Généralités: Histoire, thèmes et particularités


Barnum raconte l'histoire du Prince of Humbug, Phineas Taylor Barnum. Malgré les objections de sa femme, Charity, Barnum essaie de créer un spectacle dans lequel les attractions principales sont monstres de société. On y retrouve la plus vieille femme en vie, Joice Heth, le plus petit homme du monde, Tom Thumb, et encore mieux, un chanteur d'opéra suédois glamour, Jenny Lind. Finalement, Barnum consent à abandonner le spectacle et commencer une vie normale pour apaiser Charity. A la fin, après que la mort de Charity, Barnum revient dans le monde du cirque, très à la mode, en formant une association avec James A. Baily. Alors, les deux hommes créent 'The Greatest Show on Earth'.

Synopsis complet


Historique du musical

Génèse du musical

Original Broadway Production)
The original production opened at the St. James Theatre on Broadway, on April 30, 1980 and closed on May 16, 1982 after 854 performances and 26 previews. It was directed and choreographed by Joe Layton, with scenic design by David Mitchell, costume design by Theoni V. Aldredge, and lighting design by Craig Miller. The musical starred Jim Dale as P.T. Barnum, Glenn Close as Charity Barnum, Marianne Tatum as Jenny Lind, Terri White as Joice Heth, and Terrence Mann as Chester Lyman.

Original London Production
The show made its West End debut on June 11, 1981 at the London Palladium, where it ran for 655 performances. The London cast included Michael Crawford as P.T. Barnum, Deborah Grant as Charity Barnum and Sarah Payne as Jenny Lind. Crawford reprised his role opposite Eileen Battye in a UK Tour of the show which ran between 1984 and 1986, stopping off at various venues including the Manchester Opera House and Victoria Palace Theatre. The tour was recorded for television and broadcast by the BBC in 1986. It was later released on VHS and DVD.

Other productions
International productions were staged in Australia (1982) starring Reg Livermore, Madrid (1984) starring Emilio Aragón, Florida (2008) starring Brad Oscar.

In 2008, Cameron Mackintosh had reportedly voiced interest in producing a London or Broadway revival of Barnum starring either John Barrowman or Neil Patrick Harris.



Liste des chansons

Acte I
"Overture Chase"
"There Is a Sucker Born Ev'ry Minute"--Barnum
"Humble Beginnings Chase"
"Thank God I'm Old"--Joice Heth and Tambourine Players
"The Colors of My Life Part I"--Barnum and Charity
"The Colors of My Life Part II"
"One Brick at a Time"--Charity, Barnum, and Bricklayers
"Museum Song"--Barnum
"Female of the Species Chase"
"I Like Your Style"--Barnum and Charity
"Bigger Isn't Better"--Tom Thumb
"Love Makes Such Fools of Us All"--Jenny Lind
"Midway Chase"
"Out There"--Barnum

Acte II
"Come Follow the Band"--Potomac Marching Band and Washingtonians
"Black and White"--Charity, Choir, Blues Singer, Barnum and Citizens of Bridgeport
"The Colors of My Life (Reprise)"--Barnum and Charity
"The Prince of Humbug"--Barnum
"Join the Circus"--Bailey, Circus Performers and Barnum
"Finale Chase"
"The Final Event: There Is A Sucker Born Ev'ry Minute (Reprise)"

Liste des rôles

Phineas Taylor Barnum - The Prince of Humbug
Chairy Barnum - His wife
Joice Heth oldest woman alive
Tom Thumb - Smallest man in the world
Julius Goldschmidt - Jenny Lind's manager
Jenny Lind - Swedish soprano
Blues Singer - A black woman (same as Joice Heth)
James A Bailey - Small circus owner
Ringmaster - Circus performer (Same as James A Bailey)
Chester Lyman - Joice Heth's manager
Amos Scudder - Owner of the American Museum
Sherwood Stratton - Tom Thumb's father
Mrs Sherwood Stratton - Tom Thumb's mother
Wilton - Barnum's assistant on the Jenny Lind tour
Edgar Templeton - Political party boss
Humbert Morrisey - Political party boss

Plus a host of extras in a huge selection of parts
Tumbers, jugglers, clowns aerialists, acrobats, gymnasts, bricklayers, passersby, museum patrons, strongmen, beefeaters, the "mob" in general, the Bridgeport Pageant Choir and bands of every size, shape and description

Textes disponibles on-line

Aucun livret ou texte de chanson disponibles pour le moment

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Versions du musical

Versions majeures de Barnum

Mais aussi, quelques versions régionales ou mineures, ... de Barnum


Multimedia on-line

Vidéos on-line

 Pas encore de video disponible pour ce spectacle


Principaux CD du musical

1) 1980-04-Original Broadway Cast

2) 1981-03-French Cast

3) 1981-06-Original London Cast

4) 1988-09-Dutch Cast

Liste détaillée des principaux CD


Captations du musical