Dear Mr. Butler,
Thank you for responding to my email so quickly. My deadline is February 1st. There are a few questions I want to ask you.
How was the musical HAIR received by the general public?
A) Hair was very popular. It hit a cord with everyone. At one time we had 12 companies going. Reportedly 2/3 of the stage actors working were in Hair. It probably holds the record for the number of recorded hits from any musical and the countries where produced.
Did any political complications develop for you because of the musical? Were you personally against the United State’s involvement in Vietnam? Were there any protest songs during this tme that personally effected you? Why do you think HAIR was able to become so public and be translated into so many different languages? What really caught your eye about the play that made you want to produce it?
A) Considerable. At one time we had over 17 lawyers defending rights of free speech. It even went to the US Supreme Court. We won all cases.
It went so far there were two threats on my life.
I was listed twice on Nixon’s enemy list (2 different addresses).
I was against the Vietnam War. Even more so that I was a late convert from hawk to dove.
Hair played to people who were deeply concerned with the state of the nation. There were many who felt that we were on the verge of another Civil War. Hair gave them answers to important problems of the day. These concerns were world wide as the Vietnam War was as unpopular as the Iraq invasion.
As a political animal preparing to run for the US Senate I wanted to present Hair to my constituents to show what I felt about the Vietnam War. I ultimately decided to be its Producer rather than a US Senator.
Is there a possiblity for me to get a transcript of the original musical? Finally, does the archive have any photographs of the original cast, news articles, reviews, or magazine articles talking about HAIR and its controversial issues? Any information you could provide me would be extremely appreciated.
A) You might ask James Rado, the author and Galt MacDermot, the composer for their input.
The Hair Archives are the most extensive of any musical show in history. Nina Dayton is the Director.
Good Luck with your report,