The version of Camelot currently being produced by Musical Theater Works is an experiment in evolving old-school musicals. Other productions of Camelot that I have seen have always involved large casts and long run times. In fact, a 2012 staging by Light Opera Works (which became Music Theater Works several years ago) ran over three hours despite cutting “Fie on Goodness!”—one of my favorite songs. The current version playing at the Center for Performing Arts in Skokie is just under two hours and features a minimal cast of just nine actors.
The origins of this version of Camelot date back to 2014, when New York director David Lee revised the script condensing almost all of the exposition to sentences narrated by various cast members. The philosophy is that the strength of Camelot is the songs by Lerner and Loewe, while its original book (also by Lerner) is bogged down with too much Arthurian lore. Does this version work? Yes, in many ways it does.