Saturday, July 22, 2006

I've just seen the best play ever put on at Miller Outdoor Theater.

Theater Under the Stars is presenting Brooklyn the Musical through Sunday. Although it is free it has top-notch performers, American Idol's Diana DeGarmo and Broadway's Melba Moore, and is a top quality production all the way. Highly recommended.

The back story is as fascinating as the story told in the musical. That story is framed as some Brooklyn street performers putting on a musical on a street corner under the Brooklyn Bridge.
"Imagine 'Hair' or 'Godspell,' throw in a helping of Motown and filter the whole thing through the pyrotechnics of 'American Idol.'"
- Ben Brantley, New York Times
I would also add it reminds me a bit of Tommy.

Brooklyn The Musical on Broadway - the comic.

Playing at Miller Outdoor Theater in Herman Park Saturday and Sunday at 8:15.

An original cast album received very mixed reviews. The book may be better. The touring production may be better than the original Broadway show.

The snobbish Houston Chronicle theater critic predictably trashed it. The Chronicle has never given a good review to a Miller Theater free performance, just passing grades to some Shakespeare. He did do an interview which at least allows them to present their story. Everett Evans, the Chronicle reviewer, is such a snob - implying that they didn't even belong on Broadway with only a six-person cast and trash used in the costumes and scenery. Idiot - that is part of the appeal of this show. That it is the creation of a homeless street musician and story-teller and that this is how he would put on a show. That is both true and the frame of the show.

So, based on the other reviews I would have to say you will either love this musical or hate it. I love it even though I hate American Idol which is another influence along with musical street theater on the show.

1 comment:

Robert Nagle said...

I also loved this play. Summer TUTS performance at Miller Theatre is one of the best-kept secrets of Houston.

Coincidentally last Wednesday at 7 (one of the days of the performance), 5 talent competition shows were on the major networks simultaneously.