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Posts Tagged ‘Barri McPherson’

Not to be confused with the film of the same name, this 2004 Broadway musical has a heart-warming pedigree; it was written by Barri McPherson after she reconnected and took in Mark Schoenfeld, an old friend she found sleeping rough. Unsurprisingly, its love story is framed and told by a group of homeless street musicians.

American musician Taylor falls in love with Faith when in Paris, but returns to the US, leaving behind half a tune and a pregnant lover. When Faith dies her daughter, named Brooklyn after her dad’s home, goes to an orphanage where she learns to sing. Years later, a hugely successful star, she uses a visit to NYC to try and find her father, armed with the half tune.

The street setting and pop-rock score contrasts with a somewhat schmaltzy fairytale story; in this way it reminded me of Rent. Justin Williams’ urban wasteland design serves it well. I like the songs, played superbly by Richard Baker’s band, but more vocal restraint and less volume would have served the lyrics better. They were sung well, but more as pop songs than musical theatre numbers there to tell the story. That said, the five performers are all excellent.

It was a bit overblown for me. I think the material would have benefitted from more subtlety, though there was enough to enjoy and admire to reward the trip to Greenwich.

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