A Playbill in the Attic

While cleaning out the attic at the family home in Albany, New York, I found this copy of Playbill.

1776 - March 1971 Issue of Playbill

The Playbill is dated March 1971 (Volume 8, Issue 3) and includes the program for the musical 1776 which played at the St. James Theater at 246 West 44th Street (between 7th & 8th Avenue) in New York City.

1776 opened at the St. James Theater on 28 Dec 1970. It’s interesting to note that the musical to appear at the St. James just prior to 1776 was Hello Dolly! which played at the St. James from 16 Jan 1964 – 27 Dec 1970, a total of 2844 performances.

1776 originally opened at the 42nd Street Theater from 16 Mar 1969 – 27 Dec 1970, played at the St. James from 28 Dec 1970 – 24 Apr 1971, and then moved to the Majestic Theater from 27 Apr 1971 – 13 Feb 1972, a total of 1217 performances. It won three Tony Awards in 1969 for Best Musical, Best Featured Actor (Ronald Holgate for his portrayal of Richard Henry Lee), and Best Direction of a Musical (Peter Hunt).

I obtained this copy of Playbill when I attended a performance of 1776 with the English Club at Vincentian Institute High School during my Sophomore year. Though I don’t know the exact date I attended the performance, this issue of Playbill proves that I saw this performance in March 1971. Notable actors in the performance I saw were William Daniels as John Adams and Howard Da Silva as Benjamin Franklin.

The previous year, I attended a revival performance of The Front Page with the Vincentian English Club at the Ethyl Barrymore Theater in New York City. During that revival, the play ran from 18 Oct 18 1969 – 28 Feb 1970. I don’t know the date I attended the performance and I don’t have a copy of the Playbill, but I probably saw The Front Page at the end of the run in February 1970. I do remember that the role of Hildy Johnson was played by Bert Convy.

For other posts on the Vincentian Institute, see:

For posts on the Church of St. Vincent de Paul, see:

For posts on the Pine Hills Branch of the Albany Public Library, see:

Copyright © 2007 by Stephen J. Danko

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One Response to A Playbill in the Attic

  1. kathy owens mccabe says:

    I just saw this part of your blog and can’t believe you have that Playbill.
    I was on that trip too and it was great fun.
    I dont live in Albany anymore but love readingthis and I hope our other classmates will too.
    Kathy Owens McCabe
    VI 1973

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