You Won’t Succeed on Broadway if You Don’t Have Any Jews is a pithy, smart, hugely enjoyable satirical number from the Monty Python musical Spamalot. This show is none of those things, and using that song’s title as a peg on which to hang a trite and tiresome compilation of Broadway’s greatest show tunes delivered with such banality and archness is little short of criminal deception.
We owe the phrase “you won’t succeed on Broadway if you don’t have any Jews” to Spamalot – so it only officially entered the theatrical lexicon circa 2005 when the Monty Python musical opened on Broadway (and I first heard it live a year later, when it had its West End premiere at the Palace […]
‘You won’t succeed on Broadway if you don’t have any Jews.’ This quote from the Monty Python musical Spamalot has inspired a new show, dedicated to celebrating the contribution of Jewish people to musical theatre over the last century. From Stephen Sondheim to Irving Berlin, Jule Styne to Burt Bacharach, I certainly had no idea so many great names in the industry came from a Jewish background. (Although if I’m honest, I can’t say I’d ever actually thought about it.)