I’m not from USA, I don’t live there. But I watch the Tony’s every year. Since I saw the Newsies presentation I’ve been in love with the show. I heard the OBC as much as I could and watched as many bootlegs as I could find but I lost some of the dialogue for the bad audio and the speech pattern and accent used in the play which I don’t get sometimes. To finally see it on HD was amazing. Newsies live was everything.
I waited five years for that: to see Newsies. And It was totally worth it.
This is why professional stage recordings are important. In my country, theatre is a thing that gets really overlooked and isn’t appreciated. We rarely get new plays. And usually they use theatre-actors-wannabes; they use soap opera actors cause the multimedia mass media company we have owns the only big theatre company we have so it reuses its actors. We barely get a musical that’s well sung or acted or danced. And we rarely get any broadway musical adaptations.
I own a copy of every professional stage recording out there: Rent, Phantom of the Opera 25, Les Mis 10 & 25, Chess in Concert, Shrek the Musical, etc… And I’m definitely gonna own a Newsies Live copy.
One of the more interesting things about the restaged tour is how it
took inspiration from other major works or adaptations on ALW’s show.
Here are some (but not all) possible ways the 25th anniversary concert at the Royal Albert Hall
may have influenced the restaged tour:
Hannibal: The concert’s version lacked several major props, with one of the most notable being the elephant in Hannibal (likely due to difficulties with getting the objects onto the stage). Instead, Piangi merely kneels on the floor (and has a brief struggle with his “sword”). Similarly, the restaged tour did not have an elephant (though they have a cardboard prop of it peeking out), and Piangi undergoes a similar tug-of-war with his own sword.
The red rose: Both the concert and the restaged tour feature Raoul giving Christine a red rose when he greets her in ‘Little Lotte’. The reason for this is likely because of a line in Love Never Dies, in which Christine claims that Raoul always gave her a red rose after her performance. The addition of it in the original is probably meant to make that connection to the sequel.
Il Muto: As with Hannibal, the concert’s version of Il Muto lacked one of its largest props, the bed that Carlotta and Christine sit on during the show. The concert instead had the two sitting on what appears to be a fainting couch, and the restaged tour similarly copies that.
The rooftop: In both the concert and the restaged tour, the rooftop scene has Christine collapsing to the floor in grief and terror, prompting Raoul to come over to her and beginning ‘All I Ask of You’.
Strangling Christine: The concert’s version of the ‘Final Lair’ lacked the portcullis that would normally keep Raoul out, and so the blocking was changed so that the Phantom would strangle Christine, a threat to keep Raoul at bay. The restaged tour mimics this, even down to Christine falling to her knees as she struggles to breathe.
Colm’s concert at National Concert Hall on 13th of February was truly amazing! I had heard many recordings and bootlegs before but hearing him live was truly incredible. Except for the Broadway songs that he usually performs he also sang amazing renditions of “Help Me Make It Through The Night”, “One”, “She’s Leaving Home” and many others (I think that people in the audience should have been clapping along more eagerly during some of the songs). He also sang a beautiful and moving song that he wrote about his mum (I hope he records it one day). Colm finished the concert with hitting C# at the end of “Bring Him Home” even though before the song he said he’s not in the best vocal shape (but judging by the audience’s reaction and what everyone was saying after the concert, Colm was the only person thinking so, and no-one would have guessed he had some health issues). Also, you know how sometimes you watch some video and think that Colm makes funny faces during singing? Well, when you watch him live you don’t think he makes funny faces at all. Everything falls into place and all his gestures and facial expressions make perfect sense and you are in awe of how amazingly he delivers the songs. It’s truly incredible… Anyway, the concert was pure magic and definitely worth it coming to Ireland all the way from Poland just for the gig!
After the show @ivywonderland, myself, our friend and a few other people were waiting at the stagedoor. Colm’s tour manager told us Colm doesn’t feel well and wouldn’t be saying or signing anything, and would go straight to the car (luckily I managed to ask Pat Egan to hand over Colm the gift I had for him, hopefully Colm will like it). We were told, however, that if we want to have our things signed we can give them to him with our postal addresses and Colm will sign them, and we can be sure we’ll get them back as soon as possible. It only proofs that takes his fans seriously (I didn’t want to bother him and Colm with signing the LP I took with me, so Pat Egan kept saying that I don’t trust him… 😂).
When Colm finally came out, it was obvious that he was very tired and kind of sad, and it seemed that his back hurt him, it was really heart-rending to see this. Despite not feeling well he stopped for a while and speaking with a very quiet voice apologised for not being able to talk with us (even though it had been said that he wouldn’t be saying anything!). So, again, it was clear that Colm cares about his fans, he could have just pass by without saying a word. After that he headed to the car. It was really nice to see him smile slightly when he saw through the car window that I have his eponymous album (after his wife pointed at it 😊). I hope that Colm gets better soon.
I feel really lucky to have had the privilege of seeing Colm performing live, I hope he’ll have another Irish tour soon and that I will have another chance to go to Ireland and see him performing live.