SickthingsUK: The Theatre

Random bits of information relating Alice and the theatre.

Alice's first experience on a professional theatrical stage was in October 1965 when The Spiders provided the music for a Phoenix production of 'Bye Bye Birdie' for a short residency.


'Billy Sunday'

In late October Billboard reported that Alice was considering starring as ex-baseball star and evangelist Billy Sunday, in a musical play and film of the same name to be produced by Bill Sargent. The script was written by Stephen and Elinor Karpf along with Sargent, and music/lyrics by Sonny James. Rehearsals were due to begin on January 4th 1977 with a proposed January 24th opening date in either New York (contract documents) or Los Angeles, where there was a full page advert for the show in 'Daily Variety' in October 11th 1976(page 24). The existing contract was for 10 weeks, with an option for an additional two weeks, with eight performances a week, out of which Alice MUST do seven. The film was to be directed by Steve Binder. There were also reports the play would be shown in "theater's around the country via closed circuit TV".

"He used to pick up chairs and use them to chase the devil around the stage. He was bigger than Billy Graham" said Alice in the press.

According to documents the idea seemed to be to open the play in New York, and then take it on tour around the Arena circuit (there is mention of a date in Chicago on February 24th, although it's unclear if Alice would still have been involved.), and make a film around the same time also staring Alice. However even before the play got off the ground the producers appeared to be receiving objections due to Alice's involvement. A seperate file with Alice's documentation is titled 'Alice Cooper Hate Mail'. One letter states "I am completely against the appearance of Billy Sunday travisty in Chicago on Fbruary 24th. I think it is horrible tha his nam is being used in connection with rock music. This man has been greatly used of god in the past".

In the end it never seems to have got off the ground, and if it did Alice wasn't part of it.


Hopi Elementary School

From around 1996 and for a few years afterwards (still?) Sheryl Cooper has been involved with the yearly Hopi Christmas plays, often with input from Alice. According to the Arizona Republic in 1996 the show was called 'Fractured Fairy Tales, written by Alice, and included Dash Cooper in the cast. Presumably other Cooper kids were in the plays while they were at the school, hence their parents involvement. Country musician Glen Campbell waas also reported to be involved for the same reason. Over the years the shows have become more and more successful, with the Coopers calling on industry friends to help with sets, lighting etc.


Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark

In October 2013 The New York Post reported that Alice was in discussions to join the cast of the Broadway show 'Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark' as The Green Goblin. It didn't happen, probably as it would have taken too much time out of his yearly schedule.

"According to the New York Post's Michael Riedel, rocker Alice Cooper is currently in negotiations to take on the role of supervillain the Green Goblin in Broadway's 'Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark'. The multi-million dollar production, which has been plagued with troubles including cast injuries, pans from critics, and lawsuits, since it began in previews, is hoping to keep ticket sales up during the slow winter months of January and February with the 'headline-grabbing' stunt.
Casting the 'The Godfather of Shock Rock' was the brain child of the show's producer, Michael Cohl, who Riedel describes as a "billionaire rock'n'roll presenter" who was brought into the $85 million dollar production by his friend Bono, who composed the show's music.
Hoping to eventually recoup the money investors have poured into the show, Cohl plans to franchise the show around the world and stage it in such venues as stadiums and arenas which hold thousands of people. He is also banking on the fact that a three-year run on the Broadway stage will attract larger audiences. Bringing in Alice Cooper would give the show better odds of perservering on the Great White Way. According to the report, Cooper will earn a healthy $150,000 per week for his efforts.'

"Alice was APPROACHED about doing this but that's as far as it's gotten at this point. I'm not saying it's a no, and I'm not saying it's a yes. I will say that he wasn't that interested in doing it because he already has so much else to focus on, and it would sit right in the middle of his much needed winter break, which would then turn his typical six to seven-ish months traveling schedule to a eight to nine month schedule, if you include the March shows with the Rock Meets Classics tour. That's a lot of away time, and I know he wasn't thrilled about the idea of doing it. BUT that's not to say he WON'T do it, but I didn't get the idea that he was going to bend over backwards to make it work. Who knows though."
(Personal Assistant Kyler Clarke, October 2013)