Sunday, October 30, 2022

SOME LIKE IT HOT – London 1992

Cast: Tommy Steele, Billy Boyle, Mandy Perryment, Royce Mills, Veronica Clifford,  Edward Phillips, Steven Osborne, Les Want, Jonathan Owen, Douglas Anderson, David McEwan, Mason Taylor, Christopher Connah, Natasha Haslam, Victoria Lynson, Sharon White, Susan Freebury, Moira Hartley, Kim Harwood, Cathryn Fort-Reynolds, Emma Taylor, Anna David, Stephanie Claire Hicks, Alexandra Moore, Samantha Murray, Stephen Mear

Creative Team: Music by Jule Styne • Lyrics by Bob Merrill • Book by Peter Stone • Based on the Screenplay by Billy Wilder & I. A. L. Diamond suggested by a story by Robert Thoeren • Choreography by Norman Maen • Directed by Tommy Steele 

My Rate: 4 (from 1 to 10)

The Plot: Two male musicians who witness a mob murder are forced to run for their lives and hide from their persecutors by disguising as women and became part of an all-female band. The problem is that one of them falls in love with the band singer and the other one becomes the love interest of a male millionaire.















The Show: The 1959 movie by Billy Wilder is my all-time favorite comedy and one of the best movies in the History of the Cinema with a cast made in heaven: Jack Lemmon, Tony Curtis, Marilyn Monroe e Joe E. Brown. I guess Wilder probably never dreamt that one day his movie would become a stage musical, but it happened when SUGAR open on Broadway, in 1972. With an enjoyable score by Jule Styne and Bob Merrill (the team responsible for FUNNY GIRL), the cast included Robert Morse, Tony Roberts, Elaine Joyce and Cyril Ritchard and the show run of 505 performances.

I guess many of you know that a new musical adaptation of the movie will open soon on Broadway. As for SUGAR, 20 years later after it’s Broadway opening, in March of 1992, a new version renamed SOME LIKE IT HOT opened at the West End and on a London trip in May of that year I managed to get tickets to see it.
















For what I remember and according to what I wrote back then, the problem of this production was also it’s biggest selling point, Tommy Steele. In the role created by Tony Curtis, Steele became the main character of the show, and he didn’t convince me. All smiles, he never stopped being himself and gone was the sexual ambiguity of his character. The fact that he was also the director of the show didn’t help, being that he built it around himself, and was more interested in the musical numbers serving him and not the show. It’s a pity because it was a well-oiled production, with a talented company where Billy Boyle was funny in the Jack Lemmon role and Mandy Perryment had the Marilyn Monroe look.

But what I really enjoyed (and still do) is the score. It may not be the best work of Jule Styne, but there’s a lot of good songs and some new tunes that weren’t part of the SUGAR score. I confess I don’t know if they were written specially for this version, but there’s the funny “Dirty Old Men” and “I’m Naïve”, the delicious “Sugar Shell” and the exciting tittle song, “Some Like It Hot”. While other songs were changed, “What Do You Give to a Man Who Has Everything” for example, being turned into a big production number.

Curiously the thing I best remember is the scene where Steel tells Perryment that “being with a girl does nothing to me”, and both started laughing out of character. That’s live theatre and I love it! As for the show, it had its moments, with a contagious final number.










Thursday, July 7, 2022

BROADWAY SEASON 2021-2022 – THE MUSICALS

Here you’ll find images from all the musicals, new ones and revivals, which opened on Broadway during the 2021-2022; plus the City Center Encores! series. Some became hits, others closed in a few weeks, but I believe all of them are worthy of celebration. 

PS.: To see larger images just click on them.








BROADWAY MUSICALS 2021-2022






























CITY CENTER ENCORES! 2022





Tuesday, January 18, 2022

CAST RECORDINGS OF 2021: A PERSONAL LOOK

It seems the way the world is today, not only because of Covid, has made us grimmer and bluer. Unfortunately, the new musicals aren’t happy ones, and we need more musical comedy to lift our hearts. So, yes, 2021 was a poor year for musicals like me, the ones who love the traditional Broadway sound.

Anyway, as usual, I made my year choices among the, more or less, 68 new related releases and here they are. In order to get an idea, take a look at my 20 FAVORITE SCORES of all time.

 

First, the “Jorge’s Place Awards”; then my “Top Nine” new recordings of 2020, in preference order and not including reissues.

If you like this, take a look at my choices of 20202019, 2018, 201720162015, 20142013 and 2012.







MY TOP NINE RECORDINGS OF 2021



Saturday, January 30, 2021

BROADWAY SEASON 2019-2020 – THE MUSICALS

Broadway’s 2019-2020 Season was probably the strangest and shortest of all seaons). When everything seemed to be going just well, a strange virus was introduced to the world and nothing was the same again. Even so, there were shows that opened on Broadway through that season and a few ones that were only able to have a few previews.

Here you’ll find images from all the musicals, new ones and revivals, which opened on Broadway during the 20117-2018; plus the City Center Encores! and Off-Center series. Some became hits, others closed in a few weeks, but I believe all of them are worthy of celebration. 

PS.: To see larger images just click on them.


BROADWAY MUSICALS 2019-2020







BROADWAY MUSICALS 2019-2020
(these ones only had previews)




CITY CENTER ENCORES! 2020


ENCORES! OFF-CENTER 2019