Thursday, 5 August 2010
Evita: It isn’t me, it’s you
Music by Andrew Lloyd Weber
Directed by Gary Griffin
Featuring Juan Chioran, Chilina Kennedy, Josie Marasco, Vince Staltari, Josh Young
The Story: In the 1940’s a girl from the sticks makes good by climbing to stardom as a radio actress, film star and finally First Lady of Argentina, becoming beloved of all – a Cinderella story. Except that Eva Duarte is no Cinderella.
For traditional Stratford audiences, Evita might be a bit of a shock. First of all, it is about a villainess with no redeeming qualities whatsoever (at least, that is the way this production depicts her). Secondly, there is no dialogue, only music, and that music is rock music and that music is LOUD. So loud that in some moments audience members have been seen covering their ears. So loud that in these same moments the leads sound like they are screaming to be heard over the music, and that is not fun for the audience, and it cannot be much fun for the actors either.
Why the directors and sound engineers cannot seem to balance the music and vocals is anyone’s guess, but it does the production (and audience) a huge disservice, because this is an extraordinarily talented cast. (And by the way, there are over 110 costumes in Evita, so rounds of applause please for the wardrobe department, and their attendants for some astonishingly swift costume and wig changes.)
No, we won’t.
Evita continues in repertory at the Avon Theatre until November 6th.
No hearing assistive devices required.
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