Wednesday, May 7, 2014

More Broadway Take Aways 2013-2014

You know, I've been compiling this list in my head since the beginning of the season. But as a blog entry (or two), it really came together as I stood there in the St. James Theatre, having just sat through the mostly appalling Bullets Over Broadway.  As we waited to exit the building, I turned to my buddy Mike and asked, "Do you really think Susan Stroman and Woody Allen want this show to be remembered for a very inappropriate Irving Berlin joke and dancing hot dogs wearing sock garters having their, uh, mustard rubbed?"  Fortunately, for every Bullets and Soul Doctor, there's been a Bridges and Menagerie to lift up my memories of the 2013-2014 Broadway season.

Yesterday, I shared my "take aways" from the first half of the season (HERE), and I actually have a few more to add after this week.  But here's the rest!  And, no, readers, my memories have nothing to do with the Tony Awards, though it is interesting how many of the nominees are what stick out in my mind!  Hmm... you think their nominations have anything to do with how memorable their work is? Duh. :-)

  • Aladdin: Fabulous costumes!  James Monroe Iglehart.  Hidden girls in "Friend Like Me," the most exciting production number of the season.
  • If/Then: La Chanze said "fuck," Idina Menzel sang "fuck."  James Snyder was heartbreaking. Idina Menzel is a STAR. Lights equal reality changes.
  • Bullets Over Broadway: See above. Plus, I can't erase the image of Helene Yorke scooting around the floor like a dog scratching its ass, picking up loose change with her...
  • Les Miserables: "Bring Him Home" was wonderful. Caissie Levy is the best Fantine ever. Boring and unnecessarily gross (Keala Settle should be embarrassed.) 

  • Violet: Sutton Foster is an amazing stage actress and musical theatre legend-in-the-making.  Annie Golden should be a legend.  Joshua Henry is one of my favorite young actors of all time.
  • Hedwig and the Angry Inch: Neil Patrick Harris is a phenomenon, with a beautiful, and I mean beautiful body. The set was full of surprises.  "Origin of Love" is the perfect marriage of theater and technology. Lena Hall. There aren't words.  OK. How about "Her talents were wasted in Kinky Boots.

  • Cabaret: Alan Cumming was worth the 16 year wait.  Michelle Williams' "Cabaret" was the most spellbinding six minutes I've spent in any theatre in years. Whispering "Welcome to Berlin."

I'll tell you about the rest after this weekend.


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