We are an independent show guide. Resale ticket prices may be above face value.

The Story of Funny Girl

Author KittyKitty, February 27th, 2024

Discover the story behind the musical Funny Girl - now dazzling on tour!

This delectable revival of Isobel Lennart and June Styne's 1964 musical Funny Girl originated on Broadway in 2022 and is now stunning audiences across the country. Telling the extraordinary tale of Fanny Brice, one of the most famous performers of the 1920s and 30s, the musical theatre classic conjures up nostalgia and emotion while making you laugh out loud as it channels Brice's trademark wit and heartwarming passion.

Who was Fanny Brice?

Born Fania Borach in Manhattan in 1891, Fanny Brice was not a 'typical beauty' of the time, yet after dropping out of school to work at a burlesque revue and later joining Ziegfeld's Follies in 1910, her charm and humor saw her rise to headline the show, launching her to success in venues across the country.

The Ziegfeld Follies

A decadent fusion of vaudeville-style revue, music hall, and cabaret that took its inspiration from the Parisian Folies Bergere, the Ziegfried Follies were the creation of theatre impresario Florenz Ziegfeld Jr., who set up his version in New York in 1907. An elaborate spectacular full of glittering costumes, lavish scenery and a cast of 'Ziegfeld's Girls' these displays were more than just a chance for titillation, between the 'tableaux vivants' (the 'living pictures' the women created) there were performances of song, dance, drama and comedy.

The Musical

Originally pitched as a film by Brice's son-in-law Ray Stark, the project evolved into a musical after actress and Fanny fan Mary Martin thought Isobel Lennart's script would make a great stage show. After adding June Styne and Bob Merrill to create music and lyrics, they looked for actresses to play Fanny, considering Mary Martin, Ann Bancroft, and Eydie Gorme before finally settling on the rising star, Barbara Streisand. It took a few more years, but finally, Funny Girl premiered on March 26, 1964, at the Winter Garden Theatre, where it ran for 1,348 performances. Transferring to London's West End, Sydney Australia, and mounting a North American tour, the show then made it to the screen in 1968, with Streisand reprising her role in an Oscar-winning performance, cementing both her and Fanny's legacies in popular culture.

Famous Fannys

While Barbara was the original Fanny on Stage and screen, the role of Fanny remains a highly sought-after job. In 2016, the show was revived in London, with West End star Sheridan Smith. When this 2022 Broadway revival was announced, the competition was fierce, but ultimately we were blessed by both Bernie Fieldstien and Lea Michele lighting up the stage as the iconic performers. The tour sees newcomer Katerina McCrimmon step into Brice's shoes, in a breakthrough performance.

Reviews for McCrimmon as Fanny on tour

"You'll not often hear a voice as amazing as hers; she is most definitely a young actress who'll go places -- not only can she sing, her performance IS pure musical theater." - Edge Media Network (Providence RI)

"McCrimmon shows such power and control as a vocalist, such depth and consistency as a character actor and such a mesmerizing stage presence that hundreds sat enthralled with her performance from beginning to end." - The Providence Journal (Providence RI)

"Katerina McCrimmon (as Fanny Brice) has talent to burn. She's staggeringly charismatic. She's funny, yes. Given the title, she'd better be. But she's achingly human, too. She sang so well that, more than once, I found myself shivering." The Rapidan (Grand Rapids MI)

"Katerina McCrimmon is a phenomenal Fanny - quirky, adorable, quick, clever, ambitious, and utterly romantic all at once. She's an exquisite comedienne with an astounding vocal range and ability: she makes you laugh out loud with her timing and delivery of lines but also gives you goosebumps." - Revue (West Michigan)

Don't miss Funny Girl when it comes to town on tour this year!

NEWS, TICKETS, THEATRE & MORE

"Broadway and show news straight to your inbox!"

MORE from hq

A Brief History Of Queer Theatre

A Brief History Of Queer Theatre

Kevin, July 16th, 2024
Queer theatre has always had a rebellious nature, and isn't afraid to show its true colours. It's sparked important conversations during times when openly discussing LGBTQ+ issues was taboo or illegal, throughout history......
Read more
Test Your Knowledge: Broadway Edition!

Test Your Knowledge: Broadway Edition!

Saadiqah, June 19th, 2024
Who doesn't love a word search? A challenge sure to engage your brain; we've designed a custom word to test your Broadway musical knowledge. Can you find them all? Good luck!...
Read more
The Kings of Comedy: Steve Martin and Martin Short

The Kings of Comedy: Steve Martin and Martin Short

Kevin, June 10th, 2024
It's rare for two comedy legends to find a perfect counterpart in each other, but Grammy Award winner Steve Martin and Tony Award winner Martin Short have done so with ease, creating a duo that continues to tickle audiences decades later....
Read more
Try Our Lion King Quiz!

Try Our Lion King Quiz!

Daniel, June 4th, 2024
Do you think you know your Lion King? Fan of the movie and the musical? Test your knowledge with our quick interactive Lion King Quiz!Still going strong after two incredible decades, this Tony Award-winning extravaganza will delight......
Read more
Test Your Skills: Mamma Mia! Word Search

Test Your Skills: Mamma Mia! Word Search

Kevin, May 17th, 2024
You can dance, you can jive and you can certainly complete this exciting Mamma Mia! word search....
Read more
Wicked Is The Tenth Longest-Running West End Show

Wicked Is The Tenth Longest-Running West End Show

Kevin, April 29th, 2024
Popular, Wicked is popular! On 24 April, the modern classic (which continues its open-ended run at the Apollo Victoria Theatre) played its 6762nd performance overtaking No Sex Please, We're British, which ran from June 1971......
Read more
Elphabas Over The Years - Who's Your Favorite?

Elphabas Over The Years - Who's Your Favorite?

Kevin, February 27th, 2024
No one, in all of Oz, could ever have predicted that so many talented women would play Elphaba! From the OG Idina Menzel to the latest witch in school, Cynthia Erivo, over 46 actors have embodied the emerald-green queen....
Read more
BroadwayMusicalMothers DayClassic