The Original Entr'acte
Posted by: reed23 06:52 pm EST 02/19/24
In reply to: re: MACK AND MABEL Full Production in Los Angeles - PlayWiz 05:18 pm EST 02/19/24

What we now know as the terrific Overture to MACK & MABEL was indeed the original Broadway production's Entr'acte. The original production began with some elegaic brass chords introducing "I Won't Send Roses," and settling into the darkness for Preston's entrance.

Gower Champion was well-known for his avoidance of traditional overtures, from BYE, BYE, BIRDIE (which was a "working overture" with film about Birdie's being drafted) to CARNIVAL (none) to HELLO, DOLLY! (none - one was added years later)... to MACK & MABEL (none). The 42ND STREET Overture was an exception (and was interrupted by dialogue and segued into the opening number.)

Jerry Herman moved the original Entr'acte to the Overture position in the 2nd major production of MACK & MABEL, which happened in Florida in roughly 1976, starring Lucie Arnaz and David Cryer, directed & choreographed by Ron Field. It has appeared as the Overture in every production since, except, I believe, the Encores rendition. (Encores also moved CHICAGO's original Exit Music to be the Entr'acte of that revival.)
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