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MANKA BROS. STUDIOS
PAST SHOWS
BEHIND THE PROSCENIUM

2000-2016

Rampage of the Stegosaur (2016) - Musical based on the 2006 Manka Bros. film about love-crossed Velociraptors on the run from the rampaging Stegosaurs.

That's Gatsby! (2016) - Musical based on the noval by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Ford Trucks Presents Hedda Gabler (2015) - Production of Henrik Ibsen's masterpiece presented by Ford Trucks.

Suck My Kiss (2014) - Red Hot Chili Peppers were finally coerced into penning a Broadway Musical. [And said they would never do it again after this epic flop.]

Gulag: A New Musical (2013) - Musical based on "The Gulag Archipelago" trilogy by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and starring Joey Levitch.

Buried Alive: A Musical (2004) - Experimental musical following five characters who were recently buried alive.

Shakespeare's The Odd Couple (2002) - Neil Simon's play set in Elizabethan times. [Show was closed immediately by Neil Simon after the first preview.]

The Spirit Of Music (2000) - Progressive musical version of Nietzche's "The Birth Of Tragedy," featuring a group of young Goth friends who discuss the dichotomy between Dionysian and Apollonian tragedy while falling madly in love.

 

1990-1999

Cathy (1993) - Off-Broadway musical based on the comic strip character. [Closed after the first table read through due to rights clearance issues.]

Sensible Shoes (1992) - Innovative all-tap production featuring dancers in comfy loafers.

Viet-Mom (1991) - Heartbreaking epic love story musical set during the Vietnam War.

 

1980-1989

The Potato Eaters (1989) - Musical based on the characters from Van Gogh's painting "The Potato Eaters."

Slaughterhouse Live! (1986) - Musical version of Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse Five."

Hey Kids! Touch My Body (1985) - Originally a touring school assembly show educating youngsters about the onset of puberty. It was so popular that Manka Bros. brought it to Broadway to mild/zero success.

All Dolled Up (1983) - The incredibly versatile Joey Levitch starred as wax sculptor Madame Tussaud (aging from 15 to 89) in this groundbreaking musical. [It closed after one triumphant performance that Broadway is still talking about today.]

 

1970-1979

Dog Patch '79 (1979) - Live theme park show produced by Manka Bros. at the Dog Patch Theme Park in the Ozark Mountains.

The Duchess Of Malfi (1979) - Famous staging of the John Webster play starring puppets and animals. It was a triumph at the Old Vic in London first and then the Palace Theatre in New York.

Ken & Rhonda's First Apartment (1978) - Off-Broadway musical about the trials and tribulations of a couple in their early 20s after they get their first apartment.

Balls (1975) - Bertolt Brecht's play starred Joey Levitch in his first appearance on Broadway in 40 years.

Oh, Sweet Mama Child (1973) - This homage to southern black culture featuring a cast of white and Asian people in blackface was not allowed to open. [Harry Manka took out full page ads in the trades to explain that the show was actually an attack against racism by showing it on stage in its most awful form.]

 

1960-1969

The Smells, The Sounds (1968) - Bill Fosse (cousin of Bob Fosse) choreographed this funktastic musical set amongst the homeless living in a Manhattan alleyway.

'Tis Pity She's A Whore (1967) - A Manka Playhouse presentation-live television event. [The show was a disaster as several of the actors got food poisoning during the performance.]

Scream! (or Munch Ado About Nothing) (1966) - Musical retelling of the life of Edvard Munch.

Crazy Beat (1964) - Musical about the Beat Generation. [Closed in Connecticut.]

I Miss Bora Bora (1961) - Broadway Manka's ambitious 7-hour adaptation of James Michener's "Hawaii" spanned centuries, featured a cast of 250 and was set in Thailand.

 

1950-1950

Owl Creek (1959) - Musical drama based on "An Occurrence At Owl Creek Bridge" by Ambrose Bierce.

Pills Are Poppin' (1950) - A dreary hospital cancer ward gets a facelift and a jolt of pizzazz when new administrator Donald O'Connor takes over. Can he stay upbeat even when HE gets cancer? [Made into the 1951 film "Cancer Dancer."]

 

1940-1949

Goin' To Town (1944) - World War II musical about a group of flyboys goin' to town. [Featured an actual World War II combat airplane landing on stage.]

Muckrakers (1942) - The compelling story of journalist John Spargo and his undying efforts to change child labor laws in the early 20th century. [Ironically, the show was shut down after law-enforcement discovered the children in the cast had been forced to work 14 hours a day.]

 

1930-1939

Society Gals (1939) - Society gals sing about going to cocktail parties and other functions with a sophisticated bunch of playboy playwrights, politicians and movie stars.

Tit For Tat (1937) - The Markham Sisters starred in this lavish musical about idential twin sisters who vie to achieve the finest female physique, with tragic results.

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