Tuesday, October 5, 2010

LOGOS: Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown

At some point, today was to be the first preview of the new Yazbek-Lane musical, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown.  Of course, now we know that was not meant to be.  But I scheduled a blog about its logo for today, and unlike the show, I'm sticking to my schedule!

One of the many film posters

The show, based on the Pedro Almodovar film of the same name, takes its logo from one of several movie posters for the film.  And the choice was a good one, based on what little I know so far about either property. 

The "High-Fashion" Broadway Cast

A curious mix of images, the entire thing evokes two sensibilities in my mind at the same time: the high fashion world of classic Vogue, which often featured covers with disembodied eyes, lips, shoes... all depending upon the focus of that given issue or lead story.  Since much has been made so far in the press releases for the show, there is a certain vintage, high-fashion feel to the show (the images of the musical, at least).  I don't know about you, but when I see a high fashion show it always makes me laugh a little at the extremity of each garment, as if 100% of a certain style has to be encapsulated in a given piece.  Similarly, the "fashion" production photos of the show also make me giggle, not only at the extremity of fashion, but the extremity of the looks on their faces.

The Broadway Musical version

Which brings me to the second sensibility that comes to mind when I look at the logo for the show: it looks rather colorfully zany, which I am hoping the show will be.  I mean look at the specific images!  Extreme color - not just red, but RED, not just eyelashes, but EYELASHES!  And, of course the placement of the images, in a helter-skelter way plays into that free-for-all feel.  Color-coded legs... a face in a shoe... those eyes watching so intensely.

The colorful and varied type styles of the title cause me to think many things, all of which are in keeping with what little I know about the show so far.  There is a certain European feel to the eclectic style of print and lettering.  The variation in type also feeds into the notion of high emotion - nervousness, if you will.  Like the colorful images, the equally colorful lettering adds to the festive, frenzied feel of the piece.  And with "Women" and "Nervous Breakdown" so large and prominently displayed, one will expect to see women at their emotional peaks. 

The first musical of the 2010-2011 season,
and the first show at the newly
re-furbished Belasco Theatre!

One final note about the logo/windowcard.  I think it interesting and fitting that despite the fact that this is a star-studded vehicle, there is no cast billing (yet, at least) which implies, nicely, that this will be a total group effort, with no one diva out powering the others.  And it is nice to see that the people who will make the "breakdown" happen, writers David Yazbek and Jeffrey Lane, and director Bartlett Sher are getting billed.

Does the logo do the property justice? Is that how the show is?  I'm not sure, yet, but if the logo for this show really represents the show it is advertising, I have a feeling I am in for one fun, fast-paced ride!

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