Ok, she can't act, let's get that out of the way up front. And her broad American accent made her stick out even worse.
But let's face it, she's appropriately younger and cuter than old lady Julie Andrews was in the film, has a half-decent though unremarkable voice, and the rest of the cast was terrific. Plus it was just so great to see ANYTHING live! I'm hoping this is the start of a return to the 1950's live stage play scenario, musical and otherwise. It got solid numbers, so I'm not the only one who got into it as a refreshing counterpoint to the same old fare.
Oddly, the audio was messed up. There was almost zero bass (had to crank my sub to the max), there was considerable ambient noise, and quiet musical passages were badly distorted, though normal volume songs were clean. Somebody blew it bigtime for a show where music and audio were king.
It was weird to have a live musical staged for a live audience sans the audience's energy. Sapped some of the life out of it. Plus it was shot like a movie on a giant sound stage rather than on a standard theater proscenium. Remains to be seen if that was a good idea. I'd definitely opt for a live orchestra AND live audience shot on a real stage with a couple of handheld cameras off stage giving you some of the energy and excitement of the staging at the same time as seeing the production from the audience POV. I've seen a few theatrical shows on PBS shot like that and they were awesome.
Overall a C+, marked down mainly for the lead's bad high school acting performance and non-standout singing. She got blown out of the water vocally by Audra MacDonald the head nun and the Cap's sparkling and mesmerizing GF Laura Benanti who was kind of channeling Julie Andrews herself--plus she ironically had played Maria before. And the awkward compromises in the production with no live musicians or audience. But it was still worth the trip.
Edited by Maruuk, 08 December 2013 - 05:19 AM.