November 17, 2019 at 9:13 pm #1203184158
It should be interesting to see how long The Inheritance will end up running on Broadway given the production’s middle-of-the-road grosses it’s received so far during previews.November 18, 2019 at 7:05 am #1203184726
Martin McDonagh’s award-winning play, Hangmen, will finally be moving to Broadway at the John Golden Theatre this spring.
https://ew.com/theater/2019/11/18/martin-mcdonagh-hangmen-broadway-announcement/?utm_term=5104BE78-0A14-11EA-9C35-0BF24744363C&utm_content=link&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=entertainmentweekly_ew&utm_source=twitter.comNovember 20, 2019 at 6:46 am #1203191514
A few thoughts on some of this season’s offerings I saw over the weekend. So far, a below-average crop in general.
Jagged Little Pill (Saturday matinee): The staging is busier than a one-armed paper hanger. They bring on the ensemble for nearly every scene. To me, pumping up the musical numbers like that indicates a lack of trust in the story, and for good reason. The characters are just overloaded symbols of a society in chaos. It was hard for me to feel for them. (That said, the woman seated next to me burst into tears during one of the many late-show crises and blubbered until the end.) I will say the singing was killer, the songs were reasonably organic to their moments, and Antonio Cipriano is giving a breakout performance. There were also some good one-liners; I’m still chuckling at the blondies joke. Mostly a misfire though.
Tina (Saturday evening): The terrible book is mostly what’s holding this one back. There’s barely an ounce of subtlety in it; the only scene that strikes me as good writing is Tina’s appeal to a motel manager at the end of the first act. The biggest problem was the depiction of Ike. By all accounts he was a violent person and any man who beats women is a rat bastard. But in this presentation, he may as well have been named Snidely Whiplash; he was almost comically quick to rage. For all I know, it’s completely accurate but in this format it didn’t work because we got no sense of the magnetism that would draw anyone to him for more than five minutes. In spite of these issues, we still have the joy of Adrienne Warren blazing across the footlights like a supernova; I have no idea how she gives this performance once a week, let alone six times. She carries us across the rough patches and is completely convincing as both a naive teenager and a world-weary superstar. The final scene transition into the concert stage in Brazil is a thrilling moment and the mini-concert ends the show on a high note. A note on the house: It’s been a minute since I was at the Lunt-Fontanne–I think the last thing I saw there was Titanic over 20 years ago. I’d forgotten what a lovely theater it is, with its capacious lobbies and the wonderful photos of its namesake couple in the lower lounge.
Soft Power (Sunday matinee): My first time venturing down to the Public, something I’ve wanted to do for a while. The show itself is a bit of a jumble of ideas–too flawed and weird to ever be really commercially viable but too ambitious and fascinating to dismiss outright. They may have been wise to invite a more felicitous lyricist onto the project at some point. I’m glad I saw it though.
Moulin Rouge! (Sunday evening): I enjoyed this a lot more than I thought I would. It’s the ultimate in style over substance, but what style! The plot is, of course, gossamer-thin, but I barely minded because it’s so slick and goes down so easy. In spite of the fact that she’s playing a stock character, Karen Olivo is giving a real performance and singing with color and texture. Aaron Tveit looks and sounds very pretty. Danny Burstein is having a high old time, but I’m not sure this is the role that’s finally going to win him a Tony. Speaking of Tonys, I expect the show will score at least the Scenic Design, Costume Design, Lighting Design, and Choreography trophies. The weekly running cost for this must be astronomical, but so far the box office is supporting it.November 20, 2019 at 7:29 pm #1203193837
A Christmas Carol seems to be somewhat divisive:November 20, 2019 at 11:07 pm #1203194151
I saw Little Shop of Horrors last night – sat front row center and was spat on by Jonathan Groff multiple times, but I’m not complaining – and I freaking loved it!!! Definitely the best show I have seen this season so far. I expect this to sweep the Lucille Lortel awards and it could pull a Yiddish Fiddler and sweep the pre-Tony Awards against Broadway revivals. It is THAT good. Jonathan Groff and Christian Borle were absolutely fantastic. Tammy Blanchard was the weak link in the show, but still wasn’t bad.November 21, 2019 at 5:29 pm #1203196037
In Michael Riedel’s latest column, he talks about how The Inheritance has so far been struggling on Broadway and questions its chances at the 2020 Tony Awards.
https://nypost.com/2019/11/21/the-inheritance-struggles-at-broadway-box-office/November 21, 2019 at 6:36 pm #1203196119
Riedel never tells us anything new in his columns. It’s obvious Lehman is now the frontrunner after Inheritance’s mixed reviews. I wonder how much waste of money he gets paid to write his crap.December 2, 2019 at 12:49 pm #1203212213
The out-of-town tryout of the Mrs. Doubtfire musical has now extended its run in Seattle through January 4th, 2020.
https://www.broadwayworld.com/article/MRS-DOUBTFIRE-Will-Be-Extended-Through-January-4-2020-20191202December 4, 2019 at 7:21 am #1203215551
Casting has been announced for the upcoming Broadway production of Hangmen. Which includes Mark Addy, Tracie Bennett, Ewen Bremner, Owen Campbell, Gaby French, John Hodgkinson, Richard Hollis, John Horton, and Dan Stevens.
https://www.broadwayworld.com/article/Tracie-Bennett-Dan-Stevens-And-More-Announced-For-Martin-McDonaghs-HANGMEN-On-Broadway-20191204December 4, 2019 at 9:36 am #1203216062
Laura Linney’s one woman show “My Name is Lucy Barton” will begin its previews early, on January 4.December 5, 2019 at 4:54 pm #1203219247
In Michael Riedel’s latest column, he talks about how the commercial failure of Tootsie could loom over Mrs. Doubtfire.
https://nypost.com/2019/12/05/mrs-doubtfire-musical-producers-dogged-by-tootsie-broadway-failure/December 5, 2019 at 7:08 pm #1203219392
Jagged Little Pill has opened on Broadway, and the critical response has been mixed-to-positive.
https://www.broadwayworld.com/article/Review-Roundup-JAGGED-LITTLE-PILL-Opens-On-Broadway-See-What-The-Critics-Are-Saying-20191205December 6, 2019 at 3:52 pm #1203220512
You had it right originally. It’s been more mixed than mixed to positive. The NY Times review by Jesse Green shows just how irrelevant the paper has become when it comes to influencing theatre.December 10, 2019 at 8:38 am #1203229004
Sources are reporting that Tony-winning choreographer Sergio Trujillo has been brought in as a consultant on the revival of West Side Story. If true, could bringing in a more mainstream Broadway vet signal trouble for this avant-garde revival, which has its first public preview tonight? The show has a long, two-month preview period, so there is plenty of time to adjust things that aren’t working.December 10, 2019 at 8:58 am #1203229032
Let’s just hope this doesn’t turn into a problematic preview period like the 2003 Bernadette Peters-led revival of Gypsy. There was reportedly a lot of tension between director Sam Mendes and book writer Arthur Laurents. Though if any more allegations come out against Amar Ramasar during previews within the next two months, I imagine he’ll probably be fired before opening night.
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