I attended the final performance of The Visit this afternoon and what a special afternoon it was, thanks in part to something unexpected: Chita was sick. Her voice was hoarse and she basically had lost any ability to sing. She could speak, but barely could sustain a pitch. Miraculously (and only Chita could pull this off) it may have been one of her best performances of the run. She Robert Preston-ed her way through each number so brilliantly and with so much emotion; there was no hope of making it through Love and Love Alone with a dry eye. She IS unkillable, unstoppable and imperious to anything that would dare try to hold her down. She is the definition of a treasure of theater.
This show was one of the highlights of the season for me- well a highlight of the past several seasons to be honest. I loved the production, the score, the book, the cast, the direction. It deserved a better fate, but I applaud the producers for bringing it to Broadway and having the opportunity to see it a few times before it slips away into the ether.
Wow, I wish I could have been there. I am very grateful to have been at the first preview and opening night. A total of 6 times including Williamstown. Such a special and unforgettable production that I think will be remembered for years. Can't wait for the cast recording!
"She Robert Preston-ed her way through each number so brilliantly and with so much emotion"
I saw The Visit for the first time last night, and it took me a while to pick up on the fact that her speak-singing wasn't the norm. It worked so brilliantly.
She spoke/sang through most of the opening night performance as well. I was actually surprised to hear her out and out sing as much as she did on the Tonys. Her performance was brilliant, even if she did speak/sing.
ljay, knowing how much you loved this show, I wish you could have been there too. Chita received a standing ovation upon her entrance and then another after Love and Love Alone that had her wiping away tears.
People were throwing yellow roses on the stage during the curtain call and Tom Kirdahy gave a nice curtain speech, breaking down a little when praising Chita.
All in all a rapturous afternoon.
Saw it twice. A magical performance from Chita both times. A gorgeous score. As I've said before, it is not a perfect show, but it is a GREAT show. For me, that's all that matters.
I'm sorry I missed the closing performance. Looking forward to the cast album!
I will forever be sad that I missed this production.
"I will forever be sad that I missed this production."
I was able to see this 6 times. I hate that a show like this can't find an audience on broadway anymore.
Next time you hear a Broadway performer can only do 6 performances a week & needs an alternate to do matinees remember Chita & how @ 82 she gutted thru a show when she had no business being on stage.
True to that!
It truly was an amazing show. So unique. So mesmerizing.
And I also just loved the score. It was made even that much more provocative and haunting by the wonderful performances.
Chita is simply it, and she will always be deserving of a home on Broadway. And I thought The Visit was a great place for her to reside for some time.
Sorry to see it closing.
I second Jordan's comment.
I went into this show not knowing anything about it and it turned out to be one of my favorite shows of the past year. I rarely leave a musical with a song stuck in my head but Ive been humming some of the songs from this show still and I saw it over a month ago. It's a shame it couldn't last longer.
"I hate that a show like this can't find an audience on broadway anymore. "
I too agree with Jordan!
great show - sad it couldn't be around longer. I'm thankful to all who pushed through and brought this to Broadway. I've enjoyed watching it grow over the years.
For those who were there - did they give any kind of shout out to Roger Rees?
"I was able to see this 6 times. I hate that a show like this can't find an audience on broadway anymore. "
Chita = pure class and impeccable talent.
Broadway NEEDS this show.
Sorry I missed the last show but I saw it enough times to be satisfied.
It's great and daring piece of musical theater.
Thank goodness there will be a cat recording!
I absolutely LOVE the few songs I have heard from the cast recording. Really looking forward to the complete recording to be released!
They did mention Rees during the curtain speech and he received a nice round of applause.
Another thing that Kirdahy mentioned was that the entire cast had agreed to work for a fraction of what they normally make- "for wages their agents begged them not to accept!" They were all there out of love for the piece, and the beam on Mary Beth Peil's face confirmed every word.
It is a beautiful show. For what it's worth, when I saw it, Rivera sang every note. I don't think she has to, frankly, as the role sits comfortably on her voice in that quasi-parlando style. But whatever her vocal limitations, I don't think it has to do with 8 shows vs. 6. This isn't a vocally demanding role. She may just be suffering from end of spring allergies, like everyone I know, and can't take medications that would alter her performance energy. Many actors eschew those options because they also dry up the voice and make them groggy. Rivera stayed at the top of her game, didn't miss a performance. And it's one for the ages.
To think of the dreck currently thriving on Broadway now & in the future (Frozen) it boggles the mind that this did not succeed.
Never underestimate the ignorance of the American people is I think the way it goes. Is it any wonder I have soured on Broadway.
I 100% agree.
"To think of the dreck currently thriving on Broadway now & in the future (Frozen) it boggles the mind that this did not succeed. Never underestimate the ignorance of the American people is I think the way it goes. Is it any wonder I have soured on Broadway."
Agree - well said.
There is absolutely nothing mind-boggling about the idea that this particular piece was not a commercial success or have mass appeal with the general public.
True enough but no one ever thought it would go this quickly. We did not expect a Cabaret type of run but for possibly Chita's last appearance & K/E last score plus acceptable reviews it deserved a much longer run
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