The $100-million Tom Lehrer Tribute?
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The $100-million Tom Lehrer Tribute?

2004_11_14theatre.gifToronto’s theatre community is all abuzz and aflutter about this item that appeared The Globe and Mail’s “Feed the Goat” gossip column today:

Don’t hold your breath, but we should know within the next fortnight whether Toronto will be chosen as the launch site for the largest theatrical project ever conceived. My sources in London tell me the show’s producers are seriously considering Toronto for the world premiere, either in late 2005 or early 2006. Details of the show itself are under very tight wraps, but I’m reliably informed that it’s based on a very hot creative literary property (which is not Harry Potter); that it’s not a stage musical in the traditional sense, although music is a big part of it; and that the set uses three interlocking revolving stages and 18 elevators. Needless to say, the estimated $100-million (U.S.) investment would be an enormous boost to Toronto’s sluggish economy and its reputation. As of now, it’s a 50-50 proposition.

Given Toronto’s recent big-time theatre woes — early farewells to fare like The Producers, Hairspray and Urinetown — this rumour seems a little spurious…. which is just the way Torontoist likes ’em.Our first guess was The Lord of the Rings: The Musical, but that show — no joke! — is already slated to open on London’s West End in the fall of 2005. Our next was that it was Garth Drabinsky’s big Toronto comeback with a musical stage production of his film The Gospel of John, a hot literary property if there was ever one; alas, we think this washed-up impressario is not up to such impressive impressario-ing at the moment.Our biggest hope is that the project is a megamusical production of Richard Greenblatt‘s musical-in-development about satirical pianist-in-a-bowtie Tom Lehrer, which he previewed to great hooting and hollering at last night’s Cold Reading Series Christmas Cabaret. A blog can dream, can’t he or she?If you Torontoist readers hear anything, be sure to let your favourite Toronto blog know now. (Only if your favourite Toronto blog is Torontoist, of course.)