Rodgers and Hammersteins Oklahoma London Stage Revival
Maureen Lipman (Actor), Hugh Jackman (Actor), Trevor Nunn (Director)
Broadway Musicals DVD
BM01 Broadway Musicals DVD - Maureen Lipman (Actor), Hugh Jackman (Actor), Trevor Nunn (Director) - Rodgers and Hammersteins Oklahoma London Stage Revival - Broadway Musicals DVD - 2 disc set. When Mary Rodgers, daughter of the composer Richard Rodgers, was reported as saying she never wanted to see another Oklahoma., it was her way of paying the highest tribute to Trevor Nunn's production at the Royal National Theatre which was subsequently taken into the studio and filmed. The camera follows the playgoers into the auditorium of the Olivier where in their company we watch the show and applaud the numbers as the real thing. Nunn treats Rodgers and Hammerstein's first collaboration with the utmost seriousness, restoring the full text so that it comes across as a drama indebted to Eugene O'Neill. Although Oklahoma. unfolds at a leisurely pace, it is extraordinary how one is drawn into the drama under Nunn's direction. There's seldom a wish for true locations as the pace picks up and we move into the claustrophobic company of Judd Fry in his riveting encounter with the cowboy Curly. The close-up camera work affords an experience the theatre can't bring and also pays handsome dividends in appreciating Susan Stroman's intricate and lively choreography. Her dancers are a fine team, notably Jimmy Johnston who is outstanding as Will Parker leading the Kansas City ensemble. Hugh Jackman (X-Men) as Curly matches him in vocal prowess and looks, and Shuler Hensley sings the tricky role of Judd Fry very well. It's harder to place Peter Polycarpou's Pedlar, a considerably larger role than in the film version, whose accent strays from London's East End to the plains of Europe. Maureen Lipman, rightly deemed the lynchpin of the musical by Nunn, is a joy to watch as Aunt Eller. Laurey (Josefina Gabrielle) and Ado Annie (Vicki Simon) are good but not special. Aside from an abrupt start to Act Two and the occasional voice off microphone, the production sounds good with a larger orchestra present than in the theatre. An Oklahoma. on an epic scale. Hugh Jackman and Maureen Lipman star in the multi-award-winning Royal National Theatre production of this beloved Broadway favorite. Songs include Oh What a Beautiful Morning, The Surrey with the Fringe on Top , the title classic and more. 1999-color-3 hrs-NR-fullscreen. The 1999 London production of Oklahoma., directed by Trevor Nunn with choreography by Susan Stroman, was the first major departure ever from the original Joshua Logan-Agnes De Mille production of 1943. It was a gamble that paid off big, for the performance recorded for posterity on this DVD is absolutely brilliant--funny, riveting, and deeply poignant. The dancing is astonishing, and the beloved Rodgers and Hammerstein songs have never sounded so good. Nunn and Stroman know how to stage each number for maximum dramatic effect, so that the songs come across less as songs than as dramatic monologues in music--which is, of course, exactly what Rodgers and Hammerstein wanted. I grew up working in local summer stock and community theatre--went on to major in theatre in undergrad before going to grad school for something more consistent with regular work. I worked on or was in a couple of productions of Oklahoma, and have seen several--some great, some not. I have always appreciated the wonderful music and the nearly operatic tone of the show. But before tonight, I had never seen this theatrical classic ACTED. It was spellbinding. I've been a fan of Rodgers and Hammerstein for years, but Oklahoma was far from my favorite RandH show. The fifties Hollywood version always dissapointed me, I always thought the characters were so cardboard and one dimensional and the story so trite. Then one night I caught the second act of the London Stage Revival during a PBS pledge drive and had to get this. This is the reason I love musicals. This version enchanted me. The story was ACTED and acted so well. The dancing was rousing, robust and masculine. I haven't seen anything to top Seven Brides for Seven Brothers until now. I defy anyone to declare that the dancing in The Farmer and the Cowhand is sissified or to be able to sit still watching it. All the performers are wonderful, but Skyler Hensly is the quintesential Jud and Hugh Jackman is the essential Curly. He may not sing as well as Gordon McCrae but he makes up for it in making Curly a real character. Run and get this version.
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