Theater Review: ‘Carousel’ BROADWAY REVIEWS

Opening Night:
Closing:
Open Ended

Theater: Imperial Theatre / 249 West 45th Street, New York, NY, 10036

Synopsis: 

It's been nearly 25 years since Rodgers and Hammerstein's “Carousel” has come around on Broadway. And good reason... the last production featuring a young Audra McDonald set the bar pretty high. And while the current revival doesn't measure up in some ways, it makes up for it in others - starting with that glorious score.

With an orchestra numbering more than two dozen musicians, it is pure ear candy once the overture swells. Somewhat disappointing is what meets the eye, with design elements that scream low budget. The choreographed open introducing the carousel features a single horse off to the side, and some of the costume choices were head scratching.

But back to the sound. This is a beautifully sung production. All of the principal performers are in sublime voice. Let's start with Joshua Henry as anti-hero Billy Bigelow, the charismatic carnival barker who hits his adoring wife. It's a role made even more challenging in today’s cultural climate. His one shot at redemption comes at the end of the first act performing “Soliloquy,” in which the brute gets to show a heart. Henry delivers big here, bringing the house down with his commanding performance.

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