The timing with the Tonys couldn't be much better. It's a day o' theater. I'm heading off very shortly to see a matinee of the Kander-Ebb musical, The Scottsboro Boys. (It got 12 Tony nominations last year, though didn't win any.) I've been looking forward to seeing this since its workshop days, since I've been getting emails about it from my friend John Kander. (Not that John Kander, but his nephew. We've been friends since summer camp at Camp Nebagamon -- the same camp that that John Kander also went to.) John II has been writing me for a couple years about how wonderful the show is, and sending me videos, so I'm quite primed.
This video is the one that most got me intrigued. It's called "Go Back Home" and sounds nothing like a Kander-Ebb song, who the among many musicals they wrote include, of course, Cabaret and Chicago, not to mention the song "New York, New York." (Fred Ebb passed away long before The Scottsboro Boys went to a workshop production. In fact, the previous Kander-Ebb musical, Curtains, was also produced after Fred Ebb died. As far as I'm aware, they even have two more musicals in advanced state of development: one based on Thornton Wilder's The Skin of Their Teeth, and another based on the play The Visit, which has developed enough that the musical actually played at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago a couple years ago. Whether either of these will progress, though, remains to be seen.)
Anyway, I find it impressive that after having such an iconic career and sound, often brassy, that Kander and Ebb were able to still grow and come up with a song that you wouldn't have any idea that it was by them. The song here is performed by Brandon Victor Dixon, and introduced by John Kander when several of the show's creators were appearing on a local New York TV show, Theater Talk.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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