Yes, the Whingers are on Broadway.
Or rather “The Broadway” as we now refer to it (a gag that makes us chuckle every time we use it and – interestingly – is the only “gag” to bring a faint smile to the Whingers’ lips in the otherwise tedious The Big Gay Musical).
And you know what? The Broadway isn’t on strike. Yet.
Lets look at the likelihood shall we?
Those with memories longer than us will recall that the last time the Whingers ventured onto the Great White Way, it shut down, or most of it did. We arrived the day the Broadway closed due to a stage-hand strike, forcing us to scratch around amongst the Slim Pickens left and even forcing us to resort to Altar Boyz.
The time before that, before we had even started whingeing (well, we were always whingeing it’s just we hadn’t decided to inflict it on the world at that juncture), we missed Nine with Antonio Banderas as a four-day musicians’ walkout delayed previews which then started the day the Whingers flew out. On that trip Harriet Sansom Harris (our raison d’être for seeing the thoroughly underwhelming Thoroughly Modern Millie) had reason to not appear and later that day we sat in Sardi’s sipping drinks watching President Bush declare war on Iraq minutes before scooting down the street to see The Producers.
Is anyone seeing a pattern?
Megan Mullally pulled out of another on our list: Lips Together, Teeth Apart during rehearsal, forcing the show’s cancellation. Perhaps we should have kept our own lips together and never have told her we intended to catch her show when we cornered her earlier this year. Who could envisage our parting words “See you on Broadway” would close a show before it even opened.
And what happened to another of our must-sees: Spider-Man the Musical? Slated to be running by now it’s delayed its opening until later in the year at least.
So here we are, brought over on the Virgin Atlantic, eschewing the British Airways for obvious reasons, or as Phil’s sister Liz (Elizabeth and Philip how royal is that?), desperate to be included on these pages christened the troubled BA “Plane Never Flies”. Yes, even siblings are jumping on the Whingers’ ramshackle bandwagon.
As it’s two and a half years since the Whingers were last here not only is there a bit of theatrical catching up to do but we’re desperately in need of new underpants.
So, for one week only the West End Whingers are retired from the West End, but will shortly be resplendent in crisp new undergarments and they’ll be answering to The Broadway Bellyachers.