The Brandywiners’ presentation of “Guys and Dolls” hits Longwood Gardens’ Open Air Theatre August 5-7.
A quick premise: Nathan Detroit, the organizer of the oldest permanent floating crap game in New York, bets gambler Sky Masterson that he can’t make a successful play for Sarah Brown, a devout Salvation Army reformer. Meanwhile, Adelaide, a chorus girl, has been dating Nathan Detroit for 14 years. Nathan is nowhere close to putting a ring on it. He has other things on his mind, primarily finding a new place for his next crap game. The book of the musical is based on Damon Runyon’s short story, “The Idyll of Miss Sarah Brown.”
The score—music and lyrics by Frank Loesser—offers some of the most memorable tunes in music theater history, including “I’ll Know,” “A Bushel and a Peck,” and “I’ve Never Been in Love Before.” And in the title song, you learn why guys are generally confused. To quote Mr. Loesser:
“When a lazy slob takes a good steady job,
And he smells from Vitalis and Barbasol.
Call it dumb, call it clever,
Ah, but you can get odds forever,
That the guy’s only doing it for some doll.”
Seeing the classic musical at Longwood’s outdoor theater is a treat, but more noteworthy is the fact that much of its proceeds will benefit educational and cultural institutions in the tri-state region. The Brandywiners have raised more than $600,000 in its 75-year history.
Contact info: brandywiners.org, or (610) 388-1000.
Cool Fact (Source: http://www.brandywiners.org/currentshow.shtml)
“Guys and Dolls” opened at the 46th Street Theatre on November 24, 1950, and enjoyed a run of 1,200 performances—the fifth longest-running Broadway musical of the 1950s. The original cast included Robert Alda, Vivian Blaine, Sam Levene and Isabel Bigley. The 1955 film version featured Marlon Brando, Vivian Blaine, Frank Sinatra and Jean Simmons. A Broadway revival was staged with an all-black cast in 1976.