Theatrical Dictionary: 11 O’Clock Number

Theatrical Dictionary: 11 O’Clock Number


♪ (upbeat doo-wop music) ♪ TDF’s Theatre Dictionary: 11 O’Clock Number ♪ Hey Nick. Don’t tell me you’ve
been checking out my centerfold, again. (chuckles) Actually Lucy, between shows I like to brush up on my theatre history. I was just reading about
the theatre term “11 O’Clock Number”. Ooh… Well I’ve done lots of numbers in my day, and 11 o’clock is one
of my favorite positions. Well in the theater, Lucy,
the 11 o’clock number is the big crowd-pleasing number
that happens at the end of the musical. It’s supposed to make the audience boogie,
and then send them home humming and happy. Well give me an example. ♪ Well the people all said, “Sit down,
sit down, you’re rockin’ the boat”… ♪ ♪ … people all said, “Sit down,
sit down, you’re rockin’ the boat”. ♪ ♪ Or the devil will drag you under, by
the sharp lapel of your checkered coat ♪ ♪ Sit down, sit down, sit down,
sit down, you’re rockin’ the boat! ♪ (laughs)
Well that was pretty good. -How about you?
-How ‘bout this? ♪ (scats vampily) ♪ ♪ For me! ♪ ♪ (scats vampily) ♪ ♪ For me! ♪ ♪ For me! ♪ ♪ For me! ♪ ♪ For… meeeeeee! ♪ Nice, Lucy! Okay, but there’s more to it. You know the terminology dates back
to the days when shows started at 8:30. So the finale would happen at… ta-da! 11 o’clock. My finest hour.
Both on stage and off. Well Nick, I know you’re happily married, but let’s see if there isn’t something we
can brush up on besides theatre history. (nervous laugh) ♪ (“And you live on Avenue Q… you live
on Avenue Q… you live on Avenue Q! ”) ♪

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