MICHAEL CUMPSTY       MEREDITH PATTERSON
CHRISTINE EBERSOLE

MARY TESTA      DAVID ELDER     BILL BUELL
MICHAEL ARNOLD     MYLINDA HULL

 

This is definitely a musical done for those who really love musicals. As one of those, I don't have words to describe what I felt while watching it, but I'll try. The truth is that I don't know (English isn't my native language, as you probably have guessed) enough positive adjectives to rave about this amazing musical.

I never saw the original production so this was all new for me and I can't draw comparisons between this revival and the original. As someone who saw several of the Busby Berkeley's movies of the 30s one thing I know, the creators of this musical not only caught the spirit of those musicals but they also came up with a much better example of those.

I was completely mesmerized while watching it and I've to confess I never thought it would be so good. From the imaginative sets to the colourful costumes, not forgetting the exciting orchestrations, everything works superbly on stage. The book surprised me, it's funnier than I expected and wraps the whole action with a perfect sense of timing. The direction by Mark Bramble is flawless and than there's the exciting, wonderful, amazing, fabulous (you get my point) choreography by Randy Skinner. He not only recreated some of Gower Champions' work but also came up with new numbers. The result is fascinating and the public went crazy with each number.

The cast couldn't be better. I was afraid that Michael Cumptsy wouldn't be convincing as Julian Marsh, but he delivers a "greater than life" performance. Christine Ebersole is a perfect bitchy diva. As the chorus girl that became a star, Meredith Patterson is a true revelation, tapping as a storm and conquering our hearts. At her side David Elder is excellent as Billy and Michael Arnold really knows how to tap. One final word for the terrific Mary Testa, who as Maggie steals every scene she appears.

And then there are the spectacular girls and boys of the chorus. Without them this show wouldn't be possible and they are simply amazing. Each one of them is a flawless dancer and together they burn the stage with passion, rhythm and lovely smiles.

I know that THE PRODUCERS won almost all this years theatre awards and that's not fair, this revival deserved the ones for choreography, sets and supporting actress for Mary Testa. Anyway this is one of the best musicals I ever saw!

I hope it'll have a long run so I can see it again and again. Maybe someone will record it on DVD or video. Until that day I'll keep remembering my favorite numbers "Go Into Your Dance" and "With Plenty of Money and You".

 

music by
HARRY WARREN
lyrics by
AL DUBIN


book by
MICHAEL STEWART & MARK BRAMBLE

choreography by
RANDY SKINNER
directed by
MARK BRAMBLE


Rated by Jorge: +++++