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Welcome to the Raggedy Ann Revival Effort homepage!
The Raggedy Ann Revival Effort (or R.A.R.E.) is an online volunteer effort dedicated to preserving, archiving, and eventually reviving the 1986 Broadway musical Raggedy Ann.
Our goal is to restore and revive the show by recovering and cleaning up the script, re-creating missing orchestrations for the music, and recovering any lost content we can find, so that hopefully we may one day put on the Raggedy Ann musical ourselves! We started in Feburary of 2021 and operate mainly on discord, with a central hub of organizers who archive and support the work done by the larger community.
Come explore our archives, learn a little about the show, and join us if you like!
| Background |
The Raggedy Ann musical is known as Raggedy Ann in it's 1984 & Broadway productions, and Rag Dolly in the 1985 production and Moscow tour. The book was written by William Gibson (of The Miracle Worker) and the music composed by Joe Raposo (of Sesame St. and The Muppet Show). The production came into being when producer Patricia Snyder saw the 1977 animated Raggedy Ann & Andy: A Musical Adventure and asked the movie's composer, none other than Joe Raposo, to join her in creating a new musical. Gibson was inspired by the legend of Raggedy Ann's origins - in which Johnny Gruelle created the character to cheer up his sick and dying daughter, Marcella - to write a show that dealt with grief, death, and how stories can bring us hope and comfort when life is difficult to face.
In 1984, the show's workshops opened to mixed reviews, critics saw promise in the concept but many parents complained of the darker themes they were not expecting out of such a child-friendly property. The show went on, however, and the next year it was chosen to play a important role in a cultural exchange between the Empire State Institute for the Performing Arts and Moscow's Musical Theater for Children. The cast spent New Years Eve, 1985, on a plane to the USSR, where they would spend the coming weeks performing for the delighted children and political leaders of Moscow.
They returned home with high spirits following the incredibly positive reception. The show started on the tracks to Broadway with a tryout at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. from August 23 to September 21, 1986, now with half the original cast replaced. In October, the show moved to the Nederlander Theater on Broadway for previews. Under the harsh lights and even harsher critics of Broadway, the charming little oddity was clearly out of place. Raggedy Ann ultimately raised the curtains for opening night on October 15th... and promptly lowered them again three days later. With no cast album, no licensing, and very little fanfare, the show faded into obscurity.
| News |
Recent goings-on in the Raggedy Ann world
Nothing to report at the moment! But we will be updating this when we get the chance