It was only a matter of time between the massive success of Hamilton and someone realizing there’s another musical about the making of America ready to be restaged (the fact that Encores! did it in 2016 probably helps). Today, the Roundabout Theatre has announced plans to revive the Peter Stone and Sherman Edwards musical 1776 on Broadway in spring 2021, directed by Waitress, Pippin, and Jagged Little Pill director Diane Paulus. This 1776 revival is a co-production between the Roundabout and Harvard’s American Repertory Theater, where Paulus is the artistic director, and which will stage the musical next May. According to a Roundabout release, 1776 will also pop up in a “handful of cities” between its A.R.T. and Broadway engagements, including Center Theatre Group’s Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles in July of 2020. In an interview with the Boston Globe, Paulus previously said she was interested in 1776 because the musical puts attention on the fact that the Declaration of Independence did not address slavery. “The Declaration was the moment for the country to make a founding statement; that’s what John Adams said,’’ said Paulus. But, she added, “We made a major compromise in the founding of the country.’’ That is, expect a different approach to this material than it got it is first run on Broadway in 1969 or the 1997 revival.
So many wigs. Photo: Kevin Berne