REVIEW: FOREVER PLAID THE MOVIE
OVERVIEW: FOREVER PLAID is one of the most popular and successful Off-Broadway musicals in history, generating multi-millions of dollars in ticket sales since its premiere in 1990. On September 20, the 20th Anniversary Presentation of this affectionate revue of the close-harmony guy groups of the 1950s will be available from New Video’s Flatiron Film Company on DVD and digital platforms.
The premise: Broadsided by a bus full of Catholic school girls in 1964 on their way to the Ed Sullivan Show, The Plaids are wiped out while driving their red ’54 Mercury convertible to their first real singing gig. FOREVER PLAID begins with the quartet – Jinx, Smudge, Sparky and Francis – returning from the afterlife nearly 50 years later for one final chance at musical glory.
Interspersed with witty and insightful dialogue about the love of music, finding success, and the courage we need to face life every day, FOREVER PLAID is Happy Days meets Jersey Boys meets Tony Bennett. The crowd-pleasing score consists of unforgettable classics including “Three Coins in the Fountain,” “Chain Gang,” “Cry,” “Heart and Soul,” “Rags to Riches,” and many more.
SYNOPSIS: As The Plaids begin their earthly journey and appear on stage, a voice from heaven (David Hyde Pierce) explains their inter-terrestrial trek from the astral plane to where they are standing and then lays down the stakes: there is a perfect harmonic chord buried in the song “Love is a Many Splendored Thing,” a chord The Plaids never fully hit in life but now they must for their spectral visit to earth. They attack the opportunity with wild, comedic abandon, never letting their fears or nerves prevent them from giving their all. The result is the happy resolution of their redemptive arc. The harmonic chord is finally found and sung. It resonates with the harmony we all want in our lives and in our worldview, all across America and around the world.
FOREVER PLAID ran for 5 years in New York and 8 years in Las Vegas, and has played in nearly every major metropolitan market in the United States. George Bush, Bill Clinton and the Queen of England have enjoyed performances of FOREVER PLAID; the album is one of the most successful off-Broadway soundtracks ever.
In addition to writing and directing the original New York production, Stuart Ross has directed stage productions of PLAID in major cities in the U.S. and around the world, including Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, London-West End, Washington D.C, Minneapolis, Cleveland, Detroit, Tokyo, and Las Vegas, among many others.
FOREVER PLAID: THE MOVIE reunites 3 of the 4 original cast members – Stan Chandler, David Engel and Larry Raben – with original Jersey Boy, Daniel Reichard, and was taped from a live performance in 2009. The presentation then aired in 2010 in more than 500 select movie theaters in the U.S. as a National CineMedia Fathom Event. FOREVER PLAID: THE MOVIE began airing on PBS television stations in July 2011.
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