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The new American musical: How the musical has changed to attract a new audience?

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  1. Introduction.
  2. Musicals during times of war and economic hardship.
  3. Fall in audience.
  4. Writers, composers, and lyricists adaptation of the musical to attract younger and more diverse audiences.
  5. Rock musicals and the jukebox musical.
  6. The feature film musical a descendant of the musical theater.
  7. Parody musicals.
  8. Conclusion.

Throughout the greater part of the twentieth century the American musical has entertained audiences of all ages and backgrounds. The musical has become a reflection of American life: sometimes tragic, somewhat unpredictable, but always persevering. The American musical has taken many shapes throughout the years, constantly adapting to keep pace with the time and the demands of changing audiences. Musical theater originally formed from comic opera and the operetta. It also added elements of the burlesque and variety shows, borrowed the idea of large company numbers from grand opera, adapted popular music styles for the stage, and transformed traditional characters and plots into people and things to which the general public could more easily relate. Musical theater got its start in both New York and London, but the former would become the powerhouse most often associated with the genre.

[...] The New American Musical: An Anthology From the End of the Century. Pp Kate Rockland, ?Where the Midtown Direct, Oz and Springsteen Meet.? New York Times 25 December 2005, Arts and Entertainment. Accessed 26 March 2006. Wicked. Synopsis. Accessed 25 March 2006. Michael John LaChiusa, The Great Gray Way: Is it Prognosis Negative for the Broadway Musical? Pp 33. Michael John LaChiusa, The Great Gray Way: Is it Prognosis Negative for the Broadway Musical? Pp33-35. Margo Whitmire, ?'Jersey Boys' Light Up B'way: Musical Bucks Trend; Can Johnny Cash Show Follow?? Billboard 117, no (Nov. [...]

[...] And, for each successful attempt at a new variation there are considerably more failures that attract a large amount of published criticism.[12] Created to appeal to both (pop)rock and theater fans with its combination of singable, memorable tunes and the new-age relatable characters, the rock musical was one of the first subgenres to take to the stage.[13] Though the subgenre of musical has been in recognizable existence for over forty years, Rent was one of the first largely and long-lasting successful rock musicals. [...]

[...] The success of parodies amongst younger crowds begs the question: Does the musical theater industry really want to attract the younger' audiences when they are enthralled with a television show where, according to a New York Times article, ?originality is a losing strategy??[34] Despite the composers, lyricists, and producers best efforts to create new forms of the musical theater to bring in the crowds, musicals seem to find their biggest success amongst younger audiences as a result of other forms of media: film remakes, television, etc. [...]

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