Wednesday afternoon The AIR brings you a new episode of Curtain Call that celebrates the 60th anniversary of the longest-running musical in history, The Fantasticks. You can tune in at the website, or on this embedded radio player…

May 3rd marks sixty years since The Fantasticks opened at The Sullivan Street Playhouse in Greenwich Village. Nobody realized at the time that this charming musical adventure farce would remain there for forty-two years. To commemorate the anniversary of The Fantasticks’ off-Broadway debut, today at 3 PM Mel Larch devotes the entire hour of Curtain Call to music from the 2006 off-Broadway revival of the show, which ran an additional eleven years.

Based on a French play called The Romancers, The Fantasticks is the story of two neighboring fathers who pretend to feud in order to trick their children, Luisa and Matt, into falling in love.
Since its original run began sixty years ago, the show has played throughout the US and at least 67 foreign countries. An abbreviated version of the show aired on TV in 1964 as part of The Hallmark Hall of Fame and a feature film version was released in 2000. And during that time, the show’s songs by Harvey Schmidt and Tom Jones have become familiar standards, most notably the nostalgic and wistful Try To Remember.

In her introduction, Mel talks about her own experience performing in a local production of The Fantasticks, which involved an unauthorized gender-flip of one of the characters.

Curtain Call can be heard on The AIR Wednesday at 3 PM, with replays Thursday at 8 AM and 9 PM, Friday at 10 AM and Saturday at 6 PM. An all-night marathon of Curtain Call episodes can be heard Wednesday nights, beginning at Midnight, and an additional marathon can be heard Sunday evenings from 6 PM to midnight..