Gypsy is a musical loosely based on the 1957 memoirs of famed striptease artist Gyspy Rose Lee, concentrating on her mother, Rose, widely known as the ultimate stage mother. It chronicles her efforts to make her daughters, June (based on June Havoc) and Louise, (based on Lee) performing stars. Gypsy has music by Jule Styne (Funny Girl, Peter Pan), lyrics by Stephen Sondheim (Company, Into the Woods), and a book by Arthur Laurents (West Side Story, La Cage Aux Folles). It features memorable songs like "Some People," "Everything's Coming Up Roses," and "Rose's Turn."
Gypsy premiered on Broadway on May 21, 1959 at the Broadway Theatre and ran for 702 performances. Its success spawned a London production in 1973 and Broadway revivals in 1974, 1989, 2003, and 2008. Since its debut, Gypsy has been critically acclaimed and regarded by many as the best American musical ever written. Some of the theatre's biggest stars have taken on the now-iconic role of Rose, including Ethel Merman (Anything Goes), Angela Lansbury (Sweeney Todd), Tyne Daly (Master Class), Bernadette Peters (Sunday in the Park with George), and Patti LuPone (Evita). Other notable actors to appear in major productions include Tammy Blanchard (How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying), Laura Benanti (The Sound of Music), John Dossett (Mamma Mia!), and Boyd Gaines (Driving Miss Daisy). Order your own Gypsy tickets today to see this great American musical for yourself.Plot Synopsis:
In the early 1920s, Rose brings her two daughters, June and Louise, around the vaudeville circuit, aggressively pushing them to perform. June is talented and extroverted, but Louise is shy and is often pushed into the background. One day, Rose runs into a former agent, Herbie, who she persuades to manage the act using her feminine charm. Soon, the girls grow up, and June, now called "Dainty June," lands a big audition. While Louise celebrates her birthday alone, June is offered a chance to go to performing arts school, but Rose refuses to break up the act. Both June and Louise think about what it would be like if Rose accepted Herbie's proposal and got married, leaving her show business dreams behind.
A few months later, still on the road, Tulsa, a boy from the act, tells Louise that he has thought up a new act, and that all he needs is a girl to perform with him. Louise fantasizes about being that girl. One day, June goes missing and Louise finds a note from her saying she has run off with another boy from the act because of her mother's overbearing ways. Rose is upset, but quickly vows to make Louise the new star.
Louise grows into a beautiful young woman, and Rose and Herbie have crafted a new act for her. When the gigs dry up, they find themselves accidentally booked to perform at a burlesque house in Kansas. Rose thinks the gig is career suicide, but Louise persuades her to go through with it for the money. Backstage one night, Herbie proposes to Rose and asks her to break up the act for Louise's sake. She reluctantly agrees to marry him the day after closing night. On the last day of the booking, the star stripper is arrested and Rose desperately volunteers Louise to fill in. Disgusted, Herbie walks out on Rose.
Though she is nervous, Louise wants to please her mother, so she goes on, assured by Rose that she needn't actually strip. She sings a seductive song and only removes a glove; her artful teasing becomes her gimmick. Louise becomes bolder and brassier, and she soon outgrows the need for her mother. After a heated argument with Louise (now the famous "Gypsy Rose Lee"), Rose reflects that all of her loved ones have left her. She finally admits that her efforts to make successes out of her daughters actually fed her own unrequited desires for fame and fortune. Order your Gypsy tickets now to see this emotional journey in its entirety.Awards: 1959 Tony Awards: 8 nominations 1975 Tony Awards: 3 nominations, 1 win 1975 Drama Desk Awards: 3 nominations, 3 wins 1990 Tony Awards: 4 nominations, 2 win 1990 Drama Desk Awards: 4 nominations, 2 wins 2003 Tony Awards: 4 nominations 2003 Drama Desk Awards: 3 nominations 2008 Tony Awards: 7 nominations, 3 wins 2008 Drama Desk Awards: 4 nominations, 3 wins and more... Creative Team: Music Jule Styne Lyrics Stephen Sondheim Book Arthur Laurents Based on Gypsy: A Memoir by Gypsy Rose Lee Gypsy News: June 15, 2008 Congratulations to Patti LuPone for winning a Tony for her portrayal of Rose in the Broadway revival of Gypsy!