The Fantasticks is a 1960 musical that tells a story about two fathers who trick their children into falling in love by pretending to feud.
The show’s original off-Broadway production ran for a total of 42 years and 17,162 performances, making it the world’s longest-running musical. Many productions followed, as well as television and film versions. The Fantasticks has become a staple of regional, community, and high school productions, with approximately 250 new productions each year. The show re-opened off-Broadway in 2006.
This clip from 1982 features Jerry Orbach (1935-2004), who may be best known to younger viewers as Detective Lennie Briscoe on Law & Order, but Orbach was a true leading man of Broadway, appearing in The Fantasticks, Chicago, and 42nd Street. He was nominated for multiple Tony Awards, and won for his performance in Promises, Promises.
Here he is on television, introduced by Tony Award winner Tom Bosley (Fiorello!):
BONUS! You simply must watch this matchless performance of Elaine Stritch singing “I’m Still Here” from the Stephen Sondheim musical Follies. This performance was at the 2010 Birthday Celebration for Sondheim. There was only one Elaine Stritch.