It … did not suck NEARLY as much as I thought it would. I am stunned. Stunned!
DISCLAIMER: Jekyll and Hyde will never be a great musical. The lyrics aren’t terribly smart, there are only a handful of memorable songs, and the script needs a MAJOR rehaul for it to work from a story standpoint.
The costumes and sets were gorgeous?! I want Lady Beckinsale’s dress super badly, and there’s some great stuff with mirrors. The London set had some Cabinet of Dr. Caligari shit going on, it was nice!
Lots of REALLY fun ideas with lights and projections. It got a bit over the top at times but it brought a lot of excitement to what I usually think of as a pretty dusty, drab looking play.
They actually made Facade pretty cool! It’s never been my favorite song—a heavy-handed statement of the theme of the story, sung by Greek chorus-y thing of street urchins complaining about the hypocrisy of the rich. This version, on the other hand, had the singers start off in simple stark white undergarments and slowly dress themselves up into the fully decked out, super snobby Board of Governors. It became a song about a group of people who know perfectly well how corrupt they are but continue on living that way anyway, and I think it sells the theme a lot better!
They tried to pull a Chicago thing with Bring on the Men (similar to Nowadays, part of the song was a gaudy performance, part of it was a sad, cynical solo). Not sure how well they pulled it off, but A for Effort!
Confrontation is no longer just a guy flailing around center stage yelling at himself! Having listened to the concept album first, I was always horribly disappointed by how the best song in the musical looks incredibly silly on stage, so I was delighted to see this version using the sets and projections to actually make the song dynamic.
Of course um the only trouble with all of this is:
Constantine Maroulis. Cannot. Act. And it is painfully funny. XD; Painful because, with all the changes made, I feel like this revival could actually do well, but Jekyll and Hyde just doesn’t work without a strong Dr. Jekyll. Ahh, it’s such a shame!
Now I happen to like the guy’s singing voice. I know he’s not traditionally what the character sounds like, but I’m happy for a fresh take on it. It has been so long since I have heard a rendition of “Alive” that didn’t make me want to die of embarrassment, and I actually think Constantine pulls off a very good Hyde when he’s singing. The only trouble is, well, when he does anything besides sing. XD (Though it is kind of a treat to see him grapple with even a basic British accent.)
But seriously, can we just recast Jekyll and THEN go on tour? It would fix SO MANY of the things!
(I still love this musical.)