Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Musical Theatre

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— The WikiProject Musical Theatre Team


Theatre Project collaboration[edit]

Shuffle Along on Broadway[edit]

Has anyone seen Shuffle Along, or, the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed? If so, would you please flesh out the Synopsis section of the article with a more detailed summary of the plot? Shoot for about 700 words or so, if you can. Thanks! -- Ssilvers (talk) 05:21, 2 May 2016 (UTC)

I haven't seen it, and have no plans to get to it. Is it a requirement that one see the work in order to write about it?? If so, I will retire immediately from writing plots (although I do not write very many, anyway). How does the requirement in the article structure guidelines that says "The Synopsis should generally be prepared using the musicals' script as a primary source" fit in ?? So I guess the guideline of "between 800 and 1100 words" plot is no longer applicable?? (And good morning to you!) Flami72 (talk) 11:09, 2 May 2016 (UTC)
Hi, Flami. No, certainly it is not required. If you can expand the plot section, please go ahead, by all means! I agree with the article structure guidelines, of course, that the script is the best source to use in summarizing plots. As to length, I also agree with the article structure guidelines' suggestion for optimal length; I was just trying to make it easier on whoever undertakes this initially. The article is also missing a critical reception section, just in case anyone wants to work on that. Happy editing! -- Ssilvers (talk) 19:38, 2 May 2016 (UTC)
Good, thanks for the clarifications! I may work on the critical reception section in the next week or so. I anticipate some Tony nominations, and I like to see what the critics have said. I doubt that I'll work on the plot. Flami72 (talk) 20:04, 2 May 2016 (UTC)

AfD: Ross Campbell (vocal coach)[edit]

This article about a singing teacher who specialises in musical theatre is being discussed for deletion at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Ross Campbell (vocal coach). Voceditenore (talk) 17:37, 18 May 2016 (UTC)

The use of Audience Choice Awards on show articles[edit]

As discussed on Ssilvers's talk page here, I noticed the recent removal of content relating to the Audience Choice Awards on the following show articles: here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here.

Ssilver asked that I respond either at a show's talk or here. My concern is that it appears one user has made these wholesale edits, unilaterally and without consensus.

But more importantly, as has been noted by others, I am also concerned because the Audience Choice Awards are notable. Broadway casts solicit votes from their fans. Nominees attend the reception and awards ceremony. Productions proudly announce their wins on their official websites; and the results are widely published in sources like Playbill, the Theatre League, Entertainment Weekly and internationally reported. So the notion that an audience choice award is inherently "cruft" is curious. That would also dismiss the People's Choice Awards, the American Music Award, the Billboard Music Award, the Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards, etc. But for this project to reject this audience award - in the area of theatre - the only medium where the performers and audience are in live and immediate interaction, is frankly, best rebutted by a few recipients of the award. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia. It is not a taste arbiter. I know you appreciate that your own view regarding the value of this award shouldn't matter. It meets every relevant notability threshold. So Ssilver, please reconsider these edits. X4n6 (talk) 07:41, 7 June 2016 (UTC)

The awards that I removed were mostly added by an IP recently. First of all, let's be clear. I removed Audience Choice Awards from the Awards tables of several articles about musicals. I have less objection to the information being mentioned in bio articles and have not removed any award information from a person's bio article. The reason that I removed the Audience Choice Awards is that this is an encyclopedia, not a fan site. It is a shame that some editors have insisted on taking up a large portion of the space in musical theatre articles with these bloated awards tables (this only started happening a few years ago), which would be better presented as a compact narrative paragraph instead. But even if we do not have the energy to resist the tablification(?) of the awards sections, at least we should trim these tables down to encyclopedic information. Audience awards and other fan voting are not encyclopedic with respect to musicals. As WP:NOT states: "Wikipedia is not an indiscriminate collection of information." By including trivia and fancruft, we bring discredit to this encyclopedia and clutter it up. The skill in writing a good encyclopedia article is to winnow down the content to include only key encyclopedic information. X4n6 asks about People's Choice Awards, American Music Award, Billboard Music Award and Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards. None of these awards go on Musical theatre articles, so they are irrelevant. However, I will say that I really would prefer that these tables only include the three most prestigious national awards, like Tony Awards, Olivier Awards and Drama Desk awards, as well as the Theatre World Award. If a show did not play on B'way or the West End, then lesser awards may become more relevant, but once a show wins a bunch of Tonys, what encyclopedic value is added by noting that some well-known actor in it with a social media following also got an audience choice award nomination? Finally, just because something is notable enough to get its own article does not meant that it belongs, and must be mentioned, in all related articles. -- Ssilvers (talk) 09:21, 7 June 2016 (UTC)
  • This strikes me as a wholly arbitrary and illusory standard. As there is no factual basis or precedent for the notion that an award is good enough to be listed with individual recipients, but it is not good enough to be listed with productions which are also award winners. While Wikipedia is not a fansite, per WP:NOT, NOT, also states, "Although some topics... may stir passions and tempt people to "climb soapboxes" (for example, passionately advocate their pet point of view), Wikipedia is not the medium for this." Nor is it the medium for opinion editing as both WP:NOTOPINION and WP:NPOV confirm. And the concern that they were IP edits, ignores both WP:URIP2 and WP:IPDIS. Ssilver also entirely misses the point regarding People's Choice Awards, American Music Award, Billboard Music Award and Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards. Like the Audience Choice Awards , they are audience awards. If Ssilver would like to make the argument that audience awards are valuable in every area of performance accept live theatre, I would want to why. And the suggestion that perhaps only "the three most prestigious national awards, like Tony Awards, Olivier Awards and Drama Desk awards, as well as the Theatre World Award" are included, perfectly illustrates the problem. It also eliminates the Obie Award, nationally, and dismisses important regional awards like the Helen Hayes Award, Joseph Jefferson Awards, Suzi Bass Award, etc. It also ignores that several shows that ultimately play on Broadway, started out-of-town, where regional theatre awards were often won. It would be a shame if readers could only find "the three most prestigious national awards." Again, that is wholly arbitrary and not at all encyclopedic. Wikipedia is also not a Reader's Digest Condensed Book. And if, as I've already shown, award nominees, winners and reliable sources accept the value of this award, who are Wikipedians to challenge that? Especially unilaterally. Finally, the threshold this project requires is WP:Notability. Beyond that, it is useful to review WP:LISTCRITERIA, which says "Selection criteria (also known as inclusion criteria or membership criteria) should be unambiguous, objective, and supported by reliable sources." These edits meet none of those criteria. X4n6 (talk) 08:15, 8 June 2016 (UTC)
I agree with Ssilvers here. Only the most prestigious awards should be used on these articles to avoid cluttering the page with too much information. A source that may seem notable to one editor may not seem so to another, but when we are talking about the Tony Awards, Olivier Awards, Drama Desk awards and the Theatre World Award we are all in agreement that these are notable. Jack1956 (talk) 10:19, 7 June 2016 (UTC)
When did we get into the business of making value judgments about the level of "prestige" we unilaterally attribute to awards? What policy supports that endeavor and how is it determined? As you pointed out, certain awards are "notable." The Razzies are hardly prestigious - but they are unquestionably notable. And that is the full extent of our responsibility. To report provable notability. Not to engage in entirely subjective value judgments. X4n6 (talk) 07:53, 8 June 2016 (UTC)
We are exactly in the business of making value judgments. An encyclopedia reports only the most important information, not all notable information. Indeed, "notability guidelines do not apply to content within an article. Content coverage within a given article or list (i.e. whether something is noteworthy enough to be mentioned in the article or list) is governed by the principle of due weight and other content policies." Therefore, our responsibility as editors is to make judgment calls about what information is most important and encyclopedic with respect to the particular topic that we are writing about. There are enough notable facts about, say, the United States, to fill many books. But the encyclopedia article about it must pick and choose the most important ones to present in an encyclopedic format. The Featured Articles about Carousel, South Pacific and The King and I show a much more compact way to do awards that is much more appropriate for a musical theatre article. Also, if a show is not on Broadway or in the West End, it won't be eligible generally for Tonys or Oliviers. In that case, Obies become relevant. One needs to keep in mind the particular show that we are writing about, and not be a robot, just throwing in the kitchen sink. -- Ssilvers (talk) 09:11, 8 June 2016 (UTC)
We are in the business of being an encyclopedia, with a stated mission of objectively disseminating noteworthy and reliably sourced information from a neutral point of view. This neutrality is voided when anonymous users elect to supplant their own personal biases for well-established and long-standing industry standards. Nowhere does WP support that. The closest this project entertains, is the requirement for consensus, which these wholesale edits never obtained, nor have now. Nor are they attributed to any reliable source which supports a methodology that justifies them. There are also innumerable examples on this project where the principle of due weight was abused and misinterpreted. In this instance, there is nothing to suggest that this award, listed alongside other related awards, constitutes anything undue. And even if there were, it would have to be done on an article-by-article, case-by-case basis, not just invoked as a blanket cure all. These edits also presume readers are incapable of discerning the level of weight they wish to attribute to this award. Nor has any response ever been provided which explains, as noted above, why these awards are acceptable for inclusion in performers' articles, but not in show articles. That defies logic and the inherent contradiction is clear. If the awards are supposedly too insignificant for inclusion in a show article, then the award is just as insignificant for inclusion in a performer article. The award itself does not change contingent upon its recipient. The double standard is glaring. And yes, a well-sourced article here does confer notability, which justifies inclusion in other articles where applicable. Again, as was also noted above, per WP:LSC: "Selection criteria (also known as inclusion criteria or membership criteria) should be unambiguous, objective, and supported by reliable sources." These edits meet none of those criteria. And that criteria is definitive, as it is also reflective of policies, practices and guidelines across the spectrum of this project. This remains unchanged by any explanations provided here. We also need to finally correct the recurrent error that claims this award only applies to musical theatre - as much of the opposing argument has hinged upon this fallacy. The fact is, this award recognizes both plays and musical theatre - and has, since its inception 16 years ago. X4n6 (talk) 11:35, 8 June 2016 (UTC)

WP:LSC is only for list articles. The problem here may be that you don't understand the difference between regular articles and list articles. -- Ssilvers (talk) 18:34, 8 June 2016 (UTC)

Actually, as WP:Source list makes quite clear: "whether they are stand-alone lists (also called list articles) or embedded lists, are encyclopedic content just as paragraph-only articles or sections are. Therefore, all individual items on the list must follow Wikipedia's content policies: the core content policies of Verifiability (through good sources in the item's one or more references), No original research, and Neutral point of view, plus the other content policies as well. Although the format of a list might require less detail per topic, Wikipedia policies and procedures apply equally to both a list of similar things as well as to any related article to which an individual thing on the list might be linked." Which is precisely my point. X4n6 (talk) 10:59, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
No, you've got it backwards. That guideline says that all list items must follow Wikipedia's content guidelines. It does not say that embedded lists must include all notable items that could possibly be relevant to the embedded list. -- Ssilvers (talk) 17:20, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment I think I'm leaning toward not including "audience" awards. They've always struck me as more fancruft than any real measure of excellence. We can include all sorts of nonsense in all sorts of articles, but we don't, because our editorial judgement is that somethings are less important than others. without that judgement we can include almost anything and our articles would be book length, not the subject summary we aim for. – SchroCat (talk) 17:42, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment – I'm rather relieved to see SchroCat's wise comment above, as it makes me think I am not as out-of-step with mainstream opinion as I thought. (Full disclosure: SchroCat and I are frequent collaborators on WP, but we haven't discussed this point.) When in doubt, I try to ask myself what a visitor to an encyclopaedia article is looking for. American readers, from what I can gather, seem interested in awards, sometimes to the point of obsession, whereas to a European eye such decorations are not terribly fascinating. Still, if American—and any other—readers expect to see mention of awards, they should be accommodated. Which awards should be included? In my view they should be strictly confined to the recognised top level—Oscars, Tonys etc. – Tim riley talk 18:33, 9 June 2016 (UTC)

The Black Crook[edit]

Can anyone tell if this edit is legitimate? The references do not include page numbers, and the second one must mean "Herald", not "Harold", unless the whole edit is a prank: Thanks for any help! -- Ssilvers (talk) 20:06, 1 July 2016 (UTC)

I have no way of looking at the cited articles. I did find this interesting article at the New York Public Library web site, from June 2, 2011, which mentions the Herald, at [1]]. There is also some mention of the Herald's criticism in the book Horrible Prettiness: Burlesque and American Culture, by Robert C. Allen, page 113. ([2]]). I do not know where else to search, nor do I have much time (or energy) to do anything else on this. Flami72 (talk) 20:34, 1 July 2016 (UTC)
Thanks! Very helpful! -- Ssilvers (talk) 01:01, 2 July 2016 (UTC)

"Current cast" and "closing cast" columns in Cast/roles tables in Musical Articles[edit]

So, Ssilvers and I have been having a discussion about the Hamilton (musical) article, specifically the inclusion of the Current Broadway Cast in the table in the Roles and principal cast section. I believe that the current cast information is encyclopedic and worth noting, since it shows who is currently playing the role. I point to the precedent set by other recent shows, such as Wicked (musical) & The Book of Mormon (musical) (the first two musicals to pop into my head). Ssilvers believes that such information is WP:FANCRUFT, and points to featured articles, Carousel (musical) & South Pacific (musical), or a good article, Hair (musical), as precedent. I would like to point out that none of those musicals are currently running, so they aren't the best precedent. I am not a member of this WikiProject (Ssilvers is), however, I am just looking for more input, a project policy, and/or the creation of a project policy. Thanks, Elisfkc (talk) 18:29, 14 July 2016 (UTC)

Yes, I believe that a "Current B'way Cast" (or "Current West End Cast") column in cast tables is WP:FANCRUFT and also violates the spirit of WP:PROMO, since the column is promotional in nature. I believe the same thing about "Closing Cast" columns. Also note that the column is redundant, since the footnotes under the table contain a list of notable Broadway cast replacements. I believe that Cast tables in musical theatre articles best serve an encyclopedic purpose when they present only the original cast of the most important productions of the musical.
Our guideline, WP:WikiProject Musical Theatre/Article Structure, deals with this specifically (under "Productions"): "For the original Broadway or West End production, there may be a cast list, with notable actors bluelinked, or the casting may be described in prose. Please do not delete such lists. However, there should not be full lists of replacement casts. Notable replacement actors can be named either next to the original cast list or in prose in the description of the production. Other productions should merely name the notable actors and production team members who have Wikipedia articles and can be blue-linked, unless their names are important to an understanding of the musical and its history. A citation to the full cast lists can be given so that the information is easily accessible to anyone who needs this information." -- Ssilvers (talk) 18:53, 14 July 2016 (UTC)
In my experience, I believe Ssilvers tends to broadly interpret what is considered "fancruft." However, I would also note that fancruft is NOT a Wikipedia policy and should not be treated as one. It is merely an essay, nothing more. I would also remind folks that project guidelines are also not policy - as projects explicitly have no special rights or privileges and may not impose their preferences on articles. That said, I agree with Elisfkc that the listing of current Broadway casts is both useful and informative and should be included. In my view, closing casts should also be treated the same way, because they are both historical and encyclopedic inclusions. X4n6 (talk) 05:29, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Definitely fancruft – and smacks of RECENTISM too. We are not a listings site and I find that the 'current cast' normally falls outside what is encyclopaedic. – SchroCat (talk) 06:18, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Neither fancruft nor recentism are policies. Whether either even applies is also debatable. For example, how is the closing cast of a show that closed months/years ago, recentism? Keeping in mind, again, that neither claim would form a basis for exclusion anyway. X4n6 (talk) 06:39, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
I am well aware that they are essays, but the rationale behind them is persuasive. Either way, we are still not a listings site or a repository of unencyclopaedic trivia. There is also a matter of undue WP:WEIGHT being applied with the RECENTISM: why this one list: why not all the cast lists from all productions? - SchroCat (talk) 06:52, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
I still see no evidence of recentism; and essays are simply that. Their level of persuasion being purely a matter of conjecture. In fact, as FANCRUFT correctly notes, as applies to all essays, they often represent minority viewpoints. Weight is also one of the most overused and misused claims made on this project, usually as a replacement for more substantive arguments. In this case, I see nothing where WEIGHT applies, as it goes to viewpoint. No viewpoint is expressed by listing closing casts in a musical. But the historical importance and significance are obvious. They are also encyclopedic. Like so many other lists on this project are historical and encyclopedic. I see no reason or value in treating this field any differently. X4n6 (talk) 07:17, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
All I see here is ILIKEIT and you trying to ignore TWO policies I included, WEIGHT (yes, there is an issue, whether you like it or not - WEIGHT does not "goes to viewpoint", however much you try and twist it), and WP:NOT - we are not a repository of unencyclopaedic trivia. There is nothing of "historical importance and significance" in including fluff such as this. - SchroCat (talk) 07:23, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
I haven't ignored any policies, as much as I've said I don't see that they've been properly applied here. Nor have you explained how you believe they do apply, beyond simply acting as though invoking the very words "fluff" or "fancruft" or "weight" can be used as some sort of cudgel to end all subsequent discussion. If you will actually review WEIGHT, you'll see the word "viewpoint" is listed EIGHT TIMES. So its useless trying to pretend viewpoint doesn't provide the basis for the policy. As to NOT, no WP is not a paper encyclopedia. It is a digital one. Still, per WP:5P1, Wikipedia is an encyclopedia. I've also correctly noted that two essays which you've referenced are not policies, despite your efforts to "enforce" them as though they were. Nor have you even attempted to respond to my concern that you're attempting to enforce "rules" here that don't apply anywhere else on this project. X4n6 (talk) 07:45, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
I am not trying to "enforce" anything, but to provide several essays and policies that generally point to one direction. I have no idea why you think you need to point out WP is not a paper encyclopaedia (no shit, Sherlock), but you seem to be missing the point as to what encyclopaedic means, and the dross you think is worth carrying is not encyclopaedic. As to WEIGHT, yes, you are breaching that too, by providing too much focus on the recent and unremarkable; why the cast list for this particular run? You should be either providing them all or none, or those the reliable sources tell us are truly noteworthy. As you don't seem to be listening to what I've written, and are missing out most of the points I've lain out before you, I'll let others give their opinions, as ICANTHEARYOU seems to be the order of advance here. - SchroCat (talk) 07:59, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Once again you rely on essays. To use your terminology so that you clearly understand: I really don't give a shit about essays. Clear now? Regarding policies on the other hand, I am perfectly prepared to have that discussion. While you also claim I don't hear your arguments, where are your well-reasoned responses to mine? I've said WEIGHT goes to viewpoint and proved it by noting how many times the word appears. Your response? Crickets. You just regurgitated your claims of RECENTISM, which I had already challenged by asking you about shows which closed months/years ago. Again, where was your response? There was none. But since you've assumed my concerns were about this particular show, let me clearly answer you again: I think we should be adding closing cast lists for ALL shows that editors can reliably source. Per WP:PURPLIST below, this is significant and historical "information." Now I've answered you. Can you answer me? X4n6 (talk) 08:45, 15 July 2016 (UTC)

[left] I think I've had this discussion with x4n6 before, but being a good editor requires judgment. We must choose what is most important and noteworthy about a particular topic. WP:NOTEWORTHY states: "Content coverage within a given article or list (i.e. whether something is noteworthy enough to be mentioned in the article or list) is governed by the principle of due weight and other content policies." That is, we need to apply wise WP:editorial discretion to determine encyclopedic content, keeping in mind WP:WEIGHT, WP:PROMO and the other parts of WP:NOT, and avoid fancruft and other unencyclopedic clutter. Anyhow, we know what the four of us think. Anyone else? -- Ssilvers (talk) 07:26, 15 July 2016 (UTC)

I'm not sure it's worth carrying on this discussion, Ssilvers: ICANTHEARYOU and IDONTLIKEIT seem to be the method of ignoring and misinterpreting all guidelines and comments that do not support this users deeply entrenched opinions. - SchroCat (talk) 08:25, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Rather than threatening to take your ball and go home, you could see that I've responded to you - in detail - above. But it remains to be seen if you're capable of responding as reasonably. X4n6 (talk) 08:51, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
What a charmless little editor you are. I am not "threatening to take your ball and go home" as you so childishly put it: I have better things to do than try and discuss matters with an inflexible timewaster who doesn't like to have their concrete opinions to be brought into question. You have had policies shown to you and you have misinterpreted them to your own ends. As I said before - it's time for to deal with less inflexible people than the arrogance I've seen on display from you. Well done on your BATTLEFIELD approach to deal with the AGF of others. Excellent collegiate approach you have. - SchroCat (talk) 09:15, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Why anyone ever even bothers to try to engage with you must be one of the great mysteries of the modern age. Invariably your fall back position whenever you've lost the argument, (which is regularly), is to revert to the churlish and ridiculous. That you still call essays "policies" speaks volumes about your level of comprehension here. But even worse, that you of all people, would have the temerity to call another editor childish - then try to shroud yourself in AGF - is itself a laugh. Market that hubris. Can't win on the merits, resort to ad hominems. Eh, that's fine. I pretty much knew whom I was dealing with all along. I knew it wouldn't take long before you blew a gasket and exposed yourself. But now, per WP:DNFTT, I really can ignore you. Willingly. X4n6 (talk) 09:51, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Don't add lying to the list of your numerous other faults. I have not claimed that any of the essays I have quoted are policies. I have provided some essays and some policies. The fact that you are unable to tell the difference speaks volumes. If you are unable to be honest on something so clear to everyone who reads this, then your tendentious idiocy can safely be ignored. - SchroCat (talk) 09:54, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
I am confident the record here is crystal clear. It cannot be altered in your favor. You wrote: "You have had policies shown to you" so I quoted you, pointing out that you still seem to think essays are policies. So the only liar here is you. I'll work with anyone here who is not you. But feel free to continue your screed, as I won't feed you again, little troll. But I will grant you your last hissy fit now - because your fragile little ego desperately requires it. But it will hardly be the prevailing word. X4n6 (talk) 10:19, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Editors: Pls also see here that this user originally attempted to censor the above comment, claiming NPA. But given this user's litany of ad hominems above - which I chose not to remove - that alone speaks volumes. X4n6 (talk) 10:51, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Unlike other policies and guidelines, and what may or may not be their applicability, I do believe the style guide's WP:PURPLIST is useful here: "Information. The list may be a valuable information source. This is particularly the case for a structured list. Examples would include lists organized chronologically, grouped by theme, or annotated lists." While WP:editorial discretion is merely another essay, not a policy, guideline or style guide. But WP:LISTN, while mostly addressing standalone lists, does states: "Lists that fulfill recognized informational, navigation, or development purposes often are kept regardless of any demonstrated notability." Also would you explain how you believe PROMO applies? Because like WEIGHT and NOT, I see no relevance here. Just as I remain concerned that certain, likely minority opinion essays, like FANCRUFT, are being routinely misinterpreted as policies. X4n6 (talk) 08:21, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Remove unnecessary cast list as we are not a listings site and in my opinion this list is unencyclopedic. Jack1956 (talk) 18:13, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Are we actually voting now? As it doesn't appear this is a real RFC. But if you will indulge questions, I would ask you why you feel the list is non-encylopedic? And what separates closing night from opening night cast lists? Perhaps you'd like to see no cast lists at all? X4n6 (talk) 22:28, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Opening night cast is the one that media sources have considered the most important since the birth of theatre. It is the one that is reviewed by the major critics, eligible for the major theatre awards, remembered for originating roles, and written about in theatre books. Sometimes a replacement player becomes known for a role, but rarely; most of the replacement cast is not as well-known as the original cast, and the footnotes under the table do an excellent job of noting the notable replacement players. -- Ssilvers (talk) 00:31, 16 July 2016 (UTC)
Those with actual knowledge of the Broadway, West End or professional theatre communities know that since the birth of theatre, a show's closing date is as significant, if not more so, than its opening. A beloved show does not become beloved on opening night. Nor does a long running show enjoy its long run on opening night. Closing night casts become the beneficiaries of all the goodwill an important or beloved show has accrued. Media coverage of shows that have attained that status is routine and closing night casts are the most important components of the closing night experience. To suggest that the importance of a cast ends after opening night, is to completely miss the point. As anniversary productions and closing night celebrations of shows from "A Chorus Line" to "Les Miz" to "Billy Elliot" to "42nd Street" to "Dreamgirls" et al attest, the casts during the complete run of Broadway/West End shows are significant and of historical, cultural and informational importance. The Internet Broadway Database also does not list just the opening night casts. If an encyclopedia cannot chronicle such encyclopedic information, it has no purpose. X4n6 (talk) 05:35, 16 July 2016 (UTC)
Just because you have a party does not mean that closing night is more important than opening night. But in any event, you make my case: The IBDB lists the full opening night cast, and then it just notes replacement players, rather than repeating a full cast list for any night other than opening night. But the IBDB's mission is different from ours: It intends to give complete casting information. We are WP:NOT a directory or database, and so we only give the most important information: opening night principal cast, other notable players, and notable replacement players. -- Ssilvers (talk) 06:05, 16 July 2016 (UTC)
It's actually opening nights which traditionally have what is known as a cast party. Closing night parties are a bit more democratic and generally include cast and crew. They're obviously also a bit more subdued. Because this is the final time that people who have seen each other eight times a week, for weeks, months or years, will all be in the room at the same time. But I'm not really sure what your point is there. However, I do think you misread IBDB. It lists complete casts. The very thing which you're opposed to here. But it does so because in one very important way, IBDB's mission is identical to ours: to record important contributions to the shows we both report on. They do that. And you've neglected to point out that we've done that too. For years. So it's important to note that you're not defending current practices. You're advocating changing them. And for no reason that I find compelling, or even necessary. Also WP:NOT is intentionally overbroad and vague. So it's not a particularly useful policy to cite in its totality. If you have a specific section of it that you believe applies here, it would be preferable to reference that section, so we can discuss it. Otherwise, you could apply it as a blanket objection to virtually everything and anything, which would be a pretty clear misreading of its intent. X4n6 (talk) 07:44, 16 July 2016 (UTC)
No, you're simply wrong. IBDB lists the opening cast of a production. Then it shows cast replacements in a chronological order. -- Ssilvers (talk) 08:21, 16 July 2016 (UTC)
No, I must correct you. IBDB lists the entire casts of Broadway productions. On a show's page it lists opening night credits - but it also lists current casts. And on individual performers' pages, it lists their complete Broadway credits. In fact, IBDB endeavors to list every performer who has ever appeared in a Broadway show. X4n6 (talk) 08:42, 16 July 2016 (UTC)
Yes, IBDB is a directory whose purpose is promote theatre and provide complete information within their remit, unlike Wikipedia, which is an encyclopedia that gives the most important one-stop information about a topic. I see that IBDB has begun to show current cast for some shows, but this is a new development. Anyhow, as I noted above, the Musical Theatre project's own guideline clearly states that there should not be full lists of replacement casts. This is consistent with the principles of WP:NOT, WP:WEIGHT, WP:PROMO, WP:FANCRUFT and WP:RECENT. Also, no WP:Featured Articles on musicals include multiple cast lists for any one production of a musical. In fact, they usually use a very compact table showing the opening cast and also the notable people who have performed principal roles in major, long-running productions of the musical. See, for example, The King and I and Carousel (musical). Obviously you and I disagree, so let's hear from other users who work regularly on musical theatre articles. -- Ssilvers (talk) 09:39, 16 July 2016 (UTC)
I'm pleased that you now see that IBDB lists current casts. Not for some shows, but for all Broadway shows which are currently running. It is even beginning to list tour casts. Perhaps it has been a while since you reviewed IBDB. But their inclusion goes directly to the merits of your position, because it defeats the basis of your entire argument that current and closing casts are fundamentally insignificant. Additionally, I have already asked that you address any specific issues which you feel are relevant per WP:NOT, as simply name-checking a gaggle of unenforceable and non-policy essays like FANCRUFT - which itself warns that it may only represent a minority viewpoint - and WP:RECENT, which is nothing but another essay, not a policy or guideline. Nor does it even apply, as a current cast is hardly breaking news. You've also provided no explanations regarding the relevance of the actual policies which you have referenced. Just "listing" them, as it were, is thoroughly non-persuasive. Regarding WP:PROMO you haven't shown which section you believe is relevant. The claim certainly fails the 5 tests of that policy. There is nothing promotional about listing the cast of a show, no more than listing the name of the show itself is promotional. And if PROMO were to apply to any cast, it would apply to all casts. Clearly an overreach. The same with WP:WEIGHT, which applies to the question of expressing a viewpoint. Listing a cast does not express any viewpoint whatsoever. It is not an opinion. It is a statement of fact. Nor when properly sourced, does it violate any tenet of neutrality or balance. As to your arguments about WP:Featured Articles, I also don't see how they're relevant. While lovely, not ever article aspires to FA status, nor should it; nor by requirement would most attain it even if they tried, as only a few representational articles can ever be selected. But while FA is a bragging point among editors, it has little interest or utility to the vast majority of the readers - who are our primary responsibility. And their only reason for utilizing this project, is to find the information they're looking for. Either an article has that information, or it does not. The overwhelming majority of readers couldn't care less about what little awards editors have bestowed on articles as some internal function. Our job here is to adhere to the tenets of an encyclopedia, as noted with Wikipedia:Wikipedia is an encyclopedia.
But finally, it also appears that you need to be reminded that, per Wikipedia:WikiProject, projects are not rule-making organizations, so their guidelines are unenforceable. Projects have no special rights or privileges and may not impose their preferences on articles. Your entire claim appears to rest on the simple theory that only Andrea McArdle, who created the role of Annie, is significant enough to be included in the cast list of the article on that musical. I disagree. I believe that article is incomplete if it ignores the fact that Shelly Bruce, Sarah Jessica Parker and Allison Smith also all attained stardom performing that role on Broadway. And they should be included in any cast lists, not as a standalone codicil or footnote. As I've pointed out before, you are looking to fundamentally change the way this project has edited for years. The onus is, therefore, on you to make a compelling case for that change. You simply have not done so. So I believe it's time that we move on. X4n6 (talk) 19:35, 16 July 2016 (UTC)

[left] Totally wrong. The other notable actresses should be listed under the cast list as notable replacements (ironically, you chose Annie as an example, but that article doesn't currently include ANY full cast list or casting table, so perhaps you don't understand what we're talking about). I know that you are in favor of adding redundant and unencyclopedic information into musical theatre articles. How about other editors? -- Ssilvers (talk) 20:40, 16 July 2016 (UTC)

You need to understand nothing is "totally wrong" simply because you choose to disagree with it. That retort is not only unresponsive, but it doesn't help or collaborate. In fact, it just exposes the flaws in your arguments, since you're unable to defend them better. As to the Annie example, again, you missed the point. The current article wasn't referenced as a model. Just the opposite. I noted the article was incomplete as it did not include cast lists with all those actresses included. However, if you're unable or unwilling to respond: not only to the answers I've given you, but to the questions I've asked you; then it's probably best we end this now. X4n6 (talk) 19:42, 17 July 2016 (UTC)
What I like about User:Ssilvers's thinking is that it is so carefully considered and thought out. Even a brief look at musical theatre reviews reveals that the opening cast is by far the most important (the only exception I can think of in the past 15 years is Annie Get Your Gun with Reba MacInytre as the replacement). Sorry, User:X4n6 but you'll need to have a much more extensive and convincing argument for me to consider your point of view. - kosboot (talk) 02:14, 17 July 2016 (UTC)
Sorry too, kosboot, but because your response, as expressed, doesn't make sense. Musical theatre reviews, like all theatre reviews, discuss opening casts because shows are traditionally only reviewed once opened. So I don't follow your point. But it is true that long-running shows often get re-reviewed, especially on Broadway. In noting that, you've actually helped advance my point: which is that subsequent casts are also of significant and intrinsic value in discussing the history of any show. Your example supports that argument. Also keep one other thing in mind: I am not the editor advocating changing editing practices here. So it's not my job to convince you of anything. But like you, I have yet to see "a much more extensive and convincing argument for me to consider [that] point of view." X4n6 (talk) 20:15, 17 July 2016 (UTC)
And sorry to you User:X4n6 but I see you're only too happy to turn a person's words into an argument supporting your point of view even when the words themself absolutely do not support your argument. I could say anything and you'll turn it into something you want to believe. You say "long-running shows often get re-viewed" - I would say selectively, particularly the majority of shows are not long-running. Secondly, aside from those rare exceptions, other than newspaper reviews, what sources put equal weight to succeeding casts? Maybe some reference books note a few cases where there were important successions, but the most important reference books (Bloom, Norton, Gänzl) state only the opening cast. The idea that the opening casts is more significant is supported by those cases where the opening cast is the one for whom the show was created - there are numerous examples of where the show's creators tailored dialogue and character to the opening night cast. - kosboot (talk) 00:14, 18 July 2016 (UTC)
Well I'm sorry again, kosboot. For carefully reviewing what you wrote; then trying to figure out where you were coming from; and then trying to find some common ground. Sorry that approach has apparently offended you. Would you prefer more contentiousness and less collaboration? Again, sorry. But the fact is, you are correct that the majority of shows are not long running. But in those cases, the question of subsequent casts is moot, isn't it? Because the closing cast is usually exactly the same as the opening cast. But I will point to one area where you have misstated the case. The question was never: are subsequent casts as significant as opening casts? The questions were always: are subsequent casts significant in their own right? And are they even significant at all? The only correct answer to both of those questions is: Of course, yes. They are listed in books that attempt to chronicle the complete history of Broadway shows and productions. They are listed on websites which dutifully report cast replacements on Broadway and on tour. They are also recorded on the Internet Broadway Database, which was created by The Broadway League, "the national trade association for Broadway" that "provides a comprehensive database of shows produced on Broadway". In fact, IBDB lists Broadway opening night casts; current Broadway casts; as well as current Broadway national tour casts. Also, Broadway national tour casts generally get reviewed in every city in which they perform. So not only do Broadway shows occasionally get re-reviewed, but Broadway tours get reviewed constantly. The fact is, Broadway touring casts get reviewed far more than Broadway opening casts and current Broadway casts combined. So there's the correct answer. Broadway itself considers them all significant and their reviews consider them all significant. But the real issue here, is that we've always been able to list those casts. Shouldn't we continue to be able to do so? And if not, then why not? The current standards and practices don't need defending. But any changes or new limitations potentially being imposed on them, that would only further inhibit editors or confound readers, do. X4n6 (talk) 08:09, 18 July 2016 (UTC)

I'm late to the table, having earlier looked in briefly and then looked out again. But returning to the matter and giving it the consideration it merits, although I see what those of a contrary view are getting at, nonetheless I think the case made by Ssilvers (who - for the record - is a regular collaborator of mine in other areas of WP) is convincing. What constitutes 'encyclopaedic' is of course a matter of personal opinion, but Ssilvers's take on it so far as cast listings are concerned seems to me sensible, and, crucially, in line with the prevailing consensus among regular contributors to articles on musicals. Those who would like to list casts galore have, it seems to me, failed to make a case for its being useful to our readers. Tim riley talk 15:27, 17 July 2016 (UTC)

I appreciate your thoughts, as well as your candor in acknowledging that you regularly collaborate with the editor advocating this change. We all agree that what defines "encyclopedic" information is reasonably subject to discussion. Where it appears we disagree, is two-fold: in the view that projects, and by extension their members, may enforce guidelines, special rights or privileges, or may impose those preferences on articles, or other editors. And second, I believe perhaps, you misread the status quo. The editor advocating a change in the status quo is not me - but the editor you've mentioned. My response is that no clear or compelling reason, or need to do that, has been shown. X4n6 (talk) 20:45, 17 July 2016 (UTC)
I hear what you say, but does anyone else agree with you? Tim riley talk 21:19, 17 July 2016 (UTC)
Fair question. Sure. As just mentioned above: the Internet Broadway Database and by extension, The Broadway League do. And also the books, websites and newspapers across the country who regularly review Broadway touring production casts and dutifully report those cast lists do. Not to mention all the editors on this project who have, for years, worked on cast lists for theatre articles without an issue; and the readers who have regularly come here expecting to find that information. So who else do I need? X4n6 (talk) 08:19, 18 July 2016 (UTC)
Other sites no doubt have their own protocols and policies, but so far as Wikipedia is concerned, as far as I can see from a quick scan of the extensive exchanges above, all the other people who have expressed a view disagree with you. Tim riley talk 13:42, 18 July 2016 (UTC)
I thought you were asking me for real world applications. I also answered from Wikipedia's historical and past practices perspectives. Now I see you were asking re: the discussion here. So quick scan again, to the very top of this section. You'll see that I didn't begin this discussion. I agree with the editor who did. X4n6 (talk) 19:53, 18 July 2016 (UTC)
My own particular WP interest is opera, where we are pretty rigorous about giving original cast details in a table and mentioning any notable variants in later peformances in the text. I don't see that the Broadway form of Musiktheater need start spawning multiple listings. I've had a look at a couple of FAs on musicals and they are broadly on the same lines as the operas: the original cast is listed and notable later players are mentioned ad hoc. Those who want detailed information about casts rather than the works are well served elsewhere, e.g. at Operabase and the Broadway equivalents, which can offer a multiplicity of detail that we couldn't possibly aim at here in our articles about the actual works. I suggest it would be wise to stick with the established modus operandi for musicals as in those FAs (e.g. South Pacific) Tim riley talk 13:12, 19 July 2016 (UTC)
As it turns out, I too am an operaphile, Tim - so "Brindisi!" But like most, probably, I'm not overly invested in the original casts in opera, simply because I'm not particularly conversant with the singers of a century or more past. I'm much more engaged with the singers of the recording age: as I can actually play the game of listening to and comparing a Björling with a Pavarotti, Di Stefano, Del Monaco, Caruso, Lanza, Alagna or Domingo. So in that sense, I'm not really sure it's an apt comparison. By contrast, Broadway is quite different. A Broadway show can run for many years, without a break, in the same theatre - whereas an opera, even if it's one of the warhorses, as you know, only appears in far less occasional rotation within a company's repertoire. Additionally, even when Broadway attempts to mount an operatic-style production, it does so with multiple casts, as with a Les Miz, or Phantom or even a La Bohème. Also Broadway regularly mounts and launches national tours of its most successful productions, something unheard of in opera. Loaning out productions, which does happen frequently, isn't really analagous; as only the sets travel, not the casts. So, as much as I can appreciate your point, I do think the comparison is apples and oranges. I'm also less inclined to favor the notion of projects dictating guidelines in articles, even if one of those guidelines is to promote FAs. While I realize that's heretical to those who labor well in the vineyard in service to their interests, it still remains a fundamental tenet here and I believe with good reason. As I've said before, we are an encyclopedia. And while I certainly don't subscribe to the notion that this compels us to dutifully note every single jot of minutiae, I also don't subscribe to the notion that Broadway casts - whether past or present - or the Broadway-quality tours they produce, are minutiae. Just take a look at our article for Les Misérables (musical). Then tell me the article would be better served with less information about the various casts. X4n6 (talk) 22:38, 19 July 2016 (UTC)
Looks pretty cluttered and unhelpful to me, and the choice of productions is amusingly arbitrary. No Spain? Paris revivals? Don't Australian productions matter? Or Canadian? Etc, etc. It's a B class article I note. Much better to join the top table and follow the pattern established in the Featured Articles. If people want listings there are sites especially devoted to them. Wikipedia, per contra, isn't a listings site: it is an encyclopaedia. Tim riley talk 07:15, 20 July 2016 (UTC)
Well, agree to disagree. I'd much rather see reasonable attempts at including such useful information, per WP:WIP, rather than absolutely zero attempt at all. That's been standard practice here, since the beginning. And I see no reason to change it. Precisely because this is an encyclopedia, not a digest. X4n6 (talk) 07:45, 20 July 2016 (UTC)
WP:WIP is an essay. It's an odd thing to throw in the mix from someone who says "I really don't give a shit about essays." - SchroCat (talk) 11:47, 20 July 2016 (UTC)
I don't. But obviously you and others do, so it was an appropriate reference. And certainly not my only one. Just as, contextually, that was an appropriate response to you. Anyway, it's nice to see you've been following along. I hope it's taught you how to disagree and still be civil. X4n6 (talk) 18:35, 20 July 2016 (UTC)
Considering what an obnoxious troll you've been throughout, the thing is surprise that you've not been blocked for your battleground approach, bludgeoning of others, 'I don't hear you' lack of interaction and tendentious baiting and trolling, despite being in a small minority with little to back you up but your own misguided opinion. Time for you to troll off elsewhere and for me to leave you to have an attempt at some pathetic riposte. Tootle pip. – SchroCat (talk) 19:29, 20 July 2016 (UTC)
And with that, I have my answer. Even when given an opportunity to exhibit even some fledgling capacity for equanimity, you never fail to take the low road: the dispensing of ad hominems being your lone suit. And your only "contribution." Sadly, you always reliably revert to your natural mein: which is jackass. Yawn. X4n6 (talk) 00:02, 21 July 2016 (UTC)
SchroCat does lots of excellent work on Wikipedia, creating, improving and promoting numerous articles to WP:Featured Article. Some others mostly add trivia and WP:FANCRUFT and bloated tables to articles, making them less useful to general readers. -- Ssilvers (talk) 00:11, 21 July 2016 (UTC)
But you're still quoting your favorite essay like it's policy. You really should refrain from that and permanently ban "fancrufty" and all variants thereof, from your lexicon. If not, then perhaps work to make it an actual policy; instead of just behaving as though it already is. X4n6 (talk) 01:19, 21 July 2016 (UTC)
I have to agree with SchroCat on the essence of the matter. The exquisitely – and most welcomely – polite language of X4n6 fails, it seems to me, to disguise an implacable opposition to any dissenting view, a remarkable ability to bend the facts to suit an entrenched position, and a sedulous refusal to accept that FAs, having been through rigorous review by multiple editors, are a better template than B class articles that do not match the FA standard. -- Tim riley talk 20:36, 20 July 2016 (UTC):
As to your response above, while I find it regrettable, it is perhaps illustrative of why projects - and by inherent extension, their members - are so wisely and explicitly prohibited from enforcing their guidelines on articles, per WP:PROJ. All that barnstar-gifting between a small handful of editors, does make for some rather incestuous relationships, and to use your word, implacable positions. Not to mention, its own echo chamber. Mustn't bite the hands that feed you multiple barnstars, right? There is also some rather transparent hypocrisy in any indictment that accuses me of refusing to move from my entrenched position, when the same must be said of you. Especially when, it has been interesting to note, that throughout this colloquy, you've been consistently unable to even concede that what you're defending, represents a change in the past and current practices of this project - see capital "P." So this has been backwards from the beginning. Instead of trying to convince you, all along the onus has been on you and the members of your project (small "p"), to convince non-member editors like me, of the benefits of the changes you're advocating. Because, despite being well ensconced here in your faux fiefdom, you are the supplicants here, not me. And you have failed to make your case in this forum. At least to me. And likely to the editor who began this section. As I suspect you would likely fail before the larger membership as well. X4n6 (talk) 00:38, 21 July 2016 (UTC)