St. James Theatre, (11/17/2014 - 1/04/2015)

First Preview: Oct 28, 2014
Opening Date: Nov 17, 2014
Closing Date: Jan 04, 2015
Total Previews: 21
Total Performances: 56

Category: Musical, Revival, Broadway

Opening Night Production Staff

Theatre Owned / Operated by Jujamcyn Theaters (Jordan Roth: President; Rocco Landesman: President Emeritus; Paul Libin: Executive Vice President; Jack Viertel: Senior Vice President)

Produced by Darren Bagert, Martin Massman, Jayne Baron Sherman, Joan Raffe & Jhett Tolentino, Universal Stage Productions, Joined At The Hip Productions, CJ E&M/Mike Coolik, ShadowCatcher Entertainment, Michael M. Kaiser, Jim Kierstead, Marc David Levine, Catherine & Fred Adler, Bredeweg & Carlberg, Clear Channel Spectacolor, Curtis Forsythe, Gloken, Highbrow & Nahem, Nobile Lehner Shea Productions, Pretty Freaks, Weatherby & Fishman Theatrical, Matthew Masten and Jujamcyn Theaters (Jordan Roth: President; Rocco Landesman: President Emeritus; Paul Libin: Executive Vice President; Jack Viertel: Senior Vice President); Produced in association with The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and La Jolla Playhouse (Christopher Ashley: Artistic Director; Michael S. Rosenberg: Managing Director)

Book by Bill Russell; Lyrics by Bill Russell; Music by Henry Krieger; Additional Book Material: Bill Condon; Musical Director: Sam Davis; Music arranged by Sam Davis; Music orchestrated by Harold Wheeler; Original Arrangements: David Chase

Directed by Bill Condon; Choreographed by Anthony Van Laast; Associate Director: Dave Solomon; Associate Choreographer: Janet Rothermel

Scenic Design by David Rockwell; Costume Design by Paul Tazewell; Lighting Design by Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer; Sound Design by Peter Hylenski; Special Make-Up Effects Design: Dave Elsey and Lou Elsey; Wig and Hair Design by Charles G. LaPointe; Make-Up Design by Cookie Jordan; Associate Scenic Design: Dick Jaris; Associate Costume Design: Sky Switser; Associate Lighting Design: Jeanne Koenig; Associate Sound Design: Justin Stasiw; Associate Wig & Hair Design: Liz Printz

General Manager: Foresight Theatrical; Company Manager: Thom Clay

Production Manager: Juniper Street Productions; Production Stage Manager: Linda Marvel; Stage Manager: Matthew Aaron Stern

Musical Coordinator: Howard Joines; Conducted by Sam Davis; Associate Conductor: Greg Jarrett; Keyboard 1: Greg Jarrett; Keyboard 2: David Gardos; Drums: Larry Lelli; Percussion: Billy Miller; Woodwind 1: Greg Thymius; Woodwind 2: Deborah Avery; Horn: Kyle Hoyt; Trumpet/Flugelhorn: Alex Bender; Trombone/Tuba: Nate Mayland; Guitars/Banjo: Brian Koonin; Bass: Steve Count; Concert Master: Cenovia Cummins; Violin: Keats Dieffenbach; Viola: Todd Low; Cello: Stephanie Cummins; Music Copying: Emily Grishman Music Preparation/Emily Grishman, Katharine Edmonds

Illusion Design: Paul Kieve

Creative Supervisor: Jack Tantleff; Vocal Supervisor: Liz Caplan; Casting: Laura Stanczyk Casting, CSA; Press Representative: O&M Co.; Advertising: SPOTCo, Inc.; Marketing: Type A Marketing; Website and Interactive Marketing: 87AM; Dance Captain: Brandon Bieber; Photographer: Joan Marcus

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Opening Night Cast

Erin DavieViolet Hilton
Emily PadgettDaisy Hilton
Matthew HydzikBuddy Foster
Robert JoySir
Ryan SilvermanTerry Connor
David St. LouisJake
Brandon Bieber3-Legged Man
Suitor
Ensemble
Matthew Patrick DavisGeek
Doctor
Ensemble
Charity Angel DawsonFortune Teller
Ensemble
Lauren ElderVenus di Milo
Ensemble
Derek HansonRoustabout
Doctor
Suitor
Ensemble
Javier IgnacioDog Boy
Houdini
Suitor
Ensemble
Jordanna JamesFemale Cossack
Ensemble
Kelvin Moon LohHalf Man/Half Woman
Doctor
Ensemble
Barrett MartinHuman Pin Cushion
Judge
Ray
Suitor
Ensemble
Con O'Shea-CrealRoustabout
Suitor
Ensemble
Don RichardLizard Man
Doctor
Sir's Lawyer
Tod Browning
Ensemble
Blair RossBearded Lady
Auntie
Ensemble
Hannah ShankmanTattoo Girl
Ensemble
Michaeljon SlingerSuitor
Josh WalkerMale Cossack
Ensemble

Swings: Brandon Andrus, Isaiah Johnson, Michaeljon Slinger and DeLaney Westfall

Standby: Megan McGinnis (Daisy Hilton, Violet Hilton)

Understudies: Brandon Andrus (Buddy Foster, Sir, Terry Connor), Brandon Bieber (Buddy Foster), Isaiah Johnson (Jake), Barrett Martin (Terry Connor), Don Richard (Sir) and DeLaney Westfall (Daisy Hilton, Violet Hilton)

Awards and Nominations

Drama Desk Award

 2015 Outstanding Revival of a Musical or Revue [nominee] 

Produced by Darren Bagert, Martin Massman, Jayne Baron Sherman, Joan Raffe & Jhett Tolentino, Universal Stage Productions, Joined At The Hip Productions, CJ E&M/Mike Coolik, ShadowCatcher Entertainment, Michael M. Kaiser, Jim Kierstead, Marc David Levine, Catherine & Fred Adler, Bredeweg & Carlberg, Clear Channel Spectacolor, Curtis Forsythe, Gloken, Highbrow & Nahem, Nobile Lehner Shea Productions, Pretty Freaks, Weatherby & Fishman Theatrical, Matthew Masten and Jujamcyn Theaters (Jordan Roth: President; Rocco Landesman: President Emeritus; Paul Libin: Executive Vice President; Jack Viertel: Senior Vice President); Produced in association with The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and La Jolla Playhouse (Christopher Ashley: Artistic Director; Michael S. Rosenberg: Managing Director)

 2015 Outstanding Actor in a Musical [nominee] 

Ryan Silverman

 2015 Outstanding Actress in a Musical [nominee] 

Erin Davie

 2015 Outstanding Sound Design in a Musical [nominee] 

Sound Design by Peter Hylenski

 2015 Outstanding Director of a Musical [nominee] 

Bill Condon

Songs

music by Henry Krieger; lyrics by Bill Russell

ACT 1
Come Look at the Freaks
Like Everyone Else
Very Well Connected
The Devil You Know
Typical Girls Next Door
You Should Thank Me Every Day
Cut Them Apart
I Will Never Leave You
All in the Mind
Come See a New Land
Feelings You've Got To Hide
Say Goodbye to the Sideshow
Ready to Play
The Interview
Buddy Kissed Me
Who Will Love Me As I Am?
ACT 2
Stuck With You
Leave Me Alone
New Year's Eve
Private Conversation
One Plus One Equals Three
You Should Be Loved
A Great Wedding Show
Marry Me, Terry
I Will Never Leave You (Reprise)
Come Look at the Freaks (Reprise)

Reviews


AP: "'Side Show' Is a Soaring, Must-See Musical"

After the favorably reviewed musical "Side Show" closed its original three-month Broadway run in 1997, swallowing a $7 million loss for its producers, it still garnered four Tony Award nominations.

Potential audience members stayed away because the idea of seeing the story of real-life British conjoined twins Daisy and Violet Hilton onstage seemed disturbing. Seventeen years later, so-called "freaks" are in vogue on TV and "The Elephant Man" is about to begin a Broadway revival.

Author-lyricist Bill Russell and composer Henry Krieger ("Dreamgirls") have reworked the music, adding orchestrations by Tony-winner Harold Wheeler and musical direction by Sam Davis. With a live orchestra performing the gorgeous score and inventive direction by Academy Award-winner Bill Condon ("Chicago" and "Dreamgirls") who also contributed additional book material, the reimagined "Side Show" that opened Monday night at the St. James Theatre is a stunning, soaring, must-see musical.

The conjoined twins are vividly portrayed in their youth, during Depression-era 1920s and early '30s, by Erin Davie and Emily Padgett. A noir freak show introduces the strong cast, led by a pasty-faced Robert Joy as the gleefully odious manager. The rest of the sideshow attractions stomp resentfully onstage, darkly singing "Come Look at the Freaks."

The girls then appear angelically, high on a platform above. Star attractions in the seedy show, they're cheaply outfitted but clearly talented, and Padgett and Davie harmonize beautifully while creating distinct personalities for the twins. Padgett is a feisty and outgoing Daisy, restless yet loving toward her sister. Davie gives Violet a softer, more romantic personality, often delicately expressive.

Scenes from their Dickensian childhood and the distraction of media attention as they attain success add poignancy to their close relationship. The girls are sweet and endearing, as embodied in their lovely signature duet, "I Will Never Leave You." They want to be like everyone else, per the ironic number "Typical Girls Next Door," but their obvious difference is given a humorous, if at times heartbreaking coloration through much of the show.

The twins consider setting out for the vaudeville circuit, courtesy of handsome talent scout Terry, (Ryan Silverman, dashing and a little mysterious), and his pal Buddy, (an earnest, boyish Matthew Hydzik), who is alienated in his own way by staying in the closet. In jaunty dance numbers, the girls comically pretend to try to go in different directions, but things turn serious when one of them falls in love and their romantic aspirations threaten their lifelong, loving closeness.

Condon's imaginative staging includes a nightmarish flashback to the girls' childhood exploitation at the hands of mercenary adults, using menacing shadow productions of doctors who threatened to surgically separate them. Another creative scene involves a vaudevillian portrayal of both girls in bed with one man, singing the bawdy number, "One Plus One Equals Three," just one of many references to the salacious view of the twins by the media.

Whether wearing tattered dresses or sumptuous, sparkling gowns, all designed by Paul Tazewell, Padgett and Davie are always riveting to watch. In the final scene, voluntarily facing yet another arena of exploitation, the twins reflect sadly, "Are we ever to learn/why we've lived as two." Thanks to Krieger's memorable melodies and the stellar cast, the audience will be thinking about the same thing.


AP
11/17/2014

New York Daily News: "'Side Show,' theater review"

For a musical about true-life conjoined twins Daisy and Violet Hilton, the strange and stirring “Side Show” has a nagging habit of losing its grip. Chalk it up to dramatic inconsistencies and thin characterizations.

Even so, there’s a lot to like about the revised vision of this Depression-era biography that arrives on Broadway following a run in 2013 at the La Jolla Playhouse and earlier this year at the Kennedy Center.

Beyond a laudably offbeat topic, two very good leading ladies and a shadowy, evocative design, this show’s most stunning jewels are brilliant songs by composer Henry Krieger and lyricist Bill Russell, who revamped the book with director Bill Condon.

The voluptuous, lushly arranged score (new songs have been added and some have been dropped from the 1997 Broadway premiere, which ran 91 performances) boasts dark, moody streaks like “Come Look at the Freaks,” the opening song setting a creepy tone. There are cheeky and chipper vaudeville novelty numbers, like “One Plus One Equals Three” and “Stuck With You,” performed by the girls at a glue factory (wink, wink). “The Interview,” which finds the girls’ fame ascending, recalls a scene from “Dreamgirls,” another Krieger show.

And there are three throbbing power duets the Hiltons belt that are worth the price of admission. Emily Padgett, as the sassy, extroverted Daisy, and Erin Davie, as shy, shrinking Violet, bring these songs to life with colorful and crystalline sopranos and urgency and feeling to match.

“Feelings You’ve Got to Hide,” about stifling love, is shot through with sadness — and comes closest to giving the show a universality. Who hasn’t felt thwarted by unrequited love.

“Who Will Love Me As I Am?” is a rafter-quaking first-act finale with a title that speaks for itself. Ditto the 11 o’clock heartbreaker “I Will Never Leave You.” That was, obviously, true for these sibs, whose lives were fused.

The men in their lives aren’t nearly as true. Terry (Ryan Silverman), a press agent who sings a long song about loving Daisy, and Buddy (Matthew Hydzik), who proposes marriage to Violet, prove tragically unreliable. Sir (Robert Joy), the side-show owner who wants to keep the girls enslaved, and Jake (David St. Louis), a caretaker, present other problems.

Despite its unusual material, this reimagined “Side Show” remains standard singing bio. Par for the course, the tale of two long-forgotten curios zips along quickly but feels like a lot is missing — and what’s here is sanitized. The musical ends in 1932 — almost four decades before the sibs died at age 60. There’s little room for any surprises or larger commentary, although the show flirts with the idea of everyone being aliens.

We take a journey with these dreamgirls, but there’s no truly satisfying payoff — or a portrait that goes deeper than the skin.


New York Daily News
11/17/2014

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