I just didn't feel compelled to see this with the original cast, despite my admiration for Jessie Mueller, but I've taken some time with the cast recording in the last year or so, and I really think seeing it with Sara Bareilles is a way to make it extra powerful.
The strengths of the score to WAITRESS didn't come across on the first listen. I think the more conventional songs -- like the opening number, "Opening Up," or "It Only Takes a Taste" -- made me feel like Ms. Bareilles was doing her best to smush her pop-song sensibility into the genre rules of musical theater. But it's clear that this woman has a brave streak in her, a creative spark that's willing to break rules, and that's why some of the less conventional songs are now my favorites, especially "When He Sees Me." Ms. Bareilles has a sense of RHYTHM that's nearly unheard on Broadway these days (save Lin-Manuel), and considering what a great harmonist she also is, I think we've yet to hear her greatest work.
So, here's hoping for more.
Super happy to hear that the audience was tipping young. Those teenage girls have kept WICKED open on Broadway for more than a decade, and I suspect they're the same fan-bloc that's keeping WAITRESS in the black. Good for them!!!