More Guthrie Press, Plus Photos

Here’s another story on the Guthrie show, courtesy of the Associated Press. This blog post seems to have been cobbled together from other reports, but it’s worth it for the photos it contains.

(The bangs! The loose, braidless hair! Mercy!)

Esther from Gratuitious Violins shared her thoughts on the post below, and I’m pulling her excellent comments to share with everyone. She also did her own blogging about the show here.

It was an interesting article. A few things struck me: the writer said that the show “does not feel like a typical New York musical event.” He said the orchestra is “dominated by strings and fiddle.” And he noted that the composer is an opera writer from London who was unfamiliar with the books and the tv series. I don’t know whether any of this matters, whether he was trying to imply that it probably wouldn’t work on Broadway or what. [REALLY GOOD POINT. I HADN’T KNOWN ALL THE BROADWAY IMPLICATIONS THAT MIGHT SEEM OUT OF PLACE IN ANY OTHER THEATER WRITEUP. INTERESTING.]

He also mentioned that a new book writer was brought in to make the story more dramatic, which was interesting. [I HOPE THEY USED THE REAL DRAMA. THERE WAS ENOUGH, WASN’T THERE? ALTHOUGH PERHAPS NOT AS MUCH AS AN EPISODE OF BONAN–UH, I MEAN “LITTLE HOUSE.”] Also, Melissa Gilbert is not an experienced singer, although the story says she’s been working with a voice coach. [APPARENTLY HER MOTHER WAS IMPRESSED WITH HER VOICE WAY BACK WHEN!]

Another thing that intrigues me is it’s being marketed as a family show but the Guthrie Web site says that Little House is recommended for children ages 12 and up and the story focuses on the teenage Laura. Seems a bit of a mixed message to me. I just don’t know if this is something you’d take your 8-year-old to see as well as your 12-year-old. [THIS WILL BE INTERESTING TO DISCOVER. HOW ADULT CAN IT BE, REALLY? “SILVER LAKE” ADULT, AS OPPOSED TO “PLUM CREEK”?]

On the other hand, Broadway on Yahoo! has a theater blogger who says the Little House buzz has been great, and people are already talking about a Broadway transfer, although he doesn’t have any sources to back it up. [THIS IS FABULOUS TO HEAR! BUZZ IS GOOD. BUZZ IS VERY GOOD.] Anyway, I’m going to see it the weekend after Labor Day and I can’t wait! [DO LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK–AND THAT GOES FOR EVERYONE!]

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7 Responses to More Guthrie Press, Plus Photos

  1. Erica Randall says:

    i don’t think Melissa should be Ma. This is a musical!!!!!! Melissa is great, but i think that they should of gotten someone who sings better. I am glad that there is a play on Laura, but from what i read and saw from the pictures it doesn’t look too accurate.

    -erica

  2. Dakotagirl says:

    Not impressed by the photo in the article. A quote from MG said she hopes Michael Landon is proud. Heaven help us if he is.

  3. Esther says:

    Hey, thanks for the shoutout!

    Yeah, I am a little concerned that Melissa Gilbert isn’t a singer, but I’m willing to give her the benefit of the doubt. You know, one of my favorite actors, Kevin Spacey, wasn’t known as a singer but when he sang all of those Bobby Darin songs in “Beyond the Sea,” I was blown away. So you never know, she could be a wonderful surprise. Also, I don’t know how much singing she actually has in the show.

    I’m really not sure what to make of that comment from the Times about the music not sounding like a typical New York musical event, and then the comment about the writer coming from opera. Was he trying to imply something? Maybe he meant it sounded more like a symphony or an opera, and less like what you think of as a Broadway musical with lots of big, rousing dance numbers? I don’t know. The fact that it has a different sound may be a good thing!

    Anyway, I’ll definitely report back after I see it, and I’ll try to keep up with the Little House news, but you’re doing a great job with that!

  4. sgaissert says:

    The photos didn’t make me happy — the costumes looked too bright and fancy. They looked like . . . costumes! And old associations are hard to break: Melissa Gilbert looked like Laura with a wig on, playing dress-up.

  5. Dennis D. Picard says:

    I’m very under whelmed with the clothing/costumes. I know it is a play based on a series of NOVELS, (its like folks criticizing historical minutia in LAST OF THE MOHEGANS a movie based on a novel) but if they are trying to capture a particular place and time – specifically 1870s&80s – that “shift” and, what are they, leggings(?) on the Laura character are IMHO atrocious. Perhaps they employed the designer from PBS’s Frontier House? Don’t get me started! It puts me in mind of a few years back when I had a tangential relation with the folks producing LITTLE WOMEN on Broadway; but at least their costumes were pretty good

  6. Erica Randall says:

    my little 10 year old brother took a look at the pictures and was like,”these outfits are not right at all”. Poeple just don’t get that life was not all wonderful, thier clothes were not that bright and cheery too. Also, I totally agree with Dakota Girl, about what Melissa G said.

    -erica

  7. Rebecca says:

    I don’t expect, and never did expect, the musical to be anywhere near accurate. And actually, that’s okay with me. I used to be a purist, but now I’ve loosened up, when it comes to dramatic presentations. This is a musical. I just don’t think it needs to be held to the same standards as, say, a book. Or even a movie, for that matter! Musicals fall under creative arts, not history. I want to judge the musical on its own merits. (That hideous outfit with the “leggings” or pants or whatever Laura was wearing in the one picture did make me laugh though!!) As for Melissa’s comment — Michael Landon was almost like a father to her. He was a very important part of her childhood — like Laura was an important part of mine. I can totally understand her hoping this would make Michael proud. :o) Besides, it’s far more likely to make him proud than it is Laura so it’s just as well that it’s him she’s hoping to please. :o) :o) :o)

    I DID keep thinking when looking at the pictures that Melissa was Laura, and having to retrain my brain, though. This may make the musical not flow for me as easily as it otherwise might.

    Oh, and Melissa has some singing experience… Remember The Diary of Anne Frank — Oh Hanukkah, Oh Hanukkah, a sweet celebration… ? :o)

    Looking forward to seeing this for myself!

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