Tag Archives: Marcia Milgrom Dodge
Much of the audience at the Maltz Jupiter Theatre’s opening night of Jersey Boys was its traditional well-heeled well-coiffed crowd. But their increasingly unfettered applause, then cheers, then standing ovation while clapping to their music reflected a specific message. “Our time, our music, our youth mattered.”
When director-choreographer Marcia Milgrom Dodge agreed to lead the Maltz Jupiter Theatre’s edition of the much-seen Jersey Boys, the challenge was to invest the familiar production with a fresh approach and unearth facets that the show’s fans haven’t seen before.
The musical may have been around for decades, but Riverside’s triumphant production of Evita proves that the show has a strong universality that rings as loudly today as it did 40 years ago. The show brims with exhilarating invention and the fresh point of view by its director/choreographer Marcia Milgrom Dodge.
The perennial tear-jerking Steel Magnolias, now at the Maltz Jupiter Theatre ought to work, but doesn’t succeed this time.. But those objectivity. Those seeking theater that provokes or stimulates, that questions our biases or expands our worldviews — catnip to critics and adventurous audiences — will find little nourishment in Robert Harling’s provincial 1987 dramedy.
One pleasure of a theater critic’s job are these year-end retrospectives that require looking back at reviews and be reminded, “Oh, yeah, that was really great. And right, there was that. And how could I forget that one?”
Merman. Lupone. Daly. Lansbury. Taking not a scintilla away from those iconic performances, you have never seen a Mama Rose like the one Vicki Lewis incarnates in Maltz Jupiter Theatre’s unique but masterful take on Gypsy.
When a theater revives the musical Gypsy as the Maltz Jupiter Theatre is doing this month, there is always the ghost in the room. So the challenge for director Marcia Milgrom Dodge and her favorite leading lady Vicki Lewis is to preserve the iconic tropes while putting their unique fresh stamp on a work.
Here’s a look back at 2014 including a very subjective subjunctive reductive list of outstanding shows, performances and developments guaranteed to make someone unhappy they were not on the list. Take comfort in that there was so much good work that this is the crème de la crème de menthe.
Director Marcia Milgrom Dodge triumphed reinventing Hello Dolly! in 2012; this time she hasn’t been quite as unassailably successful, but the overall evening grows on you as it swells into a moving second act, in part because the music, lyrics and script are so strong that it cannot possibly fail when executed by such a first-rate cast and creative team.
Not taking a thing away from Sondheim or anyone else who followed them, but the Maltz Jupiter Theatre’s glorious production of The King and I reminds you that when it’s done right, nobody can touch Rodgers and Hammerstein for well-crafted musical theater marked by heartfelt lyrics and soaring melody.