Jaz Dorsey: Nashville Goes NUTTY for Theatre! — Jaz Dorsey — AAPEX

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Jaz Dorsey: Nashville Goes NUTTY for Theatre!

Nashville Goes Nutty
Whatever Happened to New Haven?

Observation on The Acting Industries in Nashville, Tennessee
by Jaz Dorsey, The Nashville Dramaturgy Project

It came as no surprise to me - and yet as a great surprise - when I learned that Jerry Lewis had chosen Music City USA to launch his Broadway bound stage version of THE NUTTY PROFESSOR with out of town tryouts like the ones they used to have in New Haven, at least as I remember it from all those Hollywood movies about the Broadway stage.

No surprise because I know as well as anyone the tremendous talent resources and fantastic audience base that Nashville has to offer the theatrical producer.

A surprise because, in choosing Nashville, Lewis and his collaborators bypassed such dynamic theatre cities as Chicago, Atlanta, Washington DC and, of course, LA.

It seems that a fellow named Mac Pirkle may have something to do with this. I don't know Mac but I know his legend and his long battle to establish Nashville as a birthing place for new American Musicals.

And, even if indirectly, it may reflect on Marjorie Halbert and the musical theatre training program at Belmont, because as Marjoire's young protegees graduate and move out into the workplace, I feel certain that when our colleagues across the US see Belmont University on the resumes of these brilliantly trained triple threats, an awareness that Nashville is becoming a front line training ground for the next generation of musical theatre artists is permeating this industry.

And it no doubt has a lot to do with TPAC - The Tennessee Performing Arts Center, located on Deaderick Street in downtown Nashville.

When I'm singing in the Shubert Theatre,
I'm singing on Broadway
And when I'm dancing in the Shubert Theatre,
I'm dancing on Broadway
But when I'm dancing on Deaderick Street,
I'm still dancing on my Broadway feet.
I can do Broadway where ever I go.

That's how I feel about it.

Come to Nashville and Go to the Theatre.

Jaz Dorsey
The Nashville Dramaturgy Project

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