Springsteen has been performing an intimate, introspective show on Broadway since October of 2016. The show was originally only planned for six weeks, but has since been extended several times. It has also been filmed, and Netflix is now bringing that magic to the rest of the world.
The show falls somewhere between a concert and a one man show — though Springsteen is clearly not alone on stage for the whole thing. He tells stories, makes jokes and plays songs — both with a guitar and at the piano. Through it all, he attempts to draw a common thread through his life's work.
Springsteen talks about his family, describing his father as his "hero" and his "greatest foe." He picks a tune as he talks in some parts, while in others he just leans on the microphone stand, staring out into the crowd. At one point, he invites his wife of almost 30 years, Patti Scialfa, onto the stage.
By the looks of it, Springsteen does more than summarize the highlights of a successful career in the show. He takes a critical eye to his own work and actions, re-examining his most anthemic songs and inviting his fans to do the same.
"Everybody has a love - hate relationship with their hometown," he says at one point. "Take me, I'm Mr. Born to Run – I currently live 10 minutes from my hometown."
Springsteen is still on stage performing his show to this day, over two years later. He is finally wrapping up live performances on Dec. 15, just one day before the filmed special drops on Netflix.
Springsteen's performance has been lauded by theater critics and casual viewers alike. Earlier this year, he received a special award at the Tonys after performing a spoken-word rendition of a song from his show. It was presented to him by Billy Joel.
Few rock stars can claim to have had the same impact as Bruce Springsteen. The 69-year-old New Jersey native provided the U.S. with working class anthems all throughout the 1970s and 1980s, and continues to make records to this day.
In addition to his Broadway show, Springsteen took a retrospective look back on his life two years ago with his autobiography, Born to Run. The book has also achieved critical acclaim, with a 4.2 out of 5 star review on Goodreads. The book is considerably long at 528 pages, yet to many fans, Springsteen has earned that space to tell his story.
Springsteen on Broadway hits Netflix on Sunday, Dec. 16.