MUSIC THEATRE INTERNATIONAL (MTI)

MUSIC THEATRE INTERNATIONAL (MTI) was founded in 1952 by the famous multi-awarded American composer-lyricist Frank Loesser (1910-1969), whose shows include GUYS AND DOLLS, THE MOST HAPPY FELLA, HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT REALLY TRYING, WHERE’S CHARLEY? and the prolific Broadway Orchestrator Don Walker (1907-1989) (some of his hits: CAROUSEL, FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, CABARET). It soon evolved to one of the world’s leading theatrical licensing Agencies, granting to professional and amateur theatre groups the license to perform on stage a musical belonging to their continuously increasing musical theatre catalogue (with over 250 titles), ranging from the latest hits in Broadway or West-End or youth musicals born in regional theatres to all-times classics. New noteworthy works reach their audiences and become known, while the great well-established works continue to thrive and cultivate new generations. To achieve this goal, MTI is in direct collaboration with the authors of the shows (composers, lyricists, book writers) and provides official scripts, music materials for smaller and larger Orchestras, as well as a variety of resources to theatre producers not only in USA but also in more than 60 countries worldwide.  

MTIS’ catalogue includes the shows: ANNIE, BILLY ELLIOT, ELF, FAME, FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, THE FULL MONTY, GRAND HOTEL, GUYS AND DOLLS, HAIRSPRAY, INTO THE WOODS, JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH, JEKYLL AND HIDE, KINKY BOOTS, LEGALLY BLONDE, MAMMA MIA!, MISS SAIGON, NEXT TO NORMAL, PASSION, PETER AND THE STARCATHCHER, THE PRODUCERS, SHREK, SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN, TICK, TICK … BOOM, WEST SIDE STORY, WOMEN ON THE VERGE OF A NERVOUS BREAKDOWN, as well as the DISNEY Musicals, including AIDA, ALADDIN, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL, THE LITTLE MERMAID, MARY POPPINS, MY SON PINOCCHIO, TARZAN, etc.

Supporting that theatre has not just an entertaining but a primary educative role, MTI has been concerned to raise the next generation of artists and audiences with specific initiatives. For this reason, since 1994 it has created the MTI Broadway Junior Collections, JR. and KIDS, to be performed by middle school and elementary school students, respectively. These are condensed (up to 60 minutes and 30 minutes in each case) author-approved versions of the most beloved musicals, such as: ANNIE, GUYS AND DOLLS, DISNEY’S: ALADDIN, ALICE IN WONDERLAND, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, etc. With the aid of MTI ShowKit, a very useful interdisciplinary teaching tool, the success of the production is guaranteed. MTI further offers the MTI School Editions, i.e. author-approved adaptations of shows to be performed by high-school students, such as: the huge success LES MISERABLES (which was MTI’s first school edition released in 2002), AIDA, RENT, MIS SAIGON, etc. Another special offering is the Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA), comprising a big variety of musicals, under 90 minutes and of less cast requirements, to be performed by adults to children. 

MTI has also developed the MTI Concert Library, making available for concert performances both concert/symphonic arrangements of selected most popular theatre music and full scores of Broadway musicals. MTI is thus renting the music material of a wide range of contemporary great composers’ songs (symphonic, pop, traditional), in response to the increasing demand of adults and children for concerts of popular theatre music.     

And some further interesting history information: MTI’s logo which features a left-hand conductor, is an adaptation of an illustration made by Al Hirschfeld (1903-2003), the leading caricaturist of Broadway, who was awarded with the National Medal of Arts. Many have assumed that the conductor of the illustration is MTI’s co-founder Frank Loesser, however such assumption is not correct, because F. Loesser was right-handed. Al Hirschfeld used to hide his daughter’s name (Nina), often several times in his drawings. In the original drawing of MTI’s logo, the name Nina may be found at least eight times.