US: ‘Wicked’ composer attacks school that cancelled Spamalot over same-sex wedding

Nick Duffy September 12, 2014
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Wicked composer Stephen Schwartz has signed a letter condemning a school that cancelled a production of Spamalot, because it contains a same-sex wedding.

Williamsport High School in Pennsylvania shelved plans to hold a production of the Monty Python stage play, over concerns about a same-sex wedding scene.

The marriage in Monty Python’s Spamalot takes place at the end of the production, when Lancelot is outed in a large disco number after rescuing an effeminate prince.

Schwartz has signed a letter to the school from the Dramatists Guild of America, of which he is currently president.

He wrote: “You have cancelled the production of a popular, established, award-winning and widely-produced theatrical work because of your expressed belief that homosexual themes are somehow at odds with your community’s values and put students in a ‘tough spot’.

“It appears that you wish to squander an opportunity for education by not only excluding so-called ‘homosexual themes’ from community discussion, but also by distinguishing between homophobia and discrimination against a particular gender, race, ethnicity or nationality.

“Would you cancel a school production of The Diary of Anne Frank because of concern over the sensitivities of Holocaust deniers and those with anti-Semitic views in your community? That seems unlikely. Why then are you so solicitous of homophobia?

“If your students are either unable to present the show this year or are forced to produce it elsewhere instead, this would constitute a lost opportunity for your institution.

“If there is anything we can do to help facilitate the reinstatement of the production, please let us know.”

More: composer, Employment, Gay, gay wedding, homophobic, Monty Python, Same-sex, Stephen Schwartz, US, wedding, Wicked

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