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25 September 2011 @ 07:53 pm
Newsies! the Musical  






September 24, 2011 at the Papermill Playhouse--

Newsies! the Musical


(from l-r: Kathryn, me, Teree, Mommy)



So, last night we took the 20 minute drive from Edison to Millburn, NJ to catch the new performance of Newsies! the Musical being shown at the Papermill Playhouse. Though I'd never been before, the drive was quick and pleasant and, since we arrived 45 minutes prior to the curtain going up, there was still ample parking (parking on weekends and nights: $8.00). We took our picture outside (see: the first image) and decided to check out what souvenirs were available for purchase since there was still plenty of time before the show. I was pleasantly surprised at the offering: t-shirts, newsboy caps, a messenger bag, replica's of old newspapers (including the infamous: Trolley Strike Drags on for Third Week that is a prop for the show). There was also a mug, the movie DVD and soundtrack, a poster and typewriter style jewelry. The prices ran from reasonable to a little pricey, and the three souvenirs I bought totaled $70:



Now, onto the show itself...

* the following is a transcript of the playbill given out:

the scenes and musical numbers of NEWSIES
TIME AND PLACE: New York City, 1899

ACT ONE


PROLOGUE: A Rooftop, Night
Santa Fe.......................Jack and Crutchie

SCENE 1: Newsie Square, Morning
Carrying the Banner.......................Jack, Newsies, Ensemble

SCENE 2: Pulitzer's Office
The News is Getting Better....................Pulitzer, Seitz, Bunsen, and Hannah

SCENE 3: Street and Stage Door, Later That Day

SCENE 4: Medda's Theater
Don't Come a-Knocking.........................Medda, Medda's Girls, Jack, and Katherine

SCENE 5: Newsie Square, New Morning
The World Will Know...........................Jack, Davey, Les and the Newsies

SCENE 6: Jacobi's Deli and Street
The World Will Know (Reprise).................Jack, Davey, Les and the Newsies

SCENE 7: Katherine's Desk, Moments Later
Watch What Happens........................Katherine

SCENE 8: Newsie Square
Seize the Day.............................Jack, Davey, Les and the Newsies
Santa Fe..................................Jack

ACT TWO


SCENE 1: Jacobi's Deli, Next Day
King of New York..........................Davey, Les, Katherine, and the Newsies

SCENE 2: Medda's Theater
Watch What Happens (Reprise)..................Jack, Davey, Les and Katherine

SCENE 3: Pulitzer's Office
The News is Getting Better (Reprise)..........Pulitzer, Snyder, Seitz, Bunsen, Mayor, and the Delancey Brothers

SCENE 4: Brooklyn Bridge, That Night, and Medda's Theater
Brooklyn's Here...........................Spot Conlon, York, and the Newsies

SCENE 5: Rooftop, Night
Then I See You Again......................Katherine and Jack

SCENE 6: Pulitzer's Cellar, Late at Night
Seize the Day (Reprise).......................The Newsies
Once and For All..............................Jack, Davey, Les, Darcy, Bill and the Newsies

SCENE 7: Pulitzer's Office and Newsie Square, Morning
Finale....................................Jack and Company



-- First off, I have to say I really liked it. There were things that I didn't like -- any Newsies fan would be a little taken aback by all the lyric changes, I think -- but, for the most part, they worked. The set was wonderful, considering they had a small stage to stand for New York. The fire escape sets were inventive and one of my favorite parts was the "rooftop chase" between Jack, David and Snyder. The music... ah, the music. Just the opening chords, playing throughout the theater, music I've heard countless times for close to a decade now... it was magical. As for the lyrics changes, while I didn't agree with all of them, I just think of it as another version/interpretation of songs that I love. These versions aren't replacing the originals, I know -- they're just more of Newsies to love! Just like their new take on Jack...

-- Jack. Ah... see, now I'm definitely a self-proclaimed Jack "Cowboy" Kelly fangirl. Jeremy Jordan's version of the character was very interesting. I felt he nailed the gist of the character, the dreamer, the "blowhard", the face of the strike. He takes Pulitzer's money for the right reasons, even if they seem like the wrong reasons, and he saves the day in the end. Of course I missed the red bandana, the cowboy hat... but I still saw the merit in the performance. Then again, since Jeremy Jordan was charismatic, handsome and extremely talented, I think I would've liked him if they turned Jack into a third Delancey brother ;)

-- Katherine. Here, I'm not so sure what I think. Mainly, considering all of the research I've done in this era, I just couldn't get past how "spunky" she was. It seemed a little forced to me, almost as if they were trying to make up for Sarah and have a female character that the audience could relate to. That's not to say that Kara Lindsay (Katherine) couldn't sing -- she could. I really liked Watch What Happens. It' just... I don't know. I still felt like the love story was tacked on.

-- One thing I really thought was done well was the story of the film being adapted the way it was. Being a film purist, I knew there would be plenty of changes to make it flow better in a stage performance, but I was still glad to see that the scenes they couldn't show -- Jack visiting Crutchy in the Refuge, Jack and Davey going to Brooklyn to see Spot -- were mentioned in a way that I could still visualize it. It worked for me.

-- The Brooklyn song :) I wasn't sure that I could watch that with a straight face, especially after all the boys made Spot Conlon out to be such a baddie, but it surprised me by being good. I got that West Side Story vibe from it, almost like they were singing a war chant as they marched down the Brooklyn Bridge. The image of the Bridge behind them was a nice touch.

-- The dancing was simply phenomenal. Just watching the dancing, it was like I'd fallen into the film itself. Honestly, the leads could've been off-key, the acting flat -- it wasn't; the one-liners made the audience crack up more than once -- and I would've been happy just for the dancing. Especially during Carrying the Banner and the tap number(!) that was King of New York.

So, yeah... I'm really psyched about going back next Sunday for Fan Day. I hope to have more pictures then!




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niabidozu on November 1st, 2011 07:11 am (UTC)
Gratitude is the sign of noble souls.