History of Broadway Essay

Words: 2229
Pages: 9

There have been many debates on whether or not Broadway musicals are considered “serious” art forms. People feel that a musical can never be taken seriously if the character is always singing sporadically, which is very unusual in real life. However, musicals have been around for quite some time now, many musicals are being adapted into major motion pictures, many children are raised on the famous Disney musical cartoons and everybody( whether they’ll admit it or not) has seen at least one musical in their lifetime and are able to sing some of the songs from it. It seems that musicals have made an impact on society but yet are still not taken seriously. The history of musicals dates back to the Greeks. It is a common known fact that …show more content…
People quickly saw the success and began to try to create their own versions of this new style known as musical comedies. Some had success but were quickly forgotten or overlooked with Harrigan and Hart’s success. The more light-hearted and “cheesy” musicals began to pop up all over the Broadway scene in 1940. The Broadway producers felt that with America at war and people still suffering from the Depression audiences just wanted to be entertained and no longer wanted to see their troubles and everyday situations acted out on stage because they were no longer comical. There were still a few comedies left however, one of the most popular being This is the Army a comedy which spoofed the army life. This particular play had a huge success in America and also had successful run in London. This is the Army became so popular that they even made a motion picture out of the play which earned over $9 million and donated to the Army’s Emergency Relief fund. The 1940’s were filled with famous musicals all with the hopes of just being pure entertainment and losing the idea that only the most artistic performances would be well received. Two of the most famous musical writers in the history of the business made their debut during this time, Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II. Rodgers and Hammerstein were friends in college and both agreed that the best way to approach a musical was with the lyrics first, which was rare for the