A to Z Musicals ~ ♬ “F” is for THE FANTASTICKS


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 FantasticksChicago, 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.


12 thoughts on “A to Z Musicals ~ ♬ “F” is for THE FANTASTICKS

  1. “Try to Remamber” is one of my all time favorite songs. I saw the “Fantasticks” in Corning’s summer theater when I was woking at a summer camp in Watkins Glen, NY. The camp staff was all college students and we went to see this on a night off. I can’t hear this song without remembering those wonderful summer days.


  2. I was a little sleepy this morning when I first read this and missed something. “Hey” I said…that kind of looks like Tom Bosley………Tony Award winning Tom that is. So different from Happy Days……..very interesting M!


    1. You know, Hilary, I so love the song “Try to Remember” that I knew right away I’d feature The Fantasticks as my ‘F’ post. But oh, when I watched Elaine Stritch perform…….goosebumps. Thanks for posting! 💙


    1. It was so hard to choose between these two, Denise – I had to include both. I love that both Jerry Orbach and Tom Bosley found fame on television in their later years. But both were stage stars first. And oh, Elaine Stritch. I could watch that clip several times a day and still get goosebumps. Thank you for posting!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve never seen either musical you mentioned. But I was a fan of Jerry and Elaine. I regret not going to see her in her later years when she performed. She was a local treasure, though she was not overly happy about moving back to this area.


    1. Denise, I’m not familiar with THE FANTASTICKS in its entirety, only with the songs (“Try to Remember” and “Soon It’s Gonna Rain”). Its longevity gave me a reason to feature it today. And Elaine Stritch – yes, your hometown girl. I recently watched a documentary of her on Netflix – filmed in her last years. Beautiful.


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