheyenne Jackson promotes amfAR. There’s the the industry wide tactic, the way Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS fundraises. And now with Hair, the full cast way: Leaving behind up to $150,000 in Sunday matinee ticket sales to hop on a bus to join Cleve Jones & Co. for a little swaggering by the White House.
That’s big bucks when you consider Hair operates in an industry that saw more than a dozen shows close in the last year because of financial pitfalls. But then Hair producer Oskar Eustis and general manager Joey Parnes got on board with star Gavin Creel’s (pictured, left) idea to head to D.C. and, as the New York Times has us believing, all of Hair‘s other producers joined the cause. (If you’re unfamiliar, a single Broadway show can have dozens of producers, who all hold a financial interest in the show, which means there’s lot of convincing to do when it comes to ditching revenues. But then Hair decided to add a special Monday performance to make up lost dollars.)
It’s a fantastic sentiment, and a phenomenal move by members of an industry so committed to the gays. (Broadway employs half of our kind, after all.) But to be sure, having the cast of Hair at the National Equality March will not drum up the type of publicity that, say, having the cast of ABC’s Desperate Housewives would.