On June 22nd, 1976: The first Broadway production of Godspell opened at the Broadhurst Theatre. The musical closed a few months later in September of 1977 after 527 performances. Although it has never won any major awards, Godspell has since been revived several times both on and off Broadway. The most recent production starred former Disney kid Corbin Bleu as Jesus.
…AND I HATE HAMLET CLOSED
On June 22nd, 1991: I Hate Hamlet closed at the Walter Kerr Theatre after 88 performances. The comedy, which was set in author John Barrymore’s old apartment, proved to be more dramatic than the audience anticipated when its notoriously mercurial lead, Nicol Williamson, injured co-star Evan Handler during an onstage sword fight.
BORN ON THIS DAY: FREDDIE PRINZE
One June 22nd, 1954: Actor and standup comedian Freddie Prinze was born. Born Frederick Karl Pruetzel, Freddie changed his surname for the sake of his budding comedic career; while he originally wanted to be named the King of comedy, Alan King already had that last name, so he opted to be its Prince, instead. The first young comedian to be asked to sit down with Johnny Carson, Prinze’s big break came his appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson in 1973. Always focusing on his Hungarian and Puerto Rican—or as he called it, “Hungarican”—decent, Prinze dealt predominately with the subjects of race relations and racism. Actor and comedian George Lopez, star of ABC’s hit series, George Lopez, has cited Prinze as being one of his major comedic influences.
Featured Image Courtesy of Raised By TV