Sunday, August 25, 2013

Wicked in Boston!

I had the pleasure of seeing Wicked in Boston this evening. I have had the soundtrack for this show since 2004. I know all the songs, the entire story and yes I have watched tons of videos on YouTube. Nothing compares to live on stage. It's magical.

Favorite songs of the night: Popular, Defying Gravity, No Good Deed and For Good.

Alison Luff
Tonight starred Alison Luff as Elphaba and Sarah Schenkkan as Glinda. Schenkkan is the understudy but you'd never know it. She was amazing. Both women were pitch perfect and gave outstanding performances.

According to Schenkkan's Facebook page these shows in Boston will be her last. Too bad. I know, however that she won't be short on future projects.

Kim Zimmer
John Davidson
Blasts from the past were John Davidson playing the Wizard and Kim Zimmer (was Reva on Guiding Light) as Madame Morrible. I would never have recognized Zimmer under that wig and make-up. On the other hand Davidson looked the same, simply older. I thought he did a great job and even noticed him coping the voice from the Wizard in the Wizard of Oz.

Clifton Davis
Clifton Davis, 40 year veteran of stage screen and television, starred as Dr. Dillamond and Curt Hanson was Fiyero.

One of the great things I noticed was the amount of children in the theater. I think that's such a fantastic thing, to expose a child to the theater at a young age, and Wicked helps do that.
Curt Hanson

The themes that run through this show are wonderful for young girls. Don Aucoin from the Boston Globe wrote: "For the past decade, with wit and heart and a boatload of gorgeous tunes, Wicked has celebrated the power of female friendship. While giving full weight to the complexity of the path girls have to navigate, the show has affirmed the importance of standing up to groupthink, otherwise known as peer pressure."

It's true. Seeing the tweens seated all around me, I thought how wonderful that they'll be getting the messages that are in Wicked: A strong female friendship, putting your own opinion of yourself before others opinions of you, staying true to your moral compass, finding what makes you happy.

Composer Stephen Schwartz had this to say in an interview with the Boston Globe, "I think that the sort of empowerment of Elphaba is very inspiring. And it’s more than just to girls. I get all these e-mails from young gay male teens, and from older women, women who are in bad marriages and are affected by ‘Defying Gravity.’

“She starts as an outcast girl who wants nothing more than to fit in, and the whole first act she pursues that opportunity,’’ Schwartz noted. “But when it’s finally within her grasp, in order to take that opportunity it means selling her soul. And she won’t do it.

“While she is empowered, it’s not like ‘The Bad News Bears’ and she wins the championship and lives happily ever after. It’s very bittersweet,’’ observed Schwartz. “It’s funny to say about a green witch in ‘The Wizard of Oz,’ but there’s something realistic about how her power worked out for her. The fact that it’s not an unmitigated triumph feels real to people.

“Her courage in giving up her chance to fit in in order to stay true to what she believes is inspiring,’’ he added. “And the friendship between those two [Elphaba and Glinda] is also complicated and nuanced. That relationship speaks to girls and women.’’

I couldn't have said it better myself.

It was a wonderful evening at the theater. If you haven't seen Wicked yet, make sure you do. You won't regret it.

Sarah Schenkkan
Alison Luff and company

Alison Luff and Jenn Gambatese

Alison Luff

  Photos: and

No comments:

Post a Comment