I’m not the only bloggin’ Producer.
For a few weeks, Chicago Producer and stunt-caster extraordinaire Barry Weissler was blogging on Yahoo Broadway. Unfortunately, they seemed to have removed it (let’s start a rumor that Barry insisted that it be taken down, shall we?).
It was pretty neat – Barry talked about how how he started off doing children’s theater with Robert De Niro, he talked about his relationship with Ben Brantley and more.
Barry is one of the best. During the decade of corporate producing on Broadway (the mid/late 90s), Barry and Fran were one of the only Mom & Pop organizations consistently doing it, and making money. What they’ve done with Chicago is nothing short of a producing miracle.
So how do they do it? And what can we learn from it?
If you look at their resume, only four of the nineteen shows they are credited with producing weren’t revivals. One of those four shows was a jukebox musical, and another was Falsettos, which was the juxtaposition of two previously existing works, which leaves only two original pieces.
The Weisslers have chosen to mitigate their risk by making sure they start with material already accepted by the public and build an exciting production around it.
Look at their first few shows . . . you can’t start with a better playwright than Bill himself.
Not the most adventuresome model, but it sure has gotten them one killer apartment (Yahoo didn’t take down the best part of the blog: the video).
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Ken created one of the first Broadway podcasts, recording over 250 episodes over 7 years. It features interviews with A-listers in the theater about how they “made it”, including 2 Pulitzer Prize Winners, 7 Academy Award Winners and 76 Tony Award winners. Notable guests include Pasek & Paul, Kenny Leon, Lynn Ahrens and more.