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Ragtime school edition

  • 1.  Ragtime school edition

    Posted 09-15-2019 07:59
    Considering Ragtime  and I have a few questions:

    1. What is the difference between the school edition and Ragtime 1 and Ragtime 2? 
    2. I do not use a live pit orchestra.  MTpit has tracks for Ragtime 1 - does anyone know if the school edition includes tracks?
    3. Anyone who has done the show - did you receive any push back from your community concerning the content i.e. racial slurs, language, etc.


    Thanks so much - love the advice from this group : )

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    Marla Blasko
    Director/Teacher Theatre Arts
    Long Reach High School
    Columbia, Maryland
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  • 2.  RE: Ragtime school edition

    Posted 09-17-2019 09:34
    Edited by Derek Pickens 09-18-2019 14:09
    According to the MTI site (you need to click on the blue "Version 1" to get the info):

    Version 1
    This is the version of text and score used in the original Broadway production. The Broadway show featured a lavish physical production, but it has been successfully reimagined and scaled down scenically for numerous stock and amateur productions. Version 1 supplies the original Broadway orchestrations, designed to be played by 28 musicians. (Depending on how many string players you hire, this version could work with as few as 22 musicians).

    Version 2
    This version of Ragtime was presented on tour and in London's West End. It features a revised text and score so that it can be done with minimal visuals and scenic effects, or even in a concert format, using no scenery whatsoever. It is designed to be played with as few as 19 players. (The full, Broadway-sized orchestration of Ragtime (Version 1) is also available for this version for concert presentations, if desired.)

    School Edition
    The original score has been transposed down slightly in some places to accommodate younger voices.
    The dialogue about Evelyn Nesbit has been cut from "Admiral Peary's March."
    A gesture of racism has been added between the First Officer of Admiral Peary's ship and Father during "Journey On."
    The Chorines and Sob Sisters in "Crime of the Century" have been replaced by the Jurors and the Press.
    Henry Ford is given a dialogued introduction similar to that of other characters at the top of the song, "Henry Ford."
    The end of the "Lawrence, Massachusetts," scene, in which Tateh gets hit in the head and stumbles toward the train, has been cut.
    The version of "He Wanted to Say" that is included in the original script as an alternate, is used as the preferred version here.
    The short scene at the end of "Look What You've Done (Part 3)," in which the characters shout what will be lost if the library is destroyed, has been cut.
    Throughout the script, a number of additional stage directions and/or notes have been added to guide the creative team.


    As far as accompaniment software, it seems as if only Version 1 has that. The school edition is completely fully orchestrated, HOWEVER they do have Orchestra - which is usually used to enhance a pit if you can't do the full orchestration, a sort of hybrid live and recorded. If in a pinch, you could use it to play all instruments, however you still need someone to run the software. It has to be connected to a keyboard (it used to come with one) and someone has to tap to set tempo, to exit vamps, and a few other things. You would need someone very familiar with the score and with music skill to run it, it is not the simplest thing.

    None of the scripts have cut the slurs, which means it may take raising awareness to your community what the show is about and why it is there and necessary. There's no way to eliminate it as it's so integral to the story. If you don't think your community or admin can get behind that, you may need to rethink the show as a choice.

    Hope this all helps!

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    Derek T. Pickens
    Theatre Teacher
    Charleston County School of the Arts
    North Charleston, SC
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