• Broadway Beat

We Asked Everyone Leaving "Pass Over" If Broadway Was "Back" and Their Answers May Surprise You

by Edward Precht. @PertoltPrecht.

NEW YORK, NY – After 18 months of darkened marquees and silent streets, a single curtain has risen on the Great White Way, offering a glimmer of hope that normalcy may not be too far off. The show? Pass Over – Antoinette Chinonye Nwandu’s poignant play about searching for hope in a hopeless world – which opened this past Sunday to near-universal acclaim. Its opening sparked a question many of us have been waiting to have answered for a long time: is Broadway finally back?


We managed to grab a few theater-goers after the premiere to get their thoughts.


“Broadway’s returned and it is here to stay,” said 65-year-old Elaine Katz. “Finally, I can let my phone ring through most of Act One in peace.”


“You can’t believe how happy I am,” said 89-year-old Arnold Rosenwasser. “I haven’t had a chance to shift slightly in my seat and go ‘Hmmm’ in the longest time. How are people supposed to know that I understood a part of the play if I don’t shift slightly in my seat and go ‘Hmmm’?”


“It’s so good to be back in a theater,” said Miriam Strauss, the oldest woman you ever did see. “I’ve been waiting to sit in a crowded room and open just the, the biggest fucking bag of mints I could find. And slowly, too. And if you don’t think I’ll pop four or five of those crunchy boys into my mouth at once, well, you’d be as wrong as the alarm on my watch that’ll go off three minutes before the end of the show.”


“I can’t sleep unless I’m sitting in a cramped chair in a cold room, surrounded by 500 people who are all doing their best to ignore my snoring,” said 71-year-old Mike Sack. “So it’s good to be back. Thanks, Broadway!” He then smiled and gave us a thumbs-up, as if he thought we were, like, filming a commercial?


Not all feedback, however, was bathed in positivity.


“Weird concert,” said a guy who clearly thought he was seeing Springsteen On Broadway. “Not as much music as I thought. I don’t even think he was in it? But it was still good, I guess.”


“Oh yeah, totally loved Pass Over,” said white critic Jesse Green. “Loved how it was about a creek or something. Laughed at all the Gabriel Ebert parts. Man, I am pumped for Music Man.”


“Is it ‘back?’ Maybe. But is it ‘here to stay?’ Maybe,” said a girl obviously killing time until her Uber arrived. “But is it ‘back for good?’ Could be. ‘Theatre,’ though? Yeah, that’s this. And what about – oh, he’s here, bye.”


“Um, I think we can all agree Broadway’s return was marked by the piragua guy from In the Heights,” said Lin-Manuel Miranda.


“You bet it’s back,” said the miasmic representation of Theatre Stan Twitter, saliva dripping from its hazy maw, phantom tendrils tugging at its ‘AMERICAN PSYCHO DESERVED BETTER’ t-shirt. "I cannot wait to spend the better part of my day remorselessly eviscerating the very thing I claim to love.”


“Yeah, I agree with that hot guy!” said Lin-Manuel Miranda, but this time using a higher-pitched voice and pretending his hand is a mouth.


“Meow,” said a cat we followed for a few blocks, mistakenly thinking she was Beth Leavel in a fur coat.


“Nah, theatre ain’t back,” said a strangely-familiar Australian voice. “Least, it won’t be ‘til The Music Man opens in December! Now, crikey, that’ll be a real bloomin’ onion of an event, or my name isn’t Hu… uh, Jack. Jack Hughman. Yep, that’s me. Just a normal guy who loves The Music Man and played Wolverine on the big screen for 20 years.”


“Was that Hugh Jackman?” asked Lin-Manuel Miranda’s hand-mouth.


So there you have it: Broadway’s back, and it – and its weird, aging, gate-keeping clientele – is here to stay! We’ll see you at The Music Man!