Xanadu on sale at the Paramount

Xanadu084
image courtesy STG Presents

Despite the fact that Xanadu, the 1980 movie musical starring Olivia Newton-John as a roller-skating muse to struggling artist Michael Beck and the legendary Gene Kelly in a reprisal of sorts of his role in 1944’s Cover Girl. is a seriously bad movie, I’ve always liked it. Not because of its badness, but in spite of it. Most people who like it–and there are quite a few, despite barely breaking even at the box office and being soundly panned by critics, Xanadu later went on to cult film popularity–see it the other way around, which is totally understandable to anyone who has ever seen it. Still, I wasn’t the only one to see some potential in it; Douglas Carter Beane (whose playwriting credits include The Country Club, 2007 Tony Award for Best Play nominee The Little Dog Laughed and As Bees in Honey Drown) wrote Xanadu into a stage musical which went on to be a big hit on Broadway, earning Tony nominations and winning Outer Circle Critics and Drama Desk awards as well as selling out show after show after show.

The show plays up the campy and ridiculous aspects of the movie, but it’s not all snark–it’s a colorful spectacle of story, song and skating. The play includes the ELO and Olivia Newton John songs that made the original film soundtrack a smash hit and throws in a couple extra by Jeff Lynne and John Farrar.

Xanadu hits the stage at Seattle’s Paramount Theater for a week in January, opening January 19 and closing January 24 as part of the ongoing Broadway Across America series. Tickets are going to be a hot commodity, so you’ll want to get yours as early as you can.

Tickets go on sale Friday, December 4, and are available at the Paramount box office, by phone at 877.STG.4TIX (4849) or online at Tickets.com, STG Presents or Broadway Across America. Ticket prices range from $20 to $60.

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