Page: 1

Bounce Thoughts

Mister Matt Profile PhotoMister Matt Profile Photo
Mister Matt
Broadway Legend
joined:5/17/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/17/03
Bounce Thoughts#0
Posted: 1/11/04 at 5:07pm
I was just thinking about the show. I saw the premiere at the Goodman in Chicago and was seriously underwhelmed and I was wondering why. For the most part, I just didn't care about the brothers or what happened to them. The show was completely anticlimactic and lacking in warmth which probably accounted for my reaction to the brothers.

First of all, I think Prince's "vaudeville" staging, while clever in a few places, really needs to go. The second act was much more interesting as it abandonded the gimmicky set pieces.

The role of the mother could be beefed up a bit. Her favoritism was obvious and could be played on much more. I think she had a huge influence on the decisions each of the boys made. I would like to see more exploration of her "love" for each of the sons and why she always turned a blind eye to McGillis' character.

The rivalry between the brothers over the girl in the first act could be elevated as well illustrating the competitiveness of the two. This could also contrast (musically?) the homosexual turn of Kind's character in the second act.

The only point in the show where I was really interested in the story was the Boca Raton venture. I wanted to know why it failed, but the show never really explained it. It was the most impressive scene visually in the show, but the bland score did not support the staging. It comes to a sudden halt when the venture fails, causing the brothers to once again be bankrupt, but it happens in the staging, but not in the book. I think much of the first act could be cut (especially the opening scene) and some of the second to be shifted to the first. Let Boca Raton dominate the second act as well as the romantic relationships and build the destruction of the venture and the relationships together as the climax of the show. Heighten the emotions of the characters; the girl that marries and then leaves and then reappears, the male lover that also leaves, the brothers' reconciliation and inevitable severence. The were so few moments in which the characters really seemed to feel anything. Only Kind's character and his lover had songs that really seemed to express genuine emotion.

I would like to see Sondheim's newest work succeed, but the way it is, I don't think anyone other than hardcore Sondheim fans will be motivated to see it.

Anyone else see the show that may have some thoughts?
"What can you expect from a bunch of seitan worshippers?" - Reginald Tresilian
tpdc
Broadway Star
joined:5/30/03
Broadway Star
joined:
5/30/03
re: Bounce Thoughts#1
Posted: 1/11/04 at 6:50pm
I saw BOUNCE in DC and while I admit it needs work, quite enjoyed it. I thought there was a lot of warmth in the show and I cared about all the characters except for McGillin and the father but that could have been due to the performers. I agree that act two was stronger and Prince's concept hurt the power of the show. I liked the score a lot and there are several strong numbers in the first act (Opportunity, Next To You, Addison's Trip and Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me)in addition to the Addison/Hollis numbers in the second act.

Kind's last performance in the role was superb and I think the way he played it that night made the whole show clear. In his final confrontation with Hollis, he hurts Hollis when he tells him that he had every thing handed to him but he and Willie, scoundrel that he is, had to fight for everything they got and lost. That's what Weidman always claimed the show was about--two brothers and how their success and failures illustrated opportunity and opportunism in America at that time. The moments that tied the story to theme were the strongest. And more of them came in the second act. I think Prince was right to add Nellie but not just for the love interest. As Hollis represents the rich who have it "easy" and Addie and Willie the "have-nots" who desire it and win it and lose it time and again, Nellie represents someone who doesn't have anything, seizes the opportunity and makes it work. Thanks for bringin this up!
jesseeinstein
Broadway Star
joined:11/9/03
Broadway Star
joined:
11/9/03
re: re: Bounce Thoughts#2
Posted: 1/11/04 at 7:45pm
When I saw it, I was really hyped because while I didn't know too much about the show, I knew it was Sondheim and I was seeing it for free! I saw it in D.C. and I thought that while there were some songs that really stuck in my head, the majority of the musical didn't really catch my interest. I'll probably still get the cast recording, but I don't know if I would really want to see it again. It definately felt like it was still in it's early stages.
bwaybaby2 Profile Photobwaybaby2 Profile Photo
bwaybaby2
Swing
joined:8/9/03
Swing
joined:
8/9/03
re: re: re: Bounce Thoughts#3
Posted: 1/11/04 at 8:50pm
I too saw Bounce in DC, and while there were parts of it that I enjoyed, I thought it was still in the early stages of development. I agree with Mister Matt regarding Mama Mizner's character. Also, I couldn't sympathize with Willie at all. In my opinion, if you haven't invested any emotions in a character, then who really cares what happens to them?

Other thoughts: The bedroom sequence in Act I was entirely too long and almost too cluttered for my taste. In comparison to Act I, Act II was quite short, and the show just sort of ended. After all of the attempts to make money were showcased in great detail, there was a sudden failure in Boca Raton, and everything fell apart for Addison and Willie in a matter of seconds.

I truly enjoyed Richard Kind's performance; he was excellent. I also enjoyed Gavin Creel as Hollis. One thing I did notice was the audience did not catch on to Hollis and Addison's relationship as lovers until the kiss. I think there needed to be something more written into the script about their relationship to develop it.
"I believe that my life's gonna see the love I give returned to me."--John Mayer
WhatDoINeedWithLove?
Broadway Legend
joined:9/11/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
9/11/03
re: re: re: re: Bounce Thoughts#4
Posted: 1/11/04 at 10:43pm
Gavin Creel...Enough said! :)
broadwayguy2
Broadway Legend
joined:5/18/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/18/03
re: re: re: re: re: Bounce Thoughts#5
Posted: 1/11/04 at 10:51pm
**fans self at mention of Gavinator
CJR Profile PhotoCJR Profile Photo
CJR
Broadway Legend
joined:5/14/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/14/03
re: re: re: re: re: re: Bounce Thoughts#6
Posted: 1/11/04 at 10:54pm
I also saw Bounce in DC at the end of October.... I was incredibly disappointed in the show. If it weren't for Michele Pawk, I would have left at intermission
"You're every gay man's wet dream!" ~ MA

If in Heaven you don't excel, you can always party down in hell...

MasterLcZ Profile PhotoMasterLcZ Profile Photo
MasterLcZ
Broadway Legend
joined:5/12/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/12/03
M.Matt, how were the performances ?Did Kind make a good impression on you?
"Christ, Bette Davis?!?!"
Mister Matt Profile PhotoMister Matt Profile Photo
Mister Matt
Broadway Legend
joined:5/17/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/17/03
Kind was ok, but the material wasn't good enough for me to think his performace was anything outstanding. He was simply pathetic throughout. Pawk and Creel made the most out of the little they had. They were the only standouts for me. McGillis was horribly miscast and just not believable. Powell just wasn't strong enough to handle the music. She was charming, but not a good choice.
"What can you expect from a bunch of seitan worshippers?" - Reginald Tresilian