Yesterday I had the chance to experience what might be called a childhood dream: seeing a Muppet live. Miss Piggy was in Toronto to promote Muppets Most Wanted and Disney graciously invited me to the press conference at the posh Shangri-La hotel (a fitting venue for a superstar like Piggy, who let everyone know that she “fixed” some of Celine Dion’s high notes in the film).
Running only ten minutes, it was far too short, but the event reminded me why a live Muppet musical like the one Disney has been exploring is such a superb idea.
It’s true what they say, even adults tend to forget that there’s a puppeteer under the table. (My only gripe was that they had Miss Piggy emerge from below, instead of having her already seated when everyone was let into the room.) You know that feeling when you see a celebrity in person after years of seeing them in pictures? I got that.
Just watching Miss Piggy answering questions from the interviewer (the city’s best film critic, Richard Crouse) and the assembled press was entertaining enough. Everyone in the room looked like they’d pay to see it. Now imagine a Broadway musical with the entire Muppets cast performing. Kermit on a log singing “Rainbow Connection”; Gonzo flying across the stage.
There’s no doubt, a musical starring The Muppets would be an enormous hit, appealing to every age group and demographic. It would bring in millions in ticket sales, especially if the production could be replicated around the globe. Disney Theatrical, make it happen.