Friday, March 26, 2010
The Scottsboro Boys
Well this is exactly what Kandor and Ebb set out to do and despite the death of Fred Ebb before the work was completed, it has finally been given its world primere in New York City at the Vineyard Theatre. Despite the awkward premise, the show works. It instantly feels both entertaining and uncomfortable at the same time. It's supposed to feel that way - but never lets you get stuck being uncomfortable for too long. Memorable numbers, inspiring ballads, rousing show numbers and talent crawling all over the stage make for an invigorating and educational night of theatre. Stand out performances by all the boys and most of all John Cullum as the interlocutor.
This one is likely to transfer to Broadway. The stage at the Vineyard is small - probably too small, but Susan Stroman worked her magic nonetheless. On a larger Broadway stage, this one has great potential. I'm not sure it will have a long lasting run, but it will certainly make a substantial contribution to the live theatre experience and enrich its audiences substantially while there.