Via Galactica

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Via Galactica
Via Galactica.jpg
1972 Broadway Playbill
Music Galt MacDermot
Lyrics Christopher Gore
Book Christopher Gore
Judith Ross
Productions 1972 Broadway
For the galaxy, see Milky Way.

Via Galactica is a rock musical with a book by Christopher Gore and Judith Ross, lyrics by Gore, and music by Galt MacDermot. It marked the Broadway debut of actor Mark Baker.[1]

Originally entitled Up!, it offers a futuristic story of social outcasts living on an asteroid in the year 2972. Among them is Gabriel Finn, a space sanitation man who collects trash in a clamshell-shaped garbage ship called the Helen of Troy.

The storyline was so incomprehensible that at the last moment producers decided to insert a plot synopsis in the Playbill, but audiences were still baffled by what they were witnessing unfold on stage. Pyrotechnic displays and other special effects did little to enhance the project.

After fifteen previews, the Broadway production, directed by Peter Hall, produced by George W. George and choreographed by George Faison, opened on November 28, 1972, the first production at the brand new Uris Theatre where, unable to withstand a universal assault by the critics, it ran for only seven performances. The cast included Raul Julia, Irene Cara, Keene Curtis, Chuck Cissel, Ralph Carter, Melanie Chartoff, and Virginia Vestoff.

Via Galactica, one of the first Broadway shows to lose more than $1 million, was MacDermot's second flop of the season. His Dude had closed after 16 performances a mere five weeks earlier.

MacDermot's score has continued to be of interest - with the composer presenting much of the score the Cooper Union on 4 April 2002.



  1. ^ Ian Herbert, ed. (1981). "BAKER, Mark". Who's Who in the Theatre 1. Gale Research Company. p. 37. ISSN 0083-9833. 

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