I'm glad to here that it is good. Musicals about vampires don't have a history of being very successful and I really want this one to be. I'm really looking forward to both this and the Wedding Singer musical as the potential hits of the Broadway season.
Whats more important than me liking it, is it is a hit with the Audience as a whole. (Some critics though, have not been so kind, but then some critics did not like 'Wicked' when it was here either). Lately San Francisco has been fortunate to be a testing ground for some pre-broadway shows, Wicked was here a couple years ago, the Ill fated "Lennon" (Too bad Yoko screwed it up, I had high hopes for that one) and now Lestat.
The story crosses 'Interveiw with the Vampire' and of course Lestat. Visually amazing, beautiful to look at, and great music. Only drawback is it is almost 3 hours, but then as it is still in preveiws, it is a work in progress, so it might be cut just a bit before Broadway.
Hugh Panaro is Lestat is is great, as is the rest of the cast.
With: Rachel Coloff, Nikki Renee Daniels, Joseph Dellger, Colleen Fitzpatrick, Chris Peluso, Megan Reinking, Will Swenson, Tommar Wilson.
Musical numbers: "From the Dead," "Nothing Here," "In Paris," "In Paris" (reprise), "The Thirst," "The Thirst" (reprise), "Make Me as You Are," "To Live Like This," "The Origin of the Species," "The Crimson Kiss," "The Thirst" (reprise), "Welcome to the New World," "Embrace It," "I Want More," "I'll Never Have That Chance," "Sail Me Away," "To Kill Your Kind," "Embrace It" (reprise), "After All This Time," "From the Dead (Finale)."
----------------------------------------------- DISNEYLAND: Greatest Man-Made Place On Earth
YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK: Greatest *GOD-Made Place On Earth
I've been watching the development of this show for some time and really would like to see it during the SF previews. Vampire musicals have not had a good track record although this one having Ms. Rice attached might have a built in audience that could help it find audiences for 8 shows a week.
When "Dracula - The Musical" previewed in San Diego several years ago it was a sell out and the audiences loved it. I liked it very much and thought the staging was very good. It finally made it to Broadway two years ago and had a very short run of a few months.
Then, we had "Dance of the Vampires" starring Michael Crawford at the same time. A solid hit in Vienna and other European captitals for several years, it was thought to be a sure "hit" in its Broadway version. It closed after 7 weeks.
Going to be interesting to watch "Lestat" and its journey to NYC.
Lestat has potential if they can hire a new director, STAT. Robert Jess Roth is quite possibly the most untalented, unvisionary director represented on Broadway. His work has never surpassed serviceable...luckily with Beauty and the Beast, the material is so good that the direction is not as important (though of course, such excellent material deserves top-notch imaginative staging, which he did not provide). He, Matt West and Ms. Woolverton were let go from Aida for a reason. Unfortunately for Lestat, the score is not that great (it has moments but overall is pretty meh), the book does a mortifying job of solidifying the Vampire Chronicles in a well-executed, meaningful fashion, and the story has been robbed of any inherent sexuality.
When Wicked was in SF, it got mostly mixed reviews. Lestat had gotten positively dismal reviews and the word of mouth is not good at all.
I'll put it this way. Producers of other new musicals are all ready circling the Palace Theatre, where Lestat is supposed to open in March. No one in NYC expects this piece to do well unless it is seriously reworked by a new creative team, which would effectively delay the show's opening.
It's too bad really, because Hugh Panaro, Carolee Carmello and Drew Sarich are amazing and deserving of much better material to soar with.
His work has never surpassed serviceable...luckily with Beauty and the Beast, the material is so good that the direction is not as important (though of course, such excellent material deserves top-notch imaginative staging, which he did not provide).
Wonderful post, Goin2. It reminds me of a piece I read quite a few years ago about B&B's production and staging. The writer said it would be interesting to see how a scaled down minimalist staging in the future would make this musical soar. He envisioned a slowly turning rose encased in crystal hanging from the flies during the production.
I saw the original full blown production of "Chicago" with Gwen Verdon and Chita Rivera and while I loved the show it was only until it was scaled back and given the radical new production in its revival that the power of the material truly came through.
Curious to know more about the physical production of "Lestat."
Ouch! Here I was getting more and more optimistic about this project and you guys have now brought me all the way back to where I started..... scared. Is it really this imposible for there to be a quality vampire musical?! Good grief, they all start out with at least some promise and yet they all seem to end like this. Hopefully they can yet pull it off and get it on the right track.