Broadway musicals

Which Broadway show would you recommend ?

  • Aladdin

    Votes: 12 12.5%
  • Anastasia

    Votes: 5 5.2%
  • Cats

    Votes: 10 10.4%
  • Charlie & the Chocolate Factory

    Votes: 4 4.2%
  • Hamilton

    Votes: 40 41.7%
  • Miss Saigon

    Votes: 21 21.9%
  • The Book of Mormon

    Votes: 35 36.5%
  • The Phantom of the Opera

    Votes: 29 30.2%
  • Wicked

    Votes: 33 34.4%
  • Other

    Votes: 24 25.0%

  • Total voters
    96

barbk

Well-Known Member
Messages
8,259
These are great! We saw the solicitation on Easter Sunday when we were at Hello, Dolly! I'd love to go to one of these benefits next year.

FWIW, D just saw Mean Girls last week and loved it.
 

VGThuy

Well-Known Member
Messages
41,022
I just caught some clips from Summer: The Donna Summer Musical (who came up with that title?) and I think LaChanze deserves a better vehicle.
 

Artistic Skaters

Drawing Figures
Messages
8,150
CBS News did a segment about Michael Arden who is the director of the Once on This Island revival. He has a couple gender swapping roles in the new production. Plus (a BIG +) it has Lea Salonga.

*** How a Broadway director's art became a true reflection of himself :
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/once-o...-director-michael-arden-a-more-perfect-union/
And in Arden's current show, two major roles are Broadway debuts: Tony-nominee Hailey Kilgore, whom Arden plucked out of college; and Alex Newell, a male actor in the traditionally female role of Mother Earth.

Not only did Arden cast a male actor in a female role in "Once On This Island," he also cast a female actor in the role of the God of Death – traditionally played by a man.[/
 

screech

Well-Known Member
Messages
7,411
So I just came across a fact that I never knew, but was maybe common knowledge... Michael Crawford, aka the original Phantom of the Opera was part of Torvill and Dean's coaching team! From the T/D wikipedia page...
Singer-actor Michael Crawford was the fourth member of the team, along with their trainer. He became a mentor to them around 1981, and went on to help them create their 1983 and 1984 Olympic routines, and "taught them how to act". Crawford said of them, "I found them to be delightful young people, the kind you want to help if you can."

He can be seen with them in the K&C at the 83 Worlds, overjoyed with their straight 6.0s.
 

missing

Well-Known To Whom She Wonders
Messages
4,882
Last week I went to a matinee of My Fair Lady at Lincoln Center and then on Sunday to an Audra McDonald concert in Newark. Both were wonderful theater experiences.

It all came together when Ms. McDonald led us (well, not me because my voice could kill small animals) in a singalong to "I Could Have Danced All Night."

Having seen Carousel earlier this spring, I was particularly interested in how this production of My Fair Lady dealt with the issue of an emotionally abusive male lead. What was acceptable (or at least not Kill The Bastard) male behavior 50-60 years ago is tricky to make work in 2018. I was all in favor of Eliza marrying Freddy, who was relatively useless but clearly adored and respected her (and the actor who played him was very attractive with a great voice).

It was also fun to let Wikipedia guide me through the various endings of Pygmalion and My Fair Lady over the decades. I liked the one this My Fair Lady used. It's a shame Carousel didn't have options.
 

VGThuy

Well-Known Member
Messages
41,022
Last week I went to a matinee of My Fair Lady at Lincoln Center and then on Sunday to an Audra McDonald concert in Newark. Both were wonderful theater experiences.

It all came together when Ms. McDonald led us (well, not me because my voice could kill small animals) in a singalong to "I Could Have Danced All Night."

Having seen Carousel earlier this spring, I was particularly interested in how this production of My Fair Lady dealt with the issue of an emotionally abusive male lead. What was acceptable (or at least not Kill The Bastard) male behavior 50-60 years ago is tricky to make work in 2018. I was all in favor of Eliza marrying Freddy, who was relatively useless but clearly adored and respected her (and the actor who played him was very attractive with a great voice).

It was also fun to let Wikipedia guide me through the various endings of Pygmalion and My Fair Lady over the decades. I liked the one this My Fair Lady used. It's a shame Carousel didn't have options.

When I saw My Fair Lady earlier, it was a production where I would have been happy if she ended up with Freddy or by herself at the end. Jordan Donica who plays Freddy is indeed pretty hot with a dreamy voice, but he also plays him a lot less simpering and foolish than other productions. His Freddy seems to have some hidden substance with the way he was directed in this production. Which is funny because I found Harry Hadden-Paton the most appealing and attractive Higgins and I loved the chemistry between him and Lauren Ambrose compared to Rex Harrison and Audrey Hepburn in the film. I think because of the time we're living in, I just cannot see Eliza and Higgins working if we stay true to the text and characters, even if Higgins grows. He'll never provide Eliza with what she really wants which she clearly explains in the beginning with "Loverly". Despite her growth and the new avenues opened for her, I still think what she ultimately wants is a warm room, lots of chocolates, and someone warm and tender who rests his head on her knee. Especially if she grew up with that sort of father who wasn't much of a caretaker, grew up in rough areas, and had to fend for herself all of her life. Heck, she even stays at a lodging house where she had to share with other strangers and they all would have to vacate during the day and you'd have to pay money to enter again at night. At least, that's how Ambrose explained it in an interview. That's something I never caught before but Eliza does indeed say "I'm short for my lodging" early on.
 

Wyliefan

Ubering juniors against my will
Messages
44,081
I've seen the stage show many times, and the movie so many times I have most of it memorized (seriously, I could give you the scene at Mrs. Higgins's house right now 😀), and I don't think of Higgins as abusive at all. Selfish, blustering, and thoughtless, yes; abusive, no. From all the descriptions of this show, I'm concerned that it elides what I think is an important distinction (if every selfish, blustering, and thoughtless man is an abuser, the word loses all meaning). But I have tickets for August, so I guess I'll see for myself.

By all accounts Sher has put together an amazing production, and I appreciate that, but I get a touch irritated by his attitude that he had to swoop in and rescue Eliza from a situation that, in other versions, she handled just fine in the way that she chose to handle it.

I know, I know, fictional character. Don't @ me, as they say on Twitter. :D But she's a fictional character who's always meant a lot to me precisely because of her great strength and her ability to deal with Higgins on her own terms.
 

VGThuy

Well-Known Member
Messages
41,022
This might be spoilerish so read at your own risk:

In this production, I don't believe Harry Hadden-Paton plays Higgins as abusive as all. In fact, I think this is a very sympathetic portrayal of Higgins compared to the brow-beating, screaming version of Higgins we're all used to with Rex Harrison. I think what Sher and Hadden-Paton brought forth was Higgins' serious desire as a scientist and academic who doesn't get social norms and mores or can't connect in that way but has a sincere belief that Eliza can better herself and is very much interested and invested in helping her get there. That said, I think it sort of think that without that dominating presence to strong-arm us into falling for Higgins' force of nature, it makes it even murkier about Higgins and Eliza's prospects as an actual romantic couple even though there's obviously some tender feelings there.

I think what Sher just means about swooping in and rescuing Eliza isn't really that. He was very interested in bring the Shaw ending and intent back into MFL but knows he has to reconcile that with Alan Jay Lerner's book and ending which was very much a product of its time AND what people really wanted to see much to Shaw's chagrin. In this way, Eliza's future is ambiguous and we don't know if she ultimately will go back to Higgins but at that moment he has some soul searching to do while she needs to discover the world on her own for a bit. All of this with a change in stage direction and no change of dialogue.
 
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VGThuy

Well-Known Member
Messages
41,022
Here's a treat. Kelli O'Hara and Ken Watanabe are reprising their roles in the 2015 Broadway production of The King and I in London:

Some rehearsal footage and an interview with O'Hara and Watanabe:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e7x6iYUivdc

Here's a 23 minute rehearsal video:

https://youtu.be/C4vCKcxcMO0

Watanabe's accent is a bit thick here, but I think he's getting back into the groove of the performance and it will be better as he gets back into the role. I saw him live and I understood him well, as did a bunch of people I overheard talking during intermission outside Lincoln Center.

The 23-minute video is a fascinating watch I find. I like seeing Bartlett Sher in action. I imagine this is how he directed My Fair Lady.
 

screech

Well-Known Member
Messages
7,411
Here's a treat. Kelli O'Hara and Ken Watanabe are reprising their roles in the 2015 Broadway production of The King and I in London
There have been rumours that Ruthie Ann Miles would return to her Tony-Winning role as Lady Thiang, but she has not yet made a decision on returning to the stage after the horrible year she's had so far (being hit by a car that killed her daughter, and later her unborn child).

In any case, who else is excited it's just 2 days until the TONYS!!!!
 

Wyliefan

Ubering juniors against my will
Messages
44,081
There have been rumours that Ruthie Ann Miles would return to her Tony-Winning role as Lady Thiang, but she has not yet made a decision on returning to the stage after the horrible year she's had so far (being hit by a car that killed her daughter, and later her unborn child).

In any case, who else is excited it's just 2 days until the TONYS!!!!

I believe it's been confirmed now. I saw the other day that she's going to share the role with another actress in London. It must take great strength to do that -- I'm praying it will be a healing experience for her.
 

screech

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Messages
7,411
I believe it's been confirmed now. I saw the other day that she's going to share the role with another actress in London. It must take great strength to do that -- I'm praying it will be a healing experience for her.
There'd been reports she'd be back, but as of yesterday (most recent news postings I could find), the producers of the show said that no decision has been made, despite the fact that she's listed on the show's website.
If she does end up doing it, I'm hoping it's a positive experience for her, which she absolutely deserves right now. I can't even fathom what she's been going through these last few months.
 

VGThuy

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Messages
41,022
It's absolutely horrific to imagine what she went through and has to go through.
 

screech

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Messages
7,411
The red carpet is on. I'm watching the CBS feed on facebook. The host is okay, but I thought Erich Bergen did a better job last year.

Speaking of, Erich made his Broadway debut in Waitress just a few days ago. I'd totally though he'd been on Broadway before, but he'd only done the tour and Vegas productions of Jersey Boys.
 

VGThuy

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Messages
41,022

screech

Well-Known Member
Messages
7,411
So Moulin Rouge started their Boston pre-Broadway try-outs earlier this week. A few sneakily recorded audio clips are out there now (I've only seen them on Tumblr), including some new songs added to the production. They've included more songs from the last 50 years, and added some from the time since the movie was released, including a medley of Shut Up and Dance/Raise Your Glass/I Wanna Dance With Somebody, and a medley of Bad Romance/Seven Nation Army/Toxic/Sweet Dreams

From what I've heard so far, I'm most impressed with Roxanne. Aaron Tveit usually comes off as very mild, even in his singing, but he gets the passion in this one, and gets some good belting in there.
 

VGThuy

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Messages
41,022
^ I read that they took out "One Day I'll Fly Away" from the show. The creatives need to watch Ashley Wagner's program and put it back in.
 

screech

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Messages
7,411
Well that sucks! There is a bit of speculation that maybe they couldn't get the rights for that song. Apparently there's also no The Show Must Go On". I also read that "Like A Virgin" is out, but that it's due to a plot change.

From what I'm reading (on the Broadway World message boards) it's getting kind of mixed reviews. People are saying that choreography and set are amazing (that set blows my mind), and that Aaron Tveit, Karen Olivo, and Danny Burstein are mostly fantastic, though that Burstein is wasted in the role (and some say that Aaron is too 'wholesome' for the role). Apparently the book needs a lot of work. Which is kind of the purpose of these out of town try-outs.

In reading the list of ALL songs included (and it's one hell of a list), it seems like a bit too much. Some of the new songs make sense (Bad Romance, Toxic, Tainted Love, Sweet Dreams), but others seem like they were added just to add them (I mean... Ride Wit Me? Never Gonna Give You Up? Raise Your Glass? Hey Ya?) I hope they cut some - apparently audience members were laughing at times due to the random snippets of pop songs, mainly done as mash-ups.

Song list under spoiler tag, just becuase there's so damn many
Amores Como El Nuestro
Bad Romance
Because We Can
Brick House
Can’t Help Falling in Love
Chandelier
Children of the Revolution
Come What May
Crazy
Diamonds
Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend
Diamonds are Forever
Don’t Speak
Don’t You Want Me
Everlasting Love
Every Breath You Take
Fidelity
Firework
Galop Infernal
Gimme Shelter
Heroes
Hey Ya!
I Don’t Want to Wait
I Love You Always Forever
I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)
I Will Always Love You
It Ain’t Me Babe
Jungle Boogie
L’amour Est Oiseaux
La Vie en Rose
Lady Marmalade
Love Hurts
Love is a Battlefield
Material Girl
Milord
Money (That’s What I Want)
Mr. Big Stuff
Nature Boy
Never Gonna Give You Up
One More Night
Only Girl in the World
Play the Game
Pride (In the Name of Love)
Raise Your Glass
Rhythm of the Night
Ride Wit Me
Rolling the Deep
Roxanne
Royals
Seven Nation Army
Shake It Out
Shut Up and Dance
Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It)
So Fresh So Clean
Such Great Heights
Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)
Sympathy for the Devil
Tainted Love
Take On Me
The Sound of Music
Torn
Toxic
Up Where We Belong
We Are Young
What’s Love Got to Do with It
You Can’t Always Get What You Want
You Spin Me Round
Your Song

In other show news, The Cher Show is just finishing its Chicago try-outs, and is expected to open on Broadway in December. Awesomely, Bob Mackie is the costume designer. It seems a bit like the Donner Summer musical in a way, in that three different actresses are playing the title role at different stages. The "star" Cher is played by two-time Tony nominee Stephanie J Block. A video of the finale song to "Believe" is on Youtube. Cher herself has said she's generally pleased with the show, but that some parts need work.
 
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judiz

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Messages
5,314
My nephew is the new understudy for Mr Krabs and Patrick in Spongebob Squarepants! He started rehearsals last week and will be eligible to go onstage July 31st. The show is closing in September but he is hoping to get to perform at least once. This is his first Broadway contract, even though the show is closing, he is extremely grateful for the opportunity.
 

VGThuy

Well-Known Member
Messages
41,022
My nephew is the new understudy for Mr Krabs and Patrick in Spongebob Squarepants! He started rehearsals last week and will be eligible to go onstage July 31st. The show is closing in September but he is hoping to get to perform at least once. This is his first Broadway contract, even though the show is closing, he is extremely grateful for the opportunity.

Amazing opportunity! Congratulations to your nephew. I know it's not easy making it as far as he has so he deserves all the props for doing it.
 

screech

Well-Known Member
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7,411
My nephew is the new understudy for Mr Krabs and Patrick in Spongebob Squarepants! He started rehearsals last week and will be eligible to go onstage July 31st. The show is closing in September but he is hoping to get to perform at least once. This is his first Broadway contract, even though the show is closing, he is extremely grateful for the opportunity.
That is absolutely fantastic! Huge congratulations to him!
This will open a lot of doors for him moving forward, and maybe he'll even get to play one of the roles when the show goes on tour (I believe starting next year).
Congratulations again on the amazing opportunity!
 

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