Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Nice Work If You Can Get It ****

(Please click on the title to see the full review.)
I am baffled by the middling to negative reviews this Gershwin musical has received, because I thought it 's wonderful. Joe DiPietro's tongue-in-cheek book cleverly blends about 20 Gershwin songs into a delightfully absurd plot loosely based on Oh Kay! The almost uniformly excellent cast (more about that later), stunning sets by Derek McLane, gorgeous costumes by Martin Pakledinaz, lush orchestrations by Bill Elliott and endlessly inventive choreography by Kathleen Marshall, who also directed, offer a lot to enjoy. Kelli O'Hara is marvelous as singer, dancer and comedienne. Michael McGrath stands out among a strong supporting cast that includes Judy Kaye and Estelle Parsons. The only weak link is Matthew Broderick; his singing and dancing are competent, but his signature nebbishy persona has lost its charm for me. I guess his name still sells tickets. With a stronger male lead, the show would be an unqualified success. As it is, it still provides a most pleasant evening. Running time: 2 hours, 40 minutes including intermission.

No comments: