last weekend with bironic
, and it was very fun.
The reviews have been uneven to say the least so I was a bit worried going in, but I loved it! Looking back at the reviews, they’re mostly like, This isn’t as elaborate as the three-hour version with Julie Andrews so boo to this
I’ve never seen the three-hour version to compare it to, so I took this version on its own merits and thought it was quite fun. They did have some occasions when they very blatantly had a symbol stand in for something more elaborate (e.g., covered the floor in red to show that Arthur was standing where a battle had recently taken place) -- that worked for me. They didn’t try to pretend; they very clearly indicated when things were symbols. Another example: rather than close the curtain and move things on the set, they had the actors move things on the set. Generally that was done with a choreographed flourish from the actors, indicating “Ta da! We are doing this transition now!”
The set design in general was one I loved. Use of warm woods, movable set pieces, tall arches placed in foreground, midground and background for a sense of scale. In contrast to say, Prodigal Son, where the minimalist design of the outdoor scenes were too minimal for my taste, the set design in this version of Camelot gave a good sense of place in each scene.
Now why did I choose to see a play at a theater located 300 miles from my home? Robert Sean Leonard, naturally. He played Arthur, and looked good. He was SO MUCH more comfortable showing affection to Guenevere (played by a very good actress named Britney Coleman, who Bironic recognized as having been in A Very Potter Musical on YouTube) than he’s been in anything else ever, so that was nice. It looked like he had grown a tummy on him, but I don’t see how that’s possible in the few weeks since promo pics, so maybe that was the costume.
Singing isn't RSL's greatest strength but he acquitted himself fine (other than dropping the end of some of his words, seriously, RSL, finish what you start). He slid into the Rex Harrison/Robert Preston sing/talk mode (see the 1964 film My Fair Lady and the 1962 film Music Man if you don't know what I mean) and that was fine.
Did you see the promo vid where he was dancing, and it looked kind of dorky and uncoordinated? That scene takes place in Arthur & Guenevere’s bedroom, and they are joking around. So it’s supposed to look a little bit dorky and impromptu. :)
One amazingly fun part that wasn't RSL: Mordred, the villain. Bironic and I agreed immediately that he was very reminiscent of Seth Green ("Scott Evil!" I said) and that we loved the sparkle seen in his thighs and personality, both. (bironic
's full write-up, which is better than mine, is here
The actors didn’t come out afterward, so no autograph or close-up encounter, unfortunately. But all in all, it was a great time and I’m glad I went.
I'm even more glad that I chose to travel the way I did because it meant a lot more time with Bironic, and that was even better than the play. <3 <3 <3
Next up for RSL: back to San Diego to play Richard II in summer 2017
Next up for me: Going to the UK for work in a few weeks and getting to see my awesome RSL-loving friend daisylily
Dorky dancing that I was talking about: