Camelot Tickets

Alan Jay Lerner and Frederic Loewe wrote the 1960 musical play, Camelot, based on the King Arthur legend as adapted from the T. H. White novel, ?The Once and Future King?. The affair between Arthur's wife, Guinevere, and his friend, Sir Lancelot is the main conflict of the story. About 873 performances have been done on Broadway. When Alan Lerner and Moss Hart decided to adapt the novel in 1959, Loewe was reluctant to do it. My Fair Lady had been a tremendous success and expectations were running high for a new Lerner and Loewe musical. Loewe agreed to do the music but there were a couple of set backs as his wife left him and the final product sill needed a bit of work as rehearsals started. A strong cast pf camelot play was roped in by the producers cast including Andrews, Burton and McDowall (later replaced by debutant, John Cullum). Robert Goulet did his first Broadway role in the production.


The length of the show was a major issue when Camelot broadway opened in Toronto, at the O'Keefe Theater. It was five minutes to one in the morning when the curtain came down. Along with this, there was another round of set-backs. A bleeding ulcer caused Lerner to stay away at the hospital but he had to step in as a temporary director when Hart had a heart attack. The show moved to Boston, a bit shorter but without any major changes. After two previews, the show opened on Broadway at the Majestic Theater on December 3, 1960. Andrews got the Guinevere's song ?The Lusty Month of May? at the last minute before the first New York preview and provoked her famous quote, "Of course darling, but do try to get it to me the night before." The New York show got mixed reactions from the critics. By now, Hart was on the mend and helped in cutting the play shorter. The songs ?Take me to the Fair? and ?Fie on Goodness? were cut.

Ed Sullivan wanted to create a segment for his TV show "Toast of the Town," celebrating the fifth anniversary of My Fair Lady but when he approached Lerner and Loewe, they decided to perform four highlights from Camelot. This along with the publicity that the show's original cast recording had been a favorite of the assassinated President John F. Kennedy stimulated ticket sales. It was said that Kennedy's favorite lines were in the final number (in which Arthur knights a young boy and tells him to pass on the story of Camelot to future generations). Overall, this is the tale of King Arthur, Guenevere, Lancelot, and others in Camelot and how Arthur struggles to make Camelot a peaceful and happy place.

The spirit of Nimue, lures away Arthur's tutor, the magician Merlin by singing Follow Me. Arthur establishes the Round Table to bring tranquility and justice to his domain. Young Lancelot arrives at Camelot the muscial after hearing the news in France. He proclaims his intentions in C'est Moi. He is introduced to Guenevere at a castle outing held during ?The Lusty Month of May?. Lancelot irritates the Queen immensely and she makes fun of him through her invitations to three Round Table knights in ?Then You May Take Me to the Fair?. When they get ready to joust with Lancelot, Guenevere also gives her kerchief to the other knights to wear as a token of favor. No matter, how hard the King tries to dissuade his Queen from siding with the court against Lancelot, she refuses.

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