A long-standing opening night tradition on the Great White Way, the fabled Gypsy Robe is bestowed upon a veteran Broadway chorus member for each opening production. In what has now become a theatrical ritual, originating on Broadway 60 years ago, the latest receipient was SPIDER-MAN cast member Luther Creek at the Foxwoods Theatre in New York City.
At the song and dance ceremony, cast members who were making their Broadway debuts were acknowledged at the center of the stage, and then Kobak proceeded to circle the room in the robe in celebration with the entire cast.
The Gypsy Robe began in 1950, when Bill Bradley, in the chorus of GENTLEMEN PREFER BLONDES, borrowed a dressing gown from Chorus member Florence Baum and sent it to a friend in CALL ME MADAM on opening night Oct 12, 1950 saying it was worn by all the Ziegfeld beauties and would "bless" the show. A cabbage rose from Ethel Merman's gown was added and the robe was passed along to next Broadway musical on opening night. The tradition evolved so that the robe is now presented to the "gypsy" who has performed the most Broadway musicals on a chorus contract. Along the way, the robe is decorated, painted, patched, stitched, and signed by everyone in the show, becoming a fanciful patchwork for an entire Broadway season.
SPIDER-MAN Turn Off The Dark now plays the following performance schedule: Tuesday through Thursday at 7:30 p.m., Wednesday at 1:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday at 8:00 p.m., Saturday at 2:00 p.m., and Sunday at 3:00 p.m.
Photos by Walter McBride / Retna Ltd.
Shannon Lewis Recepient for 'The People In The Picture'
Recipient Shannon Lewis for 'The People In The Picture' & Michael Mulheren
Jennifer Damiano & Reeve Carney
Jodi McFadden & Collin Baja
Michael Mulheren, Isabel Keating, Patrick Page & Nick Wyman
Craig Henningsen & Natalie Lominte
Cast members making their Broadway Debuts
Recipient Shannon Lewis for 'The People In The Picture'