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Company Previews Thread- Page 3

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steven22
Broadway Legend
joined:5/19/06
Broadway Legend | Joined: 5/19/06

Company Previews Thread

#51
Posted: 3/2/20 at 11:28pm
I LOVED the production in London last year, including Rosalie. I didn't love it tonight. I'm still thinking about it though. I definitely have to make a return visit after opening.
DebraR
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Company Previews Thread

#52
Posted: 3/2/20 at 11:32pm

Thanks so much!

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YvanEhtNioj
Broadway Star
joined:7/15/18
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Company Previews Thread

#53
Posted: 3/2/20 at 11:34pm
I posted all my thoughts at intermission but just a couple things to add:

I thought her Being Alive was “meh”. I felt the emotions at first but the last note didn’t really pack a punch.

I was very, VERY surprised that everyone was so quick to jump to their feet after Ladies Who Lunch, but not for Not Getting Married. I found that number to be much more moving and entertaining as a whole.

I’m also kind of upset that the red jumpsuit she’s wearing is not the same one that was used in all the promo.

Overall, a beautiful revival I highly recommend.

And thanks for the balloon :)
Instagram: Astoldbyjordan_
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ljay889
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joined:8/4/04
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Company Previews Thread

#54
Posted: 3/2/20 at 11:35pm

This is going to be a smash. It’s completely modern and 2020. There are no traces of a 1970 musical anymore. Sondheim’s music has never sounded better and stronger.
Patti has all new costumes and her fur coat is fabulous. Her Joanne is so fully formed And developed. Her Ladies Who Lunch deserved every second of the standing ovation. She will win every award possible for this performance.

Lenk’s Being Alive is a revelation. Her acting during the number is heartbreaking and inspiring. Her acting throughout the entire piece makes up for any vocal shortcomings she may have, and there aren’t many. Remember: Sondheim prefers actors.

Matt Doyle was great but I think he may still be finding the character. Nikki Renee Daniels basically stole the number as the priest.
All of the boyfriend were wonderful. Bobby Conte’s PJ is completely American, I believe he was British in the London production. Elder nailed all of his scenes and Barcelona.
I didn’t realize Drive a Person Crazy would be so choreographed. It was great.

 
I feel there are some sound issues that need to be improved. Sometimes their voices don’t sound as clear as it should sound on their mics.

The set and lighting design are a feast to the eyes.
I’m still gathering my thoughts and will post more later.

Updated On: 3/3/20 at 11:35 PM
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Sutton Ross
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joined:7/20/13
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Company Previews Thread

#55
Posted: 3/2/20 at 11:39pm

Thanks for all the thoughts, guys! 

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Jordan Catalano
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joined:10/9/05
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Company Previews Thread

#56
Posted: 3/2/20 at 11:54pm
So yeah, like I said before - while I really liked it in London I absolutely loved it here. How odd - a production using time off to perfect the piece - that’s just never done anymore.

As for “Being Alive” - it was a bit odd. I’m not sure (someone will tell me) but did Lenk go up on a line in the song? She seemed lost for a little bit in the first half. But it was the second half of the song that I felt she came “Alive” with it. Chalk that up to it being a first preview and I’m sure by opening night it will be spectacular. And I don’t know why anyone surprised people got to their feet for Patti - its a theatre full of musical theatre lovers who adore Queen Patti and she told them to rise. I could have told you before walking in that she’d get a standing ovation after the song. It probably won’t happen after every show but you’d have to be crazy not to know it would happen tonight.

Other quick thoughts - Simard, Elder & Fitzgerald are the scene stealers here and will absolutely deserve all the praise that will inevitably be heaped upon them.

Just one of the best nights I’ve had at the theatre in years, really. And I think that’s saying something.
barcelona20
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joined:1/19/08
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#57
Posted: 3/2/20 at 11:54pm
I know Sondheim prefers actors but it's going to be really hard to erase the power of Raul when it comes to Being Alive.
SouthernCakes
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joined:7/29/19
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#58
Posted: 3/2/20 at 11:57pm
Jordan what didn’t you like about it in London?

Also, how do you think the mezz partial view would be?
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Jordan Catalano
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#59
Posted: 3/3/20 at 12:04am

My issues with it in London were that the gender swapping worked about 70% of the time and the parts that didn't work came off as kind of half-baked. I can’t remember specifics but aspects of the rewrites just didn’t work. They do now. I wish I could be more scene specific but at this minute i can’t.

Updated On: 3/3/20 at 12:04 AM
SouthernCakes
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joined:7/29/19
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#60
Posted: 3/3/20 at 12:18am
All good! Going tomorrow so I’ll take a vague response! Don’t want to ruin the experience!
Zion24
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joined:3/27/19
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#61
Posted: 3/3/20 at 12:18am

barcelona20 said: "I know Sondheim prefers actors but it's going to be really hard to erase the power of Raul when it comes to Being Alive."

have friends in this cast, look fwd to seeing it, hopeful Lenk and LuPone do more than I predict them to, think Marianne Elliott is a genius, etc. etc. but i, too, will have a hard time hearing Being Alive and not thinking of Raul He tore open the earth with that song back in the day.

Surprised people here seem to think its going to be impossible to get tickets. I predict it wins a bunch of awards and accolades, the NY theater crowd will eat it up--and then, alot like Once On This Island and Oklahoma!, it will fade. 

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Synecdoche2
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#62
Posted: 3/3/20 at 12:21am

A superb production of an oft-mishandled show. I expect many rave reviews and awards to come. Lenk is one of our great musical performers.

Something I think this production really gets right that a lot of productions of Company don't is that the show is fundamentally a musical comedy, and while yes it's oftentimes cynical, it's also ultimately optimistic and upbeat. This production was very, very funny (glaring at you, Raúl Esparza) and left you feeling lighter than air, which is absolutely right.

Bravo to all involved!

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KitKatBoy24
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#63
Posted: 3/3/20 at 12:24am

I was there tonight and I'm happy to report that it is a brilliant production (though I do have one major critique that I'll get to).

Standouts were Patti LuPone (of course) and she deserved that Standing Ovation.  Jen Simard was also absolutely hilarious and stole her scene.  Perhaps we'll see two Supporting Actress nominations from this show if shes lucky.  Matt Doyle nailed "Not Getting Married" and his scene.  He was really incredible.  Claybourne Elder also did really well with his scenes.  Really the cast is very solid.

The direction is brilliant.  These scenes and songs are staged so well with clear ideas and reasons to tell Company again in 2020.  She's done a really remarkable job with the show.  I really loved how they did Another Hundred People and Not Getting Married. Marianne has outdone herself.

The design is also superb.  There were times that I found the lighting on actors to be odd and maybe that'll be fixed during previews.  The set design is really great and enhances the story telling that Marianne has gone for. 

Orchestrations were lovely.  It was so nice to hear that music live. 

I must say that I am surprised to hear so many people loved Katrina Lenk tonight.  I was very excited about her and I was unfortunately very disappointed with her performance tonight.  I felt like her acting left a lot to be desired (act two was better).  I had a great orchestra seat and still didn't think she was connecting well with the show. However, this could all improve during previews. Her vocals also need a lot of work.  She really didn't sound great.  The songs seem too high for her and I found myself wishing they'd lower the keys.  Her break between her chest voice and her higher notes is very abrupt and often took me out of the moment.  I found myself worried during Being Alive instead of actually listening to her and connecting with her story.  Lower the keys.  I don't need her to sing high - I need her to sing well.

Everything else about this production is absolutely phenomenal, but I found myself wishing Katrina Lenk had not been cast.

"In here, life is beautiful"
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ljay889
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#64
Posted: 3/3/20 at 12:27am

Lenk’s Being Alive is performed more in the vein of Adrian Lester. If you haven’t seen his performance, check it out on YouTube. Very strong acting choices that for me are more important than a perfect vocal. For what it’s worth, her vocals are better than Boyd Gaines and NPH.
 

Again, I am really satisfied with the sound of the orchestra. It sounds full and doesn’t have the tinniness heard on the London recording. The tempos are so improved and the score has much more energy than what is heard on that recording.  The opening drum fill is no longer played during the first overture of “Bobbies.” While it was never meant to be part of the show, some productions have added it because of the original cast recording. The London production did use it after the voicemail opening.

Sondheim has again changed some lyrics. PJ now sings “look I’ll message you tomorrow or I’ll call you and explain.” Rather than “text you in the morning” as in the London production.
For those who saw it in London, were smart phones also a major part of that production? They’re basically another character here.

Also, 

 
Click Here To Toggle Spoiler Content

“Marry Me A Little”/act one ends with Bobbie watching her party with a Bobbie double. I’m assuming this wasn’t in the London production? Chris Harper said there was a new moment at the end of act one, and I’m thinking this is it.

Also, was Tock Tock the same in London with all of the women playing various versions of Married Bobbie? Patti was particularly hilarious in this number. 

Also, in the act two Peter And Susan scene, I was surprised they didn’t use PJ/Marta. I’m assuming Marta’s addition was from of the revised productions. 
It’s too bad because it would’ve been nice to have seen Bobby Conte in another scene. 
 

I really think this production could be a major hit. Its going to appeal to so many different audiences as introduce many people to Sondheim. 

Updated On: 3/3/20 at 12:27 AM
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Jordan Catalano
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#65
Posted: 3/3/20 at 12:35am
Was anyone else HOT in that theatre tonight? I swear the AC wasn’t working.
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ljay889
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#66
Posted: 3/3/20 at 12:39am
It was uncomfortably hot. Especially for a evening that ran long with that extended intermission.
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YvanEhtNioj
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joined:7/15/18
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#67
Posted: 3/3/20 at 12:40am

Jordan Catalano said: "And I don’t know why anyone surprised people got to their feet for Patti - its a theatre full of musical theatre lovers who adore Queen Patti and she told them to rise. I could have told you before walking in that she’d get a standing ovation after the song. It probably won’t happen after every show but you’d have to be crazy not to know it would happen tonight.
. "
 

I expected her to get a standing ovation no matter what, But I just felt that “not getting married” was more of a showstopper than her performance personally. 

 

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Updated On: 3/3/20 at 12:40 AM
Hamilfan2
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joined:12/28/15
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Company Previews Thread

#68
Posted: 3/3/20 at 12:51am
Going to echo a lot of thoughts posted on here:

Katrina Lenk feels miscast and while she has a lovely voice it lacks any power to make a true impact. Especially when everyone else in this production is firing on all cylinders, she feels noticeably weaker than everyone else.

The highlight for me was Not Getting Married, the staging was absolutely hilarious and Matt Doyle gives an excellent performance.

Patti LuPone was Patti LuPone and I absolutely ate it up. In my opinion a well deserved standing ovation at Ladies who Lunch.

Another standout in the cast was Jenn Simard, who once again manages to squeeze every comedic drop out of her role. Speaking of comedy I think this might be the funniest production of Company, I feel like they really went all in on the humor (which some productions *cough* John Doyle revival *cough* really miss) and all of the attempts at humor really land.

Marrianne Elliott is a genius and her work on this production is extraordinary. She managed to make this feel wholly modern and it felt like a show written in 2020. It’s not a perfect production, but overall it really really worked for me.

One thing I haven’t seen anyone mention is that I’m pretty sure in this production Bobbie is bisexual, which I found interesting given Sondheim’s insistence that Bobby/Bobbie be straight. All of her love interests are men, but we do see her “swipe right” and flirt with women during “Another Hundred People.” The tiniest of nods, and by no means explicit, but it’s definitely there.
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YvanEhtNioj
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joined:7/15/18
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#69
Posted: 3/3/20 at 12:58am
I did notice the bisexuality in Another Hundred People, too. I thought that was very cute when she swiped yes on the girl.

The more I think of that number, the more I realize how amazing it is
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fosseboi008
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joined:5/3/09
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#70
Posted: 3/3/20 at 12:59am

Jennifer Simard and Patti were everything.Both should be recognized.
I found the men to be disappointing. It’s early on but I just felt underwhelmed by Doyle and Elder. Lenk grew and grew on me. Marianne’s direction is the star. Brilliant direction!!!

Updated On: 3/3/20 at 12:59 AM
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ljay889
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joined:8/4/04
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#71
Posted: 3/3/20 at 1:06am
I think there are several performances that will grow throughout this preview period, and that includes Lenk’s performance. This was only their second full run through.
Patti’s Joanne feels like the most fully developed performance and character in the production and that’s because she’s been playing this role for years. I fully expected her to walk away with the show tonight. Jen Simard’s performance was one of the biggest delights tonight, she will get plenty of recognition for this.
I expect Lenk, Doyle, and Elder to be fully firing on all cylinders by opening night, they are giving great performances, and I think they’ll only go up from here.
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IdinaBellFoster
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#72
Posted: 3/3/20 at 1:14am
Love hearing all this praise!! I won’t be able to see it until the Summer. Also happy to hear they made some changes to the keys/orchestrations from the London production. I couldn’t hear Lenk using those Rosalie Craig keys.
"Oh look at the time, three more intelligent plays just closed and THE ADDAMS FAMILY made another million dollars" -Jackie Hoffman, Broadway.com Audience Awards
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qolbinau
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joined:6/29/08
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#73
Posted: 3/3/20 at 2:54am

"For those who saw it in London, were smart phones also a major part of that production? They’re basically another character here."

I don't remember them being a major part of the production. There were some references to swiping in Apps but I don't remember a physical phone just the swiping motion.

"“Marry Me A Little”/act one ends with Bobbie watching her party with a Bobbie double. I’m assuming this wasn’t in the London production? Chris Harper said there was a new moment at the end of act one, and I’m thinking this is it."

It was definitely in the London production, it's not new.

"Also, was Tock Tock the same in London with all of the women playing various versions of Married Bobbie? Patti was particularly hilarious in this number. "

In London, yes all the women played versions of Bobbie with wigs on - showing them suffering either baby or domestic abuse. It actually wasn't particularly funny in London and I don't think Patti was part of the scene - so it sounds like something has changed.

 

"Rose in Gypsy was like going through therapy for me. Playing Rose helped me put a lot of emotions to bed. There was so much lacking in Rose and that's why she had to prove herself through her children. [interviewer]In ways that reminded you of your mom?[/interviewer]. Let's just say the role was very interesting for me. That one was the most interesting [I've ever played]" - Bernadette Peters (2018)
Dolly80
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#74
Posted: 3/3/20 at 3:04am
First previews always get a hysterical reaction. Everyone is very pleased with themselves for being there ‘first’.

Have to say my fears about Lenks casting seem well founded. She doesn’t have the voice to deliver her big song. However, the character (in this production) anyway , has absolutely nothing to do. She’s the least interesting person on stage and just reacts to everyone. Not even the greatest actress could make much of it.

Has the awful Another Hundred People number been restated? In London it was on the subway with terrible choreography and it was awful.
hearthemsing22
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joined:2/14/20
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#75
Posted: 3/3/20 at 5:48am
Concerning mezzanine seating!!!

The front side mezz is not bad at all, but you do miss a couple of things (small, but just saying) when characters step over there. I’d say front center mezz would be your best bet! I didn’t miss a lot, most of the action is center, but you still missed a few small things.