Democrats, Get Your Messaging Act Together

I generally try to stay away from politics on this blog. But I’m obsessed with Democratic messaging — mainly, how bad it usually is — so, with the primary season heating up, let me play amateur political strategist for a few minutes.  Like many liberal Democrats, I’m constantly frustrated at the way the party has … Continue reading Democrats, Get Your Messaging Act Together

Could ‘Suffs’ Be the Next ‘Hamilton’?

Suffs, the new musical at the Public Theater, may be the first clear descendant of Hamilton. Like Lin-Manuel Miranda’s smash hit, the show is a lesson in American history, dense with exposition, mostly sung-through, and the product of a single creative mind. Like Miranda, singer-composer Shaina Taub has written the book, music, and lyrics — and also … Continue reading Could ‘Suffs’ Be the Next ‘Hamilton’?

A New ‘Music Man’: No Trouble in River City

Broadway loves to welcome back its classic musicals, especially when accompanied by a major star to juice the box office, and provide at least a whiff of reinvention. But the new revival of The Music Man, starring Hugh Jackman, has gotten a surprisingly sour reception from many of the critics.  “A huge let-down,” wrote the New York Post. “The … Continue reading A New ‘Music Man’: No Trouble in River City

To the Critics of ‘Mrs. Doubtfire’: Lighten Up

No theater genre inspires more disdain among critics and other guardians of Broadway’s “purity” than the movie-to-musical adaptation. Taking a popular old film, adding songs, and turning it into a family-friendly Broadway show? Too crass, too unoriginal, too nakedly commercial. Begone!  Mrs. Doubtfire, a new musical based on the 1993 Robin Williams film, has come to … Continue reading To the Critics of ‘Mrs. Doubtfire’: Lighten Up