rag theater

Newsies Live, a review of sorts

Originally posted by whenyourfallingintheforest

So it’s looking like the reply I wrote up last night for @party-with-books on mobile, during a wifi issue, is just not going to ever post and is lost to the netherworld, which is unfortunate because, even if nothing I said was coherent, I wrote it while everything was still fresh and I was still on the most beautiful ecstasy high - the kind you can’t get arrested for. But I’m gonna try to do the play justice here, and using a lot of gifs, XD so we shall see.


Guys. Guys. Guuuuyyysssss. I just can’t. Let me start by saying I have never seen a stage production of Newsies. I’ve been listening to the soundtrack for months, but for a lot of the bits the stage show has added or edited from the original film’s story, I had absolutely zero context for, and the soundtrack is sadly missing like a crap ton of reprises. Therefore, if you care about spoilers, I suggest you stop reading this and wait for the dvd to come out or something, because I don’t feel like holding anything back.

After that note, where the heck do I even begin? The production itself. And by that, I don’t just mean the sets and the cast and the lighting and the camera. Nah, primarily at this point, I mean Spectacle.

I’ve now seen a good number of shows, in various formats, but none of them have been so energetic, alive, and overwhelming. The dancing is superb. I know for the filming they pulled out all the stops, with bigger leaps, more twirls, and a larger number of Newsies on stage, and let me tell you, IT WAS WORTH IT. A stage filled with forty or more singing, tap-dancing, leaping Newsies is a sight to behold.

I mean, there was this:

Originally posted by peregrintoook

This is Ryan Steele, as Specs, doing the full-out twirl. Our Specs was played by the amazing Jordan Samuels, but it’s a different cast member entirely who performs this move, and we get a sky high view of the spin, which I’m pretty sure is faster and longer, and the entire theater gasped and applauded.

There were hundreds and hundreds of flips, spins, cartwheels, splits, jumps, tricks, and moves I cannot name. There was tap dancing on tables. I HAVE NEVER SEEN A DANCING TROUPE OF THIS LEVEL OF EXCELLENCE IN SUCH AN EXTRAVAGANT SHOWING EVER.

Originally posted by pontmarius

The set and staging was absolutely dynamite, and it will never cease to astound me how theatrical productions can amass an entire world on a few hundred feet of stage.

Near the end of “Once and For All” the Newsies completely drop out on the vocals and then come roaring back in, and again, my entire theater gasped in awe and delight, and I was crying and covered in goosebumps.

As for Jack…

Originally posted by theatregraphics

Jeremy Jordan is the definitive Jack Kelly for me, okay?

Originally posted by coreymcott

If you’re a die hard Christian Bale or Corey Cott fan or anyone else, I’m sorry, but it’s true. There will never be another player who so fully encompasses that role for me. His Jack is so intense and passionate the. entire. time. Every single thing he says and does. The only moments we see him physically relax at all are when he’s with Crutchie (and we’re too busy crying to notice) or sharing the stage with Katherine.

And that brings me to Katherine Plumber. I was not especially anticipating her role, I have to admit. I love my Denton too much, and I was horribly concerned that the romantic angle between her and Jack would be too strong, taking away from the real love story of the play, that of this family whose name is Newsies. But I couldn’t be happier with her character and Kara Lindsay’s performance. She was amazing, and I could feel the rest of the audience connecting with her too. “Watch What Happens” is just one of her shining moments, and I am in love with her, and so happy of the way the writers brought her character in.

Originally posted by jginorton

It’s also beautiful to weave in the feminine vocals of Katherine with the only other female singing cast member, Medda Larkin (our very own being played by Aisha de Haas) in the middle of all those guys. Don’t get me wrong, because the Newsies chorus is the epitome of what makes the show so great, but having those softer moments and the gals singing brings enough of a change that it completely enlivens every other male vocal in the story.

Okay, enough being calm, rational, and technical for a minute. Let me “be real.”

I Am Not Okay. Not in this or any other universe will I ever be the same.

(The rest of this post is probably going to just be me screaming at random about different things.)

CRUTCHIE. HOLY COW. CRUTCHIE MY BABY. “Letter From the Refuge” absolutely killed me. THE FREAKIN ATTACK ON CRUTCHIE FREAKIN KILLED ME. Just him standing with Jack in the prologue with “Santa Fe.” THERE ARE NO GIFS FOR THIS. Andrew Keenan Bolger is of such high caliber, I can’t even begin to describe how much I love him in this role.

I BASICALLY CRIED SO HARD WHEN THE BULLS CLOSE IN ON THE NEWSIES. AND WHEN JACK SEES THEY HAVE CRUTCHIE. I THOUGHT I WAS GOING TO BE SICK.

Oh, yeah, also, little itty bitty detail here i was completely unaware of BROADWAY VERSION JACK KELLY IS A FLIPPIN ARTIST?????!!!! LIKE WHAT????!!!! OH.MY.GOSH. I LOVE THIS ANGLE SO MUCH. KAJLLGDFHLJFGHIERUNZUIZLGRF. HE’S PAINTING SANTA FE GUYS. LSLDGJAGKJHRUIGKNG. During “I Never Planned On You” he draws Katherine and the LED screen that assisted the set showed him sketching her as they talked and sang AND IDK IF THAT HAPPENS USUALLY IN THE STAGE PRODUCTION BUT I AND MY FRIEND AND PROBABLY EVERYONE ELSE WAS LIKE “HOLY CRAP AWWWW OHMYGOSH HOW PRECIOUS HOW PURE I’M NOT CRYING AT ALL NO” SO YEAH THAT IS A THING THAT  HAPPENED.

Little Les is amazing. Like, in the old movie, he wasn’t so much a character as a plot device. He was literally the little boy with the cute face who could sell the papes. In this, Les is the one who strikes up the deal with Jack, and Les is the one who shouts a message for Pulitzer as the guard closes the door in their faces. He is so precocious and adorable and perfect, and so much more a character in his own right, I am so pleased.

DID I MENTION BEN FANKHAUSER AS DAVEY???

Originally posted by mrsanselelgort

HIS SINGING. HIS ACTING. HIS CHARACTER AND INTERACTIONS WITH JACK AND LES. The confrontation between him and Jack later on when Davey is trying to get Jack to rejoin the Strike, and he says “it’s not like anyone died” and Jack whirls on him in rage, because of what happened to Crutchie, who could very well die at that point. I COULDN’T HANDLE. And when Davey reminds him what they’re fighting for, and why they shouldn’t stop. PERFECT BOYS, PERFECT.

AND I ALMOST FORGOT RACETRACK LAJKDHF. Race is my favorite Newsie from the old movie, and I was not disappointed by him here. Benjamin Cook is an adorable angel and my favorite bit of him probably has to be when he is staring wide-eyed at Governor Roosevelt at the end, so happy and in awe. Unfortunately I can’t find any gifs of him either arg.

AND SPOT, HOW COULD I MISS SPOT CONLON Tommy Bracco’s performance left nothing to be desired, he was as spot-on as his character’s name. WE ARE BROOKLYN NEWSIES

Originally posted by wildhorns

Oh.

Oh, and then there was This:

Originally posted by winnifredfoster

I HATE/LOVE THIS PART OF THE STORY SO MUCH. When Pulitzer forces Jack’s hand, makes him face the Newsies and turn on them, in order to save them and save Crutchie and Davey and Les, but Pulitzer also gives him money to go to Santa Fe and that is all the Newsies ever see. LKDJFLHDHFAJDHFLA MY HEART HURTS

I love Jack Kelly more than Raoul or the Phantom, or Dimitri, or Valjean or Marius or Enjolras, or even arguably Fiyero. I feel every single beat of “Santa Fe” as it blooms and changes from dream to dust to dream.

I adore how the stage version plays up the affect the Newsies strike had on child laborers everywhere, how Jack proclaims it isn’t only Newsies’ rights they’re striking for.

The singing was absolutely flawless. Flawless I tell you.

Originally posted by playbill

Originally posted by playbill

IDK GUYS I JUST DON’T HAVE ANY COMPLAINTS OK

This is on par with the night I saw Wicked on tour. I will be buying the DVD. I will watch it at least once a year. I guess, if I wasn’t before, I’m a Fansie now.

So, yeah, to close: I don’t think I will ever find another thing on this earth that impacts every bit of my soul as much as musical theater does. That is a part of me I will never outgrow, and never give up. Doesn’t matter if I ever make it to see a show on Broadway, or if I ever get on behind the scenes at a theater company. This is me.

This is an experience I want to relive every day for as many days as I have. I laughed, I cried, I came home to my roomies in such a state of embarrassed, blissful exhilaration you’d think I just came home from my first date with the love of my life - which is a completely accurate comparison.

I cried so much, I laughed so hard. #NewsiesForever and all that. There is so much more I could say, so much I feel like I am completely leaving out. But truthfully, when it comes right down to it, there are no words in the human language to describe this experience and how thrilled I am that I was able to go, that I live in the same universe as this caliber of artistry and storytelling. This phenomenon is beyond anything I can say, so I’ll stop trying. ;)

I hope that answers anyone’s questions to whether or not I enjoyed Newsies Live.

Originally posted by pontmarius

youtube

Just the usual.Sideline chicks,Tired ass music, LT with mics in their hands and Larry’s  Rag doll/ Puppet Theater  moves and cholo outfit.It’s about to get Lit ! Lau drop that mic bae please.