Ever seen an ensemble in The Last 5 Years?

gavrochegirl
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BobbyBubby
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I avoided this production. Sadly, it was the Seattle premiere.
RentBoy86
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I don't think its an ensemble - as there is no "ensemble" singing in the show. I think its more like there are different couples - each Jamie / Catherine. Interesting idea. I wonder how it panned out on stage though.
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Liz_Bennet
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I heard that the two-man I Am My Own Wife in Philadelphia was a bit of a disaster. Not to discourage creative directing, but this kind of thing often seems to turn out badly.
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SirLiir
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Interesting idea but overall a bad one. Having more than one Jamie and Cathy is confusing and detracts from the emotional meaning. I still would have been interested in seeing it though.
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Ourtime992
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I don't think the triple casting is a problem, necessarily, but the ensemble is just sort of pointless. It looks like they watch the wedding and one girl is in the bed with Jamie, but really, why even have them there for that?
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Katurian2
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I actually saw a production of this in Colorado. It has a different actress/actor play Jamie/Kathy for each scene. It was not confusing in the least, but I still think it would have been much better if they kept with one couple.
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SirLiir
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Well Kat, that is interesting to hear. The changing from one actor to another was not jarring to you? Did you feel if the changes effected the emotional gravity?
Wicked_fan
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I'm soooo utterly confused...

so it was a different person each time? or were all three on at once...

What's going on?

I always figured that one of the greatness' of the Last 5 Years is the simplicity that is only 2 people on stage...

Why do that? I mean I guess I can understand if they had each couple go on different nights...but not the same night...

ooooh confusion...
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Dirty Rotten Scoundrel
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It's not the triple casting..there is an ensemble..lol. Along with the triple casting..there are like 6 ensemble members who are at the wedding, and in bed with Jamie during Nobody Needs to Know. In the off-Broadway version, Jamie is getting dressed and is alone..so this is all different and weird..but there are essentially characters other than Jamie and Cathy on stage during the show...stupid idea IMO.

The casts alternated I assume they didn't switch Jamie's and Cathy's..different days meant differect actors/actresses lol.
TheatreMonkey
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Ehhhh...

I agree it's an interesting concite, but looks pretty bad in realization. That is if I understand correctly from the pictures and lack of explanination!

Why mess with perfection?!

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Dirty Rotten Scoundrel
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I agree with the perfection comment 100%, Sam!
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(Way back up) SirLiir: No, not especially. THe music itself is so powerful and the story holds itself up (in my opinion). I suppose if you weren't as into the story, it would have been distracting, but I loved it.
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SirLiir
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Thanks for the reply. I am a huge L5Y fan and I actually would have made an effort to see this if it played over here. I think it could work but only if the ensemble is equally talented.
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A local high school is doing SONGS FOR A NEW WORLD with a cast of 25 - a different soloist on every song.

Never mind that the material is totally inappropriate for high school kids.
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I saw the Seattle production that gavrochegirl was talking about. Really the ensemble parts didn't affect the show at all. There were 3 casts, so they switched off shows, and when the other 4 people weren't performing the show, they had tiny...TINY, ensemble bits. Yes, they were at the wedding, like best men/bride's maids. They didn't say anything, they didn't really move. They were in very few scenes, and to me personally it made no difference. It even added a little something when an actual "pair of breasts walks by and smiles at you". The only thing about the production that annoyed me was that the two were together during the Shmuel song, which took away the impact of them being on stage together during The Next Ten Minutes.
Dirty Rotten Scoundrel
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By together do you mean like, together onstage, or together as in married? Because in the off-Broadway version they were together during that, too...he's telling the story to Cathy, and she's there, lol.
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cathywellerstein
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The idea of an ensemble bothers me.

The whole point of having exclusively two actors is to show how focused the story is on them. Every scene is like a sort of flashback told from the perspective of who ever is singing the song. By not putting others on stage, it shows how specific their own world is. It never even involved anyone else. Though they talk about other people, those people don't get faces or personalities other than how they are described by either Cathy or Jamie. Because on the whole, they don't matter. It's all about Cathy and Jamie. IMO.

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gumbo2
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Haha, oh really? I didn't know that. No they weren't married, they were together. I didn't know the off-B'way was like that. I was under the impression the only time they really interact is when the stories cross during the wedding. Interesting.
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children&art
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it's such a strong show, why mess it up with some goofy "concept"?

notice how each jamie has a different flavor of doritos, funny.

saw a production here in dallas and the jamie was naked during "no one needs to know" - VERY HOT and sad at the same time.
Don't f*ck with me fellas. This ain't my first time at the rodeo.
Updated On: 1/5/06 at 11:58 PM
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eslgr8
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When you say naked, how much did he show to the audience? Please be specific, though polite. :)
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children&art
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"When you say naked, how much did he show to the audience? Please be specific, though polite. :)"

Well, to be specific and polite - he showed everything. It was a small-ish thrust stage theatre and Kathy was on one side and he was on the other for practically the whole show. For the song he started out on a mattress covered by a sheet, he's singing to the girl he's having an affair with. And as the song progressed he pulls the sheet away and kneels in the middle of the mattress so everything was on display. Like I said it was very sexy (because I knew the actor playing Jamie) but he managed to strike the right chord of melancholy and emotion for the song while being naked.
Don't f*ck with me fellas. This ain't my first time at the rodeo.
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I this production in Seattle, the one the link is to, there was an ensemble. They didn't sing, but they played party guests, etc. They triple cast the show, with a different couple each night. THe couples not performing the songs, simply became some sort of stupid ensemble.
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Tricky Joe
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WHY add an ensemble? How useless. And what a thankless role for those poor actors. Something for the resume, I guess. But what a dumb concept.
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children&art
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would it be bad or illegal to make jamie a woman? how much trouble could a theatre get into by doing that? or for that matter making the man and woman in "marry me a little" into two men?
Don't f*ck with me fellas. This ain't my first time at the rodeo.