Obscurity Knocks

Earnest, empathetic, industrious, unpretentious, gay Virgo in Milwaukee with a great life, amazing friends, and a wonderful family.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Broadway shows I've seen, 2008

1. Gypsy, 1990. St. James Theatre. A revival starring Tyne Daly. I was captivated, especially since I'm always interested in the "American dream" theme.
2. Meet Me in St. Louis, 1990. George Gershwin Theatre. See my prior post about Jason Workman for details. It was cute but certainly not groundbreaking.
3. Show Boat, 1996. George Gershwin Theatre. Quite entertaining and an important show in the history of the American musical.
4. Victor/Victoria, 1997. Marquis Theatre. An absolutely amazing experience since I had the privilege of seeing Ms. Julie Andrews perform live. This was before she lost her ability to sing due to a botched operation on her vocal cords. She was, is, and always will be the best.
5. A Doll's House, 1997. Belasco Theatre. I've been fascinated by this play since the first time I read it in a drama literature class in 1993. Since I'm one-half Norwegian, I have a particular fondness for Henrik Ibsen, a playwright who was most certainly ahead of his time. The performance was captivating.
6. Phantom of the Opera, 1997. Majestic Theatre. Garish and banal. I only went because my travel companion really wanted to see it.
7. Rent, 1997. Nederlander Theatre. Inspirational and relevant. I was singing along with the soundtrack for months after seeing this musical.
8. Take Me Out, 2003. Walter Kerr Theatre. We scored front row seats from TKTS, which was particularly pleasant since the men in the cast spend much of the show fully naked. It was refreshing to see a gay-themed show.
9. Hairspray, 2003. Neil Simon Theatre. The most fun show I've seen to date and the one where the audience had the loudest reaction. Harvey Fierstein was hilarious as Edna Turnblad and Marissa Jaret Winokur sparkled as Tracy Turnblad.
10. Wicked, 2006. George Gershwin Theatre. Much happier and more positive than Gregory Maguire's innovative and original novel. The songs were particularly interesting.
11. The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, 2006. Circle in the Square Theatre. A charming story. I have a crush on Barrett Foa who played Leaf Coneybear. Barrett, will you go out with me?
12. Mary Poppins, 2006. New Amsterdam Theatre. A terrific and invigorating take on the classic story by P. L. Travers and the Disney film. The sets were amazing, the dancing was superb, and the kids playing Jane and Michael Banks were charming. Gavin Lee as Burt stole the show.

13. Jersey Boys, 2007. August Wilson Theatre. This was an entertaining show chronicling the story of the The Four Seasons, in particular the partnership between songwriter Bob Gaudio and singer Frankie Valli. I enjoyed the musical numbers, and the show has some semblance of a plot. Overall, it was entertaining but hardly spectacular. The average age in the theatre was about 60. The people from that generation who grew up listening to The Four Seasons had much more of an emotional connection with the show than me. Since music connects with people on such a deep emotional level, it stands to reason that the generation who grew up with The Four Seasons would be more into the performance than me. I'm sure that I would have a similar reaction to a musicl about Erasure or The Cure 30 years from now.

14. Boeing-Boeing, 2008. Longacre Theatre. A humerous comedy with excellent actors including Christine Baranski and Bradley Whitford. The entire cast had solid comedic acting chops. Cute and entertaining but not excellent.


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