Is Almost Famous The Musical a flop?

By: Brianna Hollie

Last Thursday, November 3rd, Almost Famous: The Musical made its highly anticipated Broadway debut at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre.

Almost famous: The Musical is adapted from the original film Almost Famous, which was released in the year 2000. The film stars Kate Hudson, Billy Crudup, and Patrick Fugit as it takes the audience through the adventures of a young cub reporter as he gets to write an article for rolling stone on an unhinged rock band called Stillwater in the 70s. The movie was incredibly successful at the time of its release, making 47 million dollars at the box office and winning many highly respected awards. Today, the film is one of many pop cultural classics.

It would seem like a perfect idea to make this film into a musical because one of the main themes of the film is music and has what is considered to have one of the best movie soundtracks in history with songs such as ‘’Tiny Dancer’’ by Elton John, ‘’Tangerine’’ by Led Zeppelin, and ‘’Waiting for a Man’’ by Daviid Bowie. The film itself is a love letter to music.

However, shockingly, the musical was not met with the same level of success. The musical, (starring Chris Wood, Solea Pfeiffer, and Casey Likes) though having the same director (Cameron Crowe), did not seem to make as big of waves as the original film did. Many critics did not have many kind words when it came to the musical.

The cast of Almost Famous. Photo by Neal Preston.

Here is what some critics had to say:

“The Correctly” says Almost Famous: The musical “doesn’t rock.”

“Fortunate Fall” says Almost Famous “may be a new rock musical, but it strikes tired notes – Broadway News.”

“The Daily Beast” says Almost Famous on Broadway is a rock and roll nightmare.”

Finally, “The New York Times Theater” says that “despite the intelligence of the 2000 movie on which it’s based, and the track record of its creators, the Broadway adaption of “Almost Famous” misses every opportunity to be the sharp, smart, entertainment it might have been.”

On the contrary, audiences would beg to differ. The musical has a 4.7/5 star audience rating which indicates that the audiences have been very happy with their time spent watching the musical. For instance, one YouTube commenter says ”Solea captures the magic of penny Lane so well…’’ and another says ’’[the] show was amazing.’’

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