Can’t Make It to Broadway? Book and Movie Ideas for Theater Lovers.

By admin Dec20,2023

Waitress: The Musical

If you didn’t get enough sugar, butter, flour from “Waitress,” the 2016 musical with a melodic pop score by Sara Bareilles, or “Waitress,” the 2007 Adrienne Shelly film starring Keri Russell, confectionary cravings may be met with a third iteration: “Waitress: The Musical” the movie. The film version (now in theaters) presents Diane Paulus’s musical production (which was nominated for four Tony Awards), shot on Broadway in 2021, and stars Bareilles as the down-on-her-luck protagonist, a newly pregnant, hard-working waitress with a knack for baking and a crush on her gynecologist. In her review for The Times, Elisabeth Vincentelli wrote that Bareilles provides “a warm anchor for the movie,” and thanks to her, this second musical helping “goes down easy.”

A Christmas Carol

A pay-what-you-wish streaming of this dramatized holiday classic offers a glimpse into Dickens’s time, if with a little more glam. Viewers are transported to 19th-century London by the show, set in a parlor room at New York City’s Merchant House that is ornamented with Christmas décor. John Kevin Jones stars as Charles Dickens, under the direction of Rhonda Dodd. A one-time donation includes free shares to friends and family and unlimited views until Dec. 30.

How to Dance in Ohio

An adaptation of Alexandra Shiva’s 2015 documentary about young autistic adults preparing for a spring formal dance in Columbus, Ohio, is the basis for the new Broadway musical with the same name. The documentary film, which won a Peabody Award, centers on a social skills therapy program. The musical is set at a similar counseling center for young adults and has a cast of seven autistic actors, all making their Broadway debuts. The film “is not a traditional documentary full of talking heads sharing detached academic wisdom,” the critic Neil Genzlinger wrote in a review in The Times, and though there are plenty of feel-good moments, the documentary goes deeper than the cloying evening-news stories of uplift.

Best Worst Thing That Ever Could Have Happened

Stephen Sondheim superfans know this one well. For the uninitiated, this 2016 documentary film by the theater director Lonny Price presents an enchanting look behind the scenes of “Merrily We Roll Along,” the notorious 1981 flop by Sondheim and Hal Prince. “Best Worst Thing” features tender interviews between Price, who was in the show, and his former castmates, alongside audition and rehearsal footage of their youth (all the actors in the original production were ages 14-20). At times the film mirrors the plot of “Merrily,” which, depending on your disposition, is a heartening or heartbreaking cautionary tale about time’s erosion of youthful ideals. For those who can’t make it to the starry revival on Broadway, experiencing the show’s genesis through its wistful first company just might be the next best thing.

Swan Lake

If all of those books and documentaries tire the mind, a wordless spectacle might be in order. Matthew Bourne’s reinterpretation of “Swan Lake,” with its cast of bare-chested, muscular male swans, is available for free streaming. A year after the boys’ version of the classic premiered in 1995 at Sadlers Wells in London, the production moved to the West End and later had a four-month run on Broadway in 1998 (for which Bourne won two Tony Awards, for directing and choreography). Behold beautiful dancers who need not be in the same room to conjure the wonder of the live performance.

By admin

Related Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *