Thursday, January 25, 2007

Somebody crowd me with love, somebody force me to care

So yeah, this is where I'm gonna wax rhapsodic (mostly) about the rest of the thea-tah I checked out when in New York. Here's the lowdown:

OMG, y'all. It's Stephen Sondheim/George Furth, so you know it's gonna be good. No matter how they might muck up the production, there'll still be the songs. In this case, they took a minimalist approach, the same one this producer used last year (to great acclaim) with Sweeney Todd, with the actors doubling as the orchestra. I thought it might be distracting, but it was really cool, and in some instances really highlighted the songs. When there is a bare minimum of set and nary a special effect, all the focus is on the acting and the singing and Raul Esparza (oh sweet, sweet Jesus) is up to the task.He's quiet (and chic in Armani) but seething behind his drinks and his jokes through the entire play until he erupts in a version of "Being Alive" that brings the house down. Bobby, baby, Bobby, bubbi, I'm five years later, but I hear you. We seek out things and we seek out answers and we seek out meaning, but maybe all we need is the right company. Check out some video from opening night here.

PS Raul has been in the press recently for making certain discoveries/disclosures about himself. Go team!

ADDED: After seeing Company (and having coffee with Paula Abdul), I was riding the elevator back up to my room with two frosted queens who were SAVAGING the show they'd just seen. Turns out it was Grey Gardens, which I'd loved. By floor 12 I had them convinced the second half was genius and by floor 36 they thought it was the best thing they'd ever seen. Such are my powers of persuasion. Then the older one blew me. Same reason.


Tobi said...

de-lurking to sing the praises of Raul Esparza. i saw him (live) in Cabaret and have seen him in videos of Jonathan Larson's Tick...Tick...Boom! (not to mention many audio recordings of various shows). Raul is definitely one of the best things that has ever happened to theatre (and hopefully one day to film). brilliant.

Michael said...

tobi, I adore him! They actually worked on this production of Company in Cincinnati before bringing it to Broadway and I missed it, so I was glad that I got to see it in New York.

I've seen a local production of Tick...Tick...Boom!, but wasn't aware of videos with Raul. Where are those?

Oh yeah! I just noticed that the cast recording of this Company comes out in a few weeks. OK, I'll stop now.

Michael said...

And thanks for delurking/commenting!

Michael said...