Sunday, March 16, 2008


Last Saturday night, I attended the first preview performance the new Broadway musical CRY-BABY, taking advantage of the special preview price of $54 for orchestra tickets (until April 23rd). $54 is for "1954" in Baltimore, the setting. The musical is based on the social satire movie of the same name starring Johnny Depp and directed by John Waters.

Published synopsis of the show:
"Baltimore, 1954. Everyone likes Ike, nobody likes communism and Wade “Cry-Baby” Walker is the coolest boy in town. He's a bad boy with a good cause — truth, justice and the pursuit of rock 'n' roll. When he falls for a good girl who wants to be bad, her charm-school world of bobby sox and barbershop quartets will never be the same. Wayward youth, juvenile delinquents, sexual repression, cool music, dirty lyrics, bizarre rejects…Finally, the '50s come to life!"

Although I felt that overall the characters somehow did not connect with the audience, I still enjoyed this hilarious musical adaptation. Fine performances were delivered by James Snyder as Cry-Baby and Elizabeth Stanley as his love interest. Tony Award winner Harriet Harris plays Mrs. Vernon-Williams. But the show’s individual showstoppers are Alli Mauzey as psychotic Lenora who is obsessed with Cry-Baby, and Chester Gregory II who plays Dupree. Rob Ashford’s superb choreography especially the number that utilized license plates in the prison break scene is memorable. Mark Brokaw directs this musical which features libretto by Mark O'Donnell and Thomas Meehan with music by David Javerbaum and Adam Schlesinger. Other credits: Scott Pask (Scenic Design); Catherine Zuber (Costume Design); Howell Binkley (Lighting Design); Peter Hylenski (Sound Design); Lynne Shankel (Music Direction, Incidental Music, Arrangements); Christopher Jahnke (Orchestrations); David Chase (Dance Arranger).

"Cry-Baby" plays the Marquis Theatre at 1535 Broadway, between 45th and 46th Streets, where it opens on April 24.

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