Bandstand on Broadway has scheduled its last performance for September 17th and its got a lot of us pretty bummed and here’s why.
Firstly, in my opinion this show matters so much. It’s beautiful, historically groundbreaking, powerful and even fun.
Somehow the creative team has managed to marry Golden Age theatre and Contemporary themes and made it into a beautiful bundle of joy (and tears, let’s be honest here.).
It is also the first Broadway show to ever be 6 Certified. It means that veterans are being accurately portrayed and represented in the media. (Please take the time to read up on Got Your 6). This is big news for Broadway. And it is truly a salute to the wonderful writers, the director and to the talents of the cast. They give an honest portrayal of these characters and the struggles they face in a post WW2 America.
Not to mention that the main cast have to be QUADRUPLE threats. They have to sing, act, dance AND play their own instruments. That is SO very badass. Even the actress playing Carole King in Beautiful does not accompany herself or her fellow players.
This is a revolutionary Broadway show in so many ways.
Dear Evan Hansen and Next To Normal have been immortalized and become huge because they address mental illness.
Bandstand addresses mental illness in returning vets and shines a light on PTSD, OCD, Survivor’s Guilt and more.
I have seen some posts which I wanted to address : these posts are saying that Bandstand is neither diverse or representational.
I will agree that it is a very white show. There isn’t a lot of racial diversity and representation.
There are many forms of diversity.
Bandstand addresses issues never addressed before on the Broadway stage. They are showing a group of people what their lives are like. Bandstand tells its veterans, military officers and their families and spouses; “We see you. We understand you. Thank you.”
That IS representation.
This show represents some of the best and brightest of a country : the men and women who fought and are still fighting for your right to diversity and representation and the right to have and voice these opinions.
Bandstand is a story that deserves to be heard and needs to be told.
At its core, beyond the military stories, it’s about anyone who has struggled and felt lost , and who have found solace in music.
Music saves lives.
Can’t we all agree to that?
Laura Osnes attends the ‘Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons: Art Of The In-Between’ Costume Institute Gala at Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 1, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images For Entertainment Weekly)