One very neat thing we did was to go see the new musical "Finding Neverland" on Broadway. This is a stage adaptation of the movie about how playwright James M. Barrie came to write the classic children's play "Peter Pan." I knew the story already from seeing the movie featuring Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet. But now, after seeing the stage play, I can wholeheartedly say, the musical is so much richer! The addition of music and stage magic makes the story so incredibly moving! We were privileged to see the original cast still in the first run performance. It was great! The actors were all very good, but Kelsey Grammar really stole the show. He was great and his part was so much fun! All in all, the production was full of high energy and surprises throughout!
I was most curious about how they managed the stage magic. One song, in particular, was so beautifully staged. While the character of Sylvia was singing outside of her row house in the moonlight, we were transported through time and space to London in the early 1900's. Then I started realizing that the clouds in the sky were going across the moon. The song was nice, but I was mesmerized by the effect of that sky. I think they must have had several scrims with different images and movies being projected onto them. It was mind boggling.
The part Kelsey Grammer played was the most pivotal and entertaining in the entire show. He played the over-bearing Theater impresario that "owned" James Barrie. He was always pressing James to create the next project. As he used phrases such as "Time is ticking, James...tick...tock...tick tock" or waved his crooked walking stick the shadows on the scenery behind him projected images of clocks or Pirate hooks, thus helping the audience understand that this is where James Barrie got the inspiration for the character of Captain Hook. Foreshadowing in the most entertaining way ever!
The magic was spectacular! So many beautiful effects such as flying, and Pirate shenanigans, and of pixie dust making everything sparkle. What a delightful production. Once again I am jealous of what can happen when creative people are given great leeway with healthy budgets!