A Moveable Feast

Anything having to do with dining, at home or out on the town...looking for restaurant visitations, sitings, great dishes, good times and the odd post of what ever catches my fancy!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Theatre Wrap up 2010 Season

Have been hitting the boards hard this season! So thought I would give my review of the shows I've seen thus far this season:

RED - Run don't walk for tickets, because once it wins the Tony for best play, you won't be able to get them, not to mention that it is a limited run till June 15th, but there is talk of extending it. Alfred Molina can always be counted on to give you your money's worth, but go see it for newcomer Eddie Redmayne. He manages a perfect balancing act between student and teacher. John Logan's play packs a wallop and all in 90 minutes with no intermission. Just a gorgeous pounding and thrilling package.

Eddie Redmayne in his Donmar Dressingroom. The NY one looks exactly the same!

View From A Bridge - Liev Schreiber thrills. I had no idea the power this actor welds. He comes with an arsenal of intensity that is a revelation. There is a reason Arthur Miller is one of our great American playwrights. He creates a world that is instantly absorbing. Scarlett Johansson is a treat to see on stage. It's not as strong a play as All My Sons or Salesman, but it is great theatre.

Behanding In Spokane - Only the double punch combination of Martin McDonagh's wonderfully visceral black comedy and Christopher Walken's jazzy slurry lunatic fringe performance can pull off what could otherwise be a thin piece of work. And Sam Rockwell is completely up to the tast of being as wacky as Walken. The entire cast is great! They do pull it off. It's deliciously hilarious.

Christopher Walken and Sam Rockwell, two masters at work.

Lend Me A Tenor - Loved it. Good clean farcical fun. Justin Bartha never has to worry that he won't find a home anytime on Broadway. Welcome to New York! He is a hoot. And you also have Tony Shaloub and Anthony LaPlaglia. What could be wrong with that? Nothing. Yay Stanley Tucci. You pulled it off sublimely.

Justin Bartha and Tony Shaloub who is also outstanding!

Come Fly Away - Oh Twyla, why isn't there more Tharp in your step. I heard it from a reliable source, that this show was purposely made more mainstream and while it is wonderful and a feast for the eyes, it just doesn't have that cut above, that we expect from this most noteworthy of choreographers. Or maybe I'm just spoiled. Charlie Neshyba-Hodges lighter than air moves are worth the price of admission.

Charlie Neshyba-Hodges gets air!

The Addam's Family - The story is ridiculous and the music is just so so, but shoot me for saying this, I still enjoyed it! It really does have it's funny moments, many of them in fact. I loved the dancing ghosts greek chorus, even if Brantley didn't, great choreo there. Poor Morticia, the writer's just couldn't get what her deal is, and that they came up with her worried about her looks and age, WELL!, that was just so wrong headed. Morticia NEVER worried about that. She was always completely in love with who she was and taking that away from her, left me cold. But Bebe's Neuwirth's torso is quite stunning and I dare anyone, man or woman, gay or straight, to be able to keep their eyes off her. Jackie Hoffman is hilarious, as she always is and who knew Nathan Lane was such a crooner? Kevin Chamberlin, though, as Uncle Fester, does a Chaplinesqe turn that just charmed me to the end.

Kevin Chamberlin, Terry Mann, Nathan Lane.

Promises, Promises - First the good news...Burt Bachrach never gets old. Kristen Chenowith, while not perfect for the role, I say, who cares, when you have pipes and looks like that! Tony Goldwyn brings depth to the role, that Fred MacMurray never had and he sings so sweetly! But the extra icing on this cake is Sean Hayes who is a joy from start to finish. No one I can think of, can break the fourth wall, so intimately. He's got you in his pocket and you are happy to stay there all night long. And then there is Katie Finneran, who won a tony for Noises Off. Well she does a comedic turn that is so satisfying, that you wish the story didn't turn serious, when she exits the stage. But this is based on The Apartment and it is really a dark piece. For that reason, here is the bad news: The relish with which the men in this show enjoys their adulterous behavior, is off putting and dated. That the secretaries are their prey is just gross and I hate to be unkind, but the fact that this is not the best looking ensemble, with some of the oddest choreography, makes me cringe through every dance number and wish I didn't have to see steno stools, coat racks and briefcases as dance props. Oh god, not good. It could have been so smart if they had only just updated this book, who's spine is wonderful, but, hey, what happened to the women's movement! Even Mad Men makes a concession or two on that score.
Sean Hayes & Katie Finneran open act II hilariously!

Here's the real deal. Go to theatre people, there is some great stuff out there. I'm thrilled I saw all of these shows and not one was a clunker, no matter what the New York Times says!

Stay tuned for upcoming reviews of Enron, Fela and Memphis!

Most of these photos are courtesy of Broadway.com, Playbill.com or the individual shows websites.


Post a Comment

<< Home