Evelyn @ 'Hadestown' - this show is on FIRE (you know, for being in Hell and all)
What’s it about?
On the road to Hell there was an ancient Greek myth. It’s an old tale; a cliched story. But now it’s being given new life by Persephone herself, with a jazzy alternative score and amazing set design to boot.
I have been waiting to see this show since I heard its music a while ago. I wasn’t particularly fond of most of the recording, but the New Orleans-style swing of “Way Down Hadestown” lured me into seeing the first preview performance — and it was cheap so no regrets.
Not only does it star the goddesses Eva Noblezada and Amber Gray, but it is also directed by Rachel Chavkin, who directed Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812. Side note: If you haven’t listened to the recording of that show you should. It’s one of the best musicals from the 2016-2017 Broadway season!
The Orpheus and Eurydice (also spelled Euridice, depending on who you ask) story has been retold throughout millennia, and this show does not shy away from the fact that it’s a well-known tale. While you might expect a story like this to be old and stale, this musical version spices things up with jaw-dropping sets, a musically varied score and wonderful performances by all. Also, any show that acknowledges the instrumentalists on stage by name is a plus in my book.
The story itself is altered in such a fresh and interesting way, you kind of forget how cliched it is. Orpheus isn’t this grand hero rescuing a damsel in distress out of the old cliche: “Hey, I’m in love! Let’s just shimmy on down to the underground and charm the king of Hell.” Eurydice isn’t some damsel in distress waiting for her boyfriend to rescue her. Hades isn’t just some simple villain. There’s so much more nuance with this iteration that you go along with the ride and enjoy every second of it.
Personally, I appreciated the musical much more live than I did just listening to it. So many pieces of the show can’t be solely conveyed through the music. While the music itself is good (very odd, but a wonderful score nonetheless), so much of the show is told through its visuals. The set! THE SET! Praise be to the designers, because the set and lighting are absolutely gorgeous. You really have to just be there and see it for yourself because explaining it would ruin how amazing it is. If you go — which you should — track the lighting cues with each character.
Everything was gorgeous! My jaw dropped in shock during so many parts of the show. In the age of movie-to-stage adaptations and jukebox musicals, this show offers a nice breath of originality even if “it’s an old tale from way back when... and we’re gonna sing it again and again.”
Tell us about your experience.
In the comments below.