Charlie and Algernon

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Charlie and Algernon is a musical with a book and lyrics by David Rogers and music by Charles Strouse. It is based on the novel Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes. It received its premiere on 21 December 1978 at The Citadel Theater, in Edmonton, Canada.[1]

The title characters are a mentally retarded man and a laboratory mouse, respectively. Charlie volunteers to participate in an experimental intelligence-enhancing treatment, and his rapid progress parallels that of Algernon, who had been treated earlier. When the mouse's enhanced intelligence begins to fade, Charlie realizes he too is fated to revert to his original mental state.

On June 14, 1979, the musical opened as Flowers for Algernon at Queen's Theatre in London's West End with Michael Crawford as Charlie. In the London staging, Michael Crawford performed one number in a spotlight while the trained white mouse ran from one of his hands to the other, by way of Crawford's shoulders and neck. The audience reaction to this was so positive that Crawford repeated it with another live mouse (while playing an entirely different character) in 2003 while starring in the West End musical The Woman in White.

A Broadway production was directed by Louis W. Scheeder and choreographed by Virginia Freeman. After 12 previews, it opened on September 14, 1980 at the Helen Hayes Theatre and ran for 17 performances. The cast included P. J. Benjamin and Sandy Faison.

Charlie and Algernon was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Original Score. A London cast album was released on the Original Cast Records label.

West End song list[edit]

  • His Name is Charlie Gordon
  • I Got a Friend
  • Some Bright Morning
  • Our Boy Charlie
  • Hey Look at Me!
  • Reading
  • No Surprises
  • Midnight Riding
  • Dream Safe With Me
  • I Can't Tell You
  • Now
  • Charlie and Algernon
  • The Maze
  • Whatever Time There Is
  • Charlie
  • I Really Loved You

Broadway song list[edit]

  • Have I the Right
  • I Got a Friend
  • Some Bright Morning
  • Jelly Donuts and Chocolate Cake
  • Hey Look at Me
  • Reading
  • No Surprises
  • Midnight Riding
  • Dream Safe with Me
  • Not Another Day Like This
  • Somebody New
  • I Can't Tell You
  • Now
  • Charlie and Algernon
  • The Maze
  • Whatever Time There Is
  • Everything Was Perfect
  • Charlie
  • I Really Loved You
  • Whatever Time There Is (Reprise)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Flowers for Algernon". Daniel Keyes. Retrieved 2008-04-22. 

External links[edit]