'Twas a Year Full of New Line 2017

'Twas a year full of New Line -- across our small stage
Trod moral Neanderthals, Grrrl Power rage,
A charming misogynist, five show tune queens;
And the palpable thrill that you can't get from screens --
The real human moments, the joy and the strife,
The brutal satire that cuts like a knife.
It's the magic of theatre, Mirror to Life.

Finding the sunshine when life is most bleak
Was the point of the musical Zorba (the Greek).
A philosopher rogue on a hedonist's quest,
His moral authority, suspect at best.
But he knows we must celebrate man's inner boy,
All his stumbles toward love, and the transparent ploy;
For a life lived out loud, firmly rooted in joy.

The musical horror, Sweet Smell of Success,
Spun its characters round like a dark game of chess,
Tearing down, ripping open, flayed bare to reveal
All the darkest of impulses, as they congeal;
So nasty and selfish, so cruel and destructive,
And poetic justice? No, that's too reductive.
But Jesus, the Dark Side is awfully seductive...

And then Out on Broadway, (sub-head: "The Third Coming"),
Some humor, much pride, and a little nose-thumbing;
With songs that were written for couples just straight,
Reimagined for all, so that all can relate.
These proud, out, gay men at the height of their powers
Know musicals still are as gay as pink flowers,
So all we boys did was take back what is ours...

And then we met Lizzie, and rock goddess justice,
The women around her, her story (just trust us!),
The details of which are exquisitely sketchy,
But all of her punk-emo songs fuckin' catchy!
Fierce and aggressive, this feminist wail
At a culture too sexist and power too male,
A rousing revenge and empowerment tale.

I checked off more shows from my List of the Bucket;
They didn't sell great, but they're awesome, so fuck it.
The critics embraced them, our audience too;
I remain crazy proud of the work we all do.
So we'll finish the holidays, finish the feasts,
But we're not quite done yet with villains and beasts -- 
Now it's on to the zombies, the Smart Set, and yeasts...!

Happy Holidays! Long Live the Musical!

P.S. If you're a glutton for punishment, here are my year-end poems from 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016.