Goodspeed Musicals

Goodspeed Musicals

name = Goodspeed Opera House

caption = The Goodspeed Opera House from the Connecticut River
location = East Haddam, Connecticut
lat_degrees =
lat_minutes =
lat_seconds =
lat_direction = N
long_degrees =
long_minutes =
long_seconds =
long_direction = W
area =
built = 1876-77
architect = Jabez Comstock
architecture =
added = July 30, 1971
refnum = 71000901cite web|url=|title=National Register of Historical Places - Connecticut (CT), Middlesex County|date=2007-03-01|work=National Register of Historic Places|publisher=National Park Service]
visitation_num =
visitation_year =
governing_body = Private

Goodspeed Musicals, a non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation and advancement of musical theater and the creation of new works, was formed in 1959 to restore the Goodspeed Opera House, located in East Haddam, Connecticut, to its original Victorian appearance. Each year, Goodspeed produces a total of 6 professional musicals. The Goodspeed reopened in 1963 and, under the direction of Michael P. Price since 1968, has sent 16 productions to Broadway. Goodspeed productions have won more than a dozen Tony Awards, while Goodspeed Musicals itself has won two special Tonys.


A distinctive feature of the view from the Connecticut River, the Goodspeed Opera House is the birthplace of some the world's most famous musicals, including "Annie", "Man of La Mancha" and "Shenandoah". The opera house was originally built by a local merchant and banker, William Goodspeed. Construction began in 1876 and finished in 1877. Despite the name, it was not in fact an opera house, but rather a venue for presenting plays. Its first play, "Charles II", opened on October 24, 1877. After William Goodspeed's death, the opera house fell into disrepair, facing a series of less glamourous uses--from a militia base during World War I to a general store and a Department of Transportation storage facility. The state of Connecticut had condemned the building by the time a group of concerned citizens formed Goodspeed Musicals in 1959 to attempt a restoration. The state of Connecticut agreed to sell the group the building for one dollar, provided they acquire enough funding to restore and maintain it. The restoration project took nearly four years and the Goodspeed Opera House was rededicated on June 18, 1963. The first performance in the new opera house was "Oh, Lady! Lady!".

In 1984, Goodspeed Musicals added a second performance venue--the Norma Terris Theatre--in nearby Chester, Connecticut. While the main stage presents a mixture of revivals and new musicals as part of its 3 production season, The Norma Terris presents three new musicals each season. Several original plays debuted here or at the opera house before going on to Broadway and winning Tony Awards.

In addition to the two theaters, Goodspeed Musicals pursues its mission through the Max Showalter Center for Education in Musical Theatre, which offers internships and new writers' residency programs, as well as the Scherer Library of Musical Theatre, which houses the largest musical theatre research facility in the United States. Goodspeed Musicals has also built state-of-the-art production facilities including scenery shops, costume shops and a large costume storage facility.

Tours of many of the Goodspeed facilities can be scheduled in advance for a small fee. Tickets to the opera house or theatre productions should be ordered in advance as most performances in the relatively small theater sell-out quickly.


External links

* [ Goodspeed Musicals official website]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Musicals of Larry Norman — Christian Rock pioneer Larry Norman was involved in the creation and production of several musicals from 1966 to 1973. Contents 1 L Epoque de Dieu (The Epic) (1966) 2 Vox Populi (1966) 3 Alison (1968) …   Wikipedia

  • High Button Shoes — Music Jule Styne Lyrics Sammy Cahn Book Stephen Longstreet George Abbott Basis Novel by Stephen Longstreet …   Wikipedia

  • Abyssinia (musical) — Infobox Musical name= Abyssinia subtitle= The Musical caption= music= Ted Kociolek lyrics= James Racheff book= Ted Kociolek James Racheff basis= Marked By Fire by Joyce Carol Thomas productions= 1987 Musical Theater Works 1987 Goodspeed Musicals… …   Wikipedia

  • Li'l Abner (musical) — Li l Abner Music Gene De Paul Lyrics Johnny Mercer Book Norman Panama Melvin Frank Basis Al Capp s comic strip …   Wikipedia

  • Norma Terris Theatre — At the Norma Terris Theatre in Chester, Connecticut, Goodspeed Musicals develops new musicals and nurtures emerging artists. Dedicated in 1984[1], the theatre is named in honor of the actress Norma Terris, star of Jerome Kern’s Show Boat and a… …   Wikipedia

  • Dear World — Original Cast Recording Music Jerry Herman Lyrics Jerry Herman Book Jerome La …   Wikipedia

  • 13 (musical) — Infobox Musical name= 13 caption= 2008 Original Broadway Cast Recording music=Jason Robert Brown lyrics=Jason Robert Brown book=Dan Elish Robert Horn basis= productions= 2007 Los Angeles 2008 Goodspeed Musicals 2008 Broadway awards= 13 is a… …   Wikipedia

  • M'el Dowd — or Mel Dowd (born February 2, 1938)[1] is an American stage, musical theatre and film actress whose career has spanned over 50 years.[2] Beginning in Shakespeare roles and films in the 1950s, Dowd continued to perform on stage, film and… …   Wikipedia

  • Camille Claudel (musical) — Infobox Musical name =Camille Claudel subtitle = image size =125px caption =Production poster music =Frank Wildhorn lyrics =Nan Knighton book =Nan Knighton basis = productions =2003 Goodspeed Musicals awards = Camille Claudel is a musical with a… …   Wikipedia

  • Sunset Boulevard (musical) — Sunset Boulevard Original West End Logo Music Andrew Lloyd Webber Lyrics Don Black Christopher Hampton …   Wikipedia