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In an age where live television events are a network's best shot at big ratings and lots of ad-money, live televised musicals can be a hot commodity. NBC has been airing them for a while now, and will continue to do so as it just announced the next production it will broadcast to audiences in spring 2019. NBC will stick with the rock musical theme of its most recent Jesus Christ Superstar Live In Concert and attempt to wow audiences with a production of Hair Live!.
Hair Live! will recount the tale of hippies and the Vietnam war as the main character Claude struggles with his decision to resist the draft with his hippie friends or give into his parents' pressure and join the war effort. The Broadway production was highly controversial at the time, but found success and lived on beyond its original opening on Broadway in April 1968. Since then, the musical has been performed worldwide, had three number one singles, and a feature-length film. Suffice to say, NBC knew what it was doing snagging this musical up, as while the 60s have come and gone, this musical definitely still has its fans.
Hair Live! will be executive produced by Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, who have produced NBC's live musicals since the network aired the live musical for The Sound Of Music Live! back in 2013. Zadan and Meron doted on Hair in a joint statement and said the musical's most recent Broadway revival is evidence of its timelessness. NBC chairman Robert Greenblatt seemed to agree with the producers as he added the show's theme of young people protesting and fighting for what they believe in is just as relevant as it is today as it was back then.
NBC's decision to air Hair Live! is interesting, as the show caused a fair deal of controversy in its initial runs for some of its scenes. Audiences likely won't have the same problems audiences of the past did, although it will be interesting to see how NBC decides to tackle the big nude scene the production first gained notoriety for. The obvious answer seems to be that the Peacock Network won't air it, or the production will do a censored version of the scene. That said, should NBC decide to air some fully naked bodies in primetime as some sort of statement, that'd certainly have the potential to be the most exciting musical production the network has aired to date!
As mentioned, NBC will air Hair Live! sometime in spring of 2019. While musical fans will have to wait for that, they won't be bored as there will be plenty of great television to catch in the meantime. Visit our summer premiere guide to see a list of all shows new and premiering in the coming months, as well as where and when to watch them.