Contest Will Provide Free A Chorus Line Licensing to Under-Resourced Schools | Playbill

Education News Contest Will Provide Free A Chorus Line Licensing to Under-Resourced Schools

Concord Theatricals is celebrating the Best Musical Tony winner's 50th anniversary with a special competition.

A scene from the original Broadway production of A Chorus Line. Martha Swope / The New York Public Library

Concord Theatricals is celebrating the 50th anniversary of A Chorus Line and the 80th anniversary of its late composer Marvin Hamlisch's birth with a special competition that will award free licenses of the musical's Teen Edition to 10 schools in low-income communities. One Singular Sensation: A Chorus Line Licensing Competition is open to all U.S. high schools, with Title 1 and other under-resourced schools especially encouraged to enter.

Schools entering are asked to complete a written application that includes an essay on the prompt: "What makes your students singular sensations?" Video entries can optionally be included as well. Winners will be chosen based on a variety of factors, including financial need and answer creativity, with selected schools receiving a three-performance licensing package and all rental materials free of charge. Applications are being accepted through February 12, with winning performances required to be scheduled between June 2024 and December 2025.

A Chorus Line is one of the most iconic and innovative musicals in the history of Broadway,” says Concord Theatricals President Bill Gaden in a statement. “We are so happy to give students from under-resourced schools the opportunity to explore the show’s characters and experiences. The story of A Chorus Line provides a unique peek into the backstage drama of putting on a Broadway show—a story every theatre student will enjoy.”

A Chorus Line transports audiences to a high-stakes audition for a Broadway ensemble, with dancers on the line and asked to bare all explaining who they are to the show's director. The show was originally conceived, directed, and choreographed by Michael Bennett, who developed the idea via a series of discussion groups with real dancers, many of whom went on to appear in the musical's original production. The work features a book by James Kirkwood and Nicholas Dante, music by Hamlisch, and lyrics by Edward Kleban. The song list includes such favorites as "At the Ballet," "Nothing," "What I Did for Love," and "One."

Bob Avian co-choreographed the original production, which premiered at The Public Theater in 1975 before transferring to Broadway the same year and becoming one of the Main Stem's long runners. Along with winning Best Musical at the 1976 Tony Awards, the musical won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama.

Concord's Teen Edition of the musical adapts the full-length musical for teenage performers, removing references to smoking and suicide, explicit sexual content, and profanity, and includes character changes to allow for casting flexibility. Concord is also the licensing home for the Broadway version of A Chorus Line.

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Rare Photos From the Original Broadway Cast of A Chorus Line

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