It’s been a hectic few weeks – between finals and the holidays, I haven’t had any time to review the wonderful productions I saw over thanksgiving and winter break. Instead of doing a long review of each of them, I thought I would just post a few mini reviews with some thoughts. I’ll start with Thanksgiving break, so here are my bite-sized reviews of three of the five shows I saw that week – I’m happy to say I can rave about them!
Avenue Q (Non-equity Tour, The Colonial Theater, Boston) – I’ve seen Avenue Q before and loved it, but this tour cast is absolutely fantastic. This show is definitely not for kids – it’s billed as an “adult” musical known for its gratuitous use of puppet nudity. It’s truly hilarious and unpredictable and the music is catchy to boot. Brent DiRoma was standout as Princeton/Rod (most actors in Avenue Q play more than one part) but the cast as a whole was terrific.
Rent (“The Broadway Tour”, Providence Performing Arts Center, Providence, RI) – I travelled to Providence with some friends to see this show and I have to say, it was well worth my time. I’m not the biggest Renthead, but I was pretty excited to see Adam Pascal and Anthony Rapp as Roger and Mark, respectively; Pascal and Rapp were in the original Broadway cast of Rent back in 1996. They were fantastic. I was so impressed with both of them – they’ve played Mark and Roger so many times since the show first opened, yet their performances were still fresh and natural. These two definitely aren’t phoning it in.
Finian’s Rainbow (St. James Theater, Broadway) – I went in not knowing much about the plot or score of Finian’s Rainbow, though I knew that the show was a bit older and slow-paced than the typical Broadway fare today. The show itself is an utter delight – it deserves every single rave it got in the mainstream press. Literally everything in this show is superb; the casting is spot on (someone hand Kate Baldwin her Tony nom -STAT!!) and the sets, lighting and costumes are wonderful. But what I love most about Finian’s is that it feels like a old-timey show (and I mean that in a good way.) I love that no one tried to “modernize” it, that would have never worked. It’s classic and timeless all on its own.
My next post will tackle a the other 2 shows I saw over Thanksgiving, and a few of the 8 shows I saw over winter break!
Anyone see any shows they want to rave about?