Saturday, October 22, 2011

Is This What Too Much Sun Does To A Person?

How could I pass up an opportunity to see La Cage Aux Folles? It is a Broadway classic and, given the frequency of revivals and the average human lifespan, this was probably my only opportunity. Unfortunately, I'm a little hard up for cash so I got a cheap but not completely nosebleed inducing seat at our local venue. Cage is just starting its' national tour from the Broadway revival that won three Tony Awards in 2010. It's a great show, not nearly as groundbreaking as it once was but the music holds up and the sentiment is strong. The Cagelles were fantastic, those guys were a better group of dancers than I've seen in any production. Christopher Sieber, as Albin, did the heavy lifting for this production and was more than up for the task. Which brings me to the unfortunate fact that it had to become such a lop-sided show because Sieber's costar, George Hamilton, was useless. Hamilton, though he has done some film and television work, is mostly known for being tan. Tan does not cut it in a Broadway show. His singing voice was more the 'talk-sing' type and he seemed to be suffering from some sort of painful arthritis because his movements were as robotic as his delivery. It was difficult to watch him move so slowly and awkwardly that he became two to three beats behind the rest of the cast when they were doing very simple footwork. Those years in the sun and the tanning booth seem to have fried his brain and cooked his muscles down to nothing. It is easy to see that without Hamilton, the production could really take off. The set, lighting, direction, and cast are equal to the task and if the producers could find a costar as talented as Sieber then this tour could continue for years to come. I highly recommend you catch it if you can, just do not spend big bucks if George Hamilton is still in the show.