And so it goes -- another production of Side Show leaves us. Its cult status will remain, untouched by mainstream attention. This is no surprise to those of us who follow such things. In fact, the surprise was that it came at all.
In 1997, a hauntingly beautiful and richly uncommon musical called Side Show opened on Broadway to critical acclaim. The show was based on the lives of the famous conjoined real-life twins who were headliners in the 1930s vaudeville circuit.
Bill Condon, aware of the controversy surrounding Side Show in its original production -- is it P.C. to focus on "freaks"-- said he is hoping for the day when reviews won't open with a comparison to its ill-fated first production. And now this production is meeting an ill fate all its own.
I saw it first. Well, not quite. The rapturous critical reception that has greeted the revival of Side Show on Broadway takes me back, way back, to a demonstration of Side Show's unique power that I witnessed firsthand quite some time ago.