Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Semper Fi


I began my tenure at the Music Box Theater just after the opening of A Few Good Men. It was written by Aaron Sorkin before anyone knew who Aaron Sorkin was. The show was riveting, rollicking and electric. As good as the movie was years later, the play was even better.

The Music Box was helmed by Herman "Hy" Pearl, a real old timer in the industry. It was a terrific experience working for Hy, his stories of the old days were always quite entertaining. I got a chance to learn a lot about a Broadway box office, not just simply selling tickets at the window. I got the opportunity to really learn the ins and outs of all facets of a working box office. Bob Kelly, Hy's first assistant, would become the head treasurer at the Music Box years later, when Hy passed away.

At that time, the Music Box was still majority owned by the Estate of Irving Berlin. Berlin died the year before I arrived, so I never got a chance to meet him. His family still had a great interest in the theater, and his daughters would frequently stop by the theater to show it to friends, and they'd be there for every opening night.

The teeny tiny box office at the Music Box, which at first seemed to me to be much like a submarine, would become my home on Broadway for the next twenty years.

A Few Good Men had a very nice run for us, but it all ended quite abruptly when the first Gulf War began. As you might imagine, a play that questioned the integrity of American military officers would not survive during a war of choice by this country. The armed forces were back to being unquestioned heroes, with no room for nuance or charges of immorality. So our first Oil War had begun, and I'd be out of a job for a while.


This program gives a very interesting backround to the show "A Few Good Men." Some participants are gone now, and everyone is so very young. I recommend this show for it's historical value and it's very interesting information. 

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