Is Broadway Irrelevant to Mormons?

Friday night, 17 Aug 2012, there was a birthday party for President Thomas S. Monson in the LDS Conference Center in SLC.  According to the SLTrib, “One might have mistaken it for a Broadway show.”

Soaring voices belted musical theater hits from Annie, Brigadoon, The Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables and Cats to a live audience of tens of thousands.

Songs important and inspirational to President Monson were performed.

Ironically, just last year (April 2011) Richard Otterson, Head of Public Relations for the LDS Church, made a somewhat bizarre statement in a blog post for the Washington Post.  In commenting on The Book of Mormon musical, he asserted that:  What Broadway does is irrelevant to most of us Mormons.  Well it appears that Broadway is relevant for President Monson, and I suspect for many other LDS Church members including my Mother.

And here in lies one of the problems with apologetics.  You just dig yourself a deeper hole.

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3 Responses to Is Broadway Irrelevant to Mormons?

  1. shematwater says:

    I think that Brother Otterson was refering to the business side of Broadway, or what the owners and producer decide to show in their theaters. These discissions are irrelevant. We will seek out good entertainment where ever it is found, and avoid bad entertainment. Thus, wheather Broadway shows a good play or a bad play is irrelevant, as we will find the good and avoid the bad.
    He was basically denying Broadway its power of reputation among the LDS, and that is how it should be.

  2. Susan says:

    Shematwater, you need to read yesterday’s Salt Lake Tribune cover article about Lez Miz and how the LDS culture has supported its sold-out performances in this area. If Otterson was “denying Broadway its power of reputation among the LDS” than how do you explain the Lez Miz phenomena, among others? The church cannot speak with forked tongue and Tired Road Warrior has shown an excellent example. For Otterson to comment that “What Broadway does is irrelevant to most of us Mormons” is ironic when musical theater hits from Annie, Brigadoon, The Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables and Cats were performed to a live audience of tens of thousands in honor of President Monson’s birthday.

    • shematwater says:

      Susan
      I am not denying the impact of these plays, all of which I enjoy very much. I love musical theater, and have always saught out truly good and inspiring musicals. However, the fact that a play was shown on broadway means very little in itself. I would love Lez Miz just as much if it had never been on broadway, as I would all the other great plays that I have seen.
      The only benefit that broadway provides is that it is a medium through which these plays become known to us. As anything other than a medium it is irrelevant. We, as members, should not think a play better than it is because it was on broadway, nor should we think it less because it wasn’t.

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