Hairspray is a musical with music by Mark Shaiman, lyrics by Scott Wittman and Shaiman, and the book by Mark O'Donnel and Thomas Meeham. Based off the Hairspray (1988 film) by John Walters, the songs include 1960s-style dance music and "downtown" rhythm and blues. In 1962 Baltimore, Maryland, Tracy Turnblad's dream is to dance on The Corny Collins Show, based off the real-life Buddy Dean show. When Tracy wins the role on the show, she becomes a overnight celebrity, and meets a colorful array of unique characters. Then she launches a campaign to integrate the show and change history. Hairspray is known to be a social commentary on injustices of parts on the American society.
The musical's original Broadway production opened on August 15, 2002.
In 2003 it won eight Tony Awards out of 13 nominations. It ran over 2,500 performances and closed on January 4, 2009. Hairspray has also had some national tours, a London West End production, and numerous foreign productions and was adapted as a 2007 musical film. The London production was nominated for a record-setting eleven Lance Oliver Awards, winning for Best New Musical and in three other categories.
According to interviews included as an extra feature on the 2007 film's DVD release, theatre producer Margo Lion first conceived of Hairspray as a stage musical in 1988 after seeing a television broadcast of the original film. "I was home looking at a lot of movies, and one of those movies were Hairspray." The story was about a unlikely heroine Tracy Turnblad who gets to dance on her local dance show and break down their segregation rules. She contacted John Lonowski, who gave her his blessing, then acquired rights from New Line Cinema. Lion then contacted Andrew Amerson, who only was interested in the project only if his partner Scott Wittman could participate, and Lion agreed. The two submitted three songs-one if which, Good Morning Baltimore, eventually became the shows opening number. Based on there initial work, Lion had felt confident that she had hired the right team.
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