Last night I saw the musical Hair for the first time. This was of course a revival as the original premiered in 1967. I wasn’t expecting a whole lot, the soundtrack doesn’t feature any timeless songs that stick with you they way a Wicked, Phantom, or LesMis does. What Hair does have to offer, however, is a fantastic look at the counterculture movement of the late 1960’s and a message that is shockingly relevant 43 years later. I actually think right now is the perfect time for a revival as Hair’s message seems much more pertinent to the last 10 years than the 80’s or 90’s. The tone is cheerfully dark, much like a lot of the folk music of the time (Simon & Garfunkel, The Mamas and the Papas), which suits my tastes perfectly (for a modern version of this see The Weepies).
So, if you’ve never seen Hair, if you’re interested in what the hippie movement was all about or you just want to be moved by a dark and emotional musical, go run out and see Hair. If you’re in Phoenix the show runs through Sunday.
Saw The Lion King at ASU Gammage last night. I’m a pretty big theater fan for anyone who knows me, especially musicals.
- This is the same old tired Lion King story you remember from the movie. Same Disney obsession with monarchies and the perfect societies they usher in. Same silly gazelle bowing down to the lion who will eventually eat them.
- This version actually showed the lions hunting (and killing) the gazelle. Props to whoever inserted that scene.
- Costume design and set design still has space to be insanely innovative and stunning. I saw some of this at the Tony’s last year and sort of knew what to expect but it’s entirely different in person. Wow.
- Never underestimate the emotional impact of a big-ass drum and the lights going out at the same time. The end of the opening number with the drum had much of the visceral emotion I thought made the end of Act 1 of Wicked the best bit of theatrical theater I have ever seen.