Theater: Getting All Fired Up over Nothing CARRIE

Music by Michael Gore; Lyrics by Dean Pitchford Book by Lawrence D. Cohen

When Terry Hands took over from Trevor Nunn as sole artistic director of Britain's Royal Shakespeare Company in 1987, he had a daunting artistic legacy to equal. But, according to associates, Hands may have yearned just as much to emulate Nunn's commercial success -- and income -- as director of the musicals Cats, Les Miserables and Starlight Express. Hands committed himself to staging a most unorthodox venture for the R.S.C.: a $7 million musical adaptation of Stephen King's 1974 horror novel Carrie. In meetings, colleagues say, Hands was apt to recite costs and potential box-office income at various Broadway houses.


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