BWW Reviws: A Split Personality with the National Tour of JEKYLL AND HYDE in Denver
Denver Center Attractions presents the national tour of JEKYLL & HYDE at the Buell Theatre playing now until February 10th. After four thrilling, chilling years on Broadway and multiple world-wide tours, this dark and dangerous love story returns in a stunning new production that includes all the classic songs ("This is the Moment," "A New Life," "Someone Like You") that first grabbed audiences by the throat and transformed JEKYLL & HYDE into a theatrical phenomenon. The musical is based on the acclaimed novella The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson, about a London doctor who accidentally unleashes his evil alternate personality in his quest to cure his father's mental illness.
First I have to say that the show as a whole was good - the sets were fun and inventive and the singing was excellent; however several aspects were not up to par - the energy was low (for example - Bring on the Men lacked energy and fell flat) and some effects your just too over the top (especially during the Confrontation). The show got off to a rather bumpy start and the energy was noticeably low, but after a few songs and Jekyll;s transformation the show found it's rhythm. Act Two picked up on that energy with the energetic Murder and transfixed the audience for the rest of the show. The new alterations to the music were ok and gave the show a hard rock edge, but I noticed that the most appealing and noteworthy songs were the ones that were hardly tampered with (especially the duets). I heard mentioned several times that the show felt more like a rock concert rather than a musical whereas the musical numbers transitioned from song to song while skimming over plot and character development. Also the new effects were good and the sets were visually stunning, but the Confrontation was a little too over the top with the graphics. Highlight numbers included Facade, Take Me As I Am, This is the Moment, Alive!, Once Upon a Dream, In His Eyes, Dangerous Game, A New Life.
I wondered how he would break out of his memorable role in Rock of Ages, but Constantine Maroulis was superb in the title role of Dr. Henry Jekyll/Mr. Hyde. He truly was wonderful in this tortured role and that voice is something to behold. He completely owned This is The Moment and Alive. Teal Wicks dominated the stage as Dr. Jekyll's fiancee, Emma Crew and totally stole the show and my heart. She was in a league of her own with her outstanding and captivating performance that had everyones attention. She showed so much depth in Once Upon a Dream and the Take Me as I Am duet was a crowd favorite. Deborah Cox as Lucy Harris had a lovely voice, but she was a little flat in her acting performance (especially during Bring on the Men and Someone Like You); however she redeemed herself in Act Two with A New Life and In His Eyes brought down the house.
Even with the mentioned shortcomings, I must admit that the audience thoroughly enjoyed it and the singing was superb. JEKYLL AND HYDE is thrilling audiences now until February 10th at the Buell Theatre in the Denver Center. For tickets or more information, contact the Denver Center box office at 303-893-4100 or online at www.denvercenter.org.
Photo Credit: CHRIS BENNION
Constantine Maroulis as Dr. Jekyll