Well, we got trouble, my friends! Right here in River City! Or we will on NBC in 2015. The Peacock isn't wasting any time getting started on their next live musical production to follow the planned Peter Pan production, that's due to broadcast later this year. The Music Man will be the third live musical production to air on NBC, as the network has lined it up for next year.
Last December, when NBC was planning their next live musical production, after the ratings success that was The Sound of Music, word was they were looking for something that was family-friendly with a lot of familiar songs. The Peacock settled on Peter Pan, with a plan to get it on the air in early December of this year (2014). We won't be forced to guess what's next after that, as Deadline reports that NBC announced plans for a live production of The Music Man. Popular songs from the musical are "Ya Got Trouble" and "Seventy-Six Trombones."
Meredith Willson's beloved musical The Music Man made its Broadway debut in 1957, with Robert Preston playing Professor Harold Hill, a con man posing as a traveling salesman peddling the promise of a marching band. His game was to skip town once the instruments and uniforms arrived. Challenged with conning the hard-to-scam Iowan residents of River City, Hill decides to give Iowa a try, but he isn't prepared for just how affected he'll be by the residents of this little town.
The musical was adapted for a film in 1962. Robert Preston reprised his role as Harold Hill, while Shirley Jones (who was pregnant at the time, though you'd never guess to look at her) played Marian, the stuck-up River City librarian who catches Hill's eye. Buddy Hackett played Marcellus Washburn, a former associate of Hill's, who settled down in River City and is the only person who knows what Hill's actually up to.
Part of Hill's scheme is to give the town a reason to think they need a boys band. When he discovers River City just got a new pool table in the billiard hall, he gets everyone's feathers ruffled. Here's the "Ya Got Trouble" scene from the film:
In terms of family-friendliness and mainstream appeal, The Music Man is a perfect production choice for NBC. The story was technically already given the TV treatment back in 2003, with Matthew Broderick and Kristin Chenoweth playing the starring roles. So it's been done for TV before, but NBC's version is a live production, and it's been more than a decade since ABC aired their version.
Deadline says the project is in the casting stages, so we hopefully won't have to wait long to hear who's playing Harold Hill, Marian and the rest of the cast.