All tagged Jane Krakowski
The definitive cast recording of any Broadway musical is always a matter of personal preference, so it is really hard to state that one particular recording supersedes all others. One person might make an argument for a particular performer, others might prefer a certain sound quality, while still others are attracted to the perfect packaging. Since I will not assert that personal preferences are wrong (what's that? It's okay to have differing opinions?), I won't call the new cast recording of the 2016 revival of She Loves Me “definitive”. I will, however, call it “MY definitive” and I am certain that it will be my go-to recording of the show for decades to come.
Lately, I have been bemoaning the absence of pure joy in musical theatre. In fact, it seems that most Broadway musicals have to be emotionally eviscerating or screaming, over-microphoned, power belting diva battles to succeed. If comedy is attempted, musical theatre has to be salacious, mean-spirited or vulgar. Sometimes it is nice to go to the theatre and just get absorbed in a delightful plot, a comedy of errors with characters who make you smile and songs that stick in your brain because they actually have a melody. Is it any wonder, then, that I find myself in a state of euphoria over The Roundabout Theatre Company’s revival of the 1963 Jerry Bock, Sheldon Harnick, and Joe Masteroff musical She Loves Me.
She Loves Me is one of those musicals that has a special little following in the musical theatre community, beloved for its intimate structure, its lush and lovely Bock & Harnick score, and for its gentle little romantic/comedy of errors plot. It is considered a coup-de-theatre-going to see a production of this under-produced gem. Laura Benanti is one of those musical theatre stars who inspires her own special following thanks to her ability to transform herself so thoroughly and thoughtfully with each role she plays. She also has an audacious sense of humor, a sparkling wit, a touch of irreverence, and a most affecting singing voice. Her ability to balance humor with heart makes her the perfect choice to play the lovesick shop clerk Amalia Balash in She Loves Me. Fortunately, Roundabout Theatre had that same thought and cast Ms. Benanti (in the role that she was born to play) in their forthcoming revival that is now in previews at Studio 54.