"Titanic" last night
Last Edit: PlayWiz 03:15 pm EDT 06/20/24
Posted by: PlayWiz 02:59 pm EDT 06/20/24

Let me add my voice to the many who recommended this production, which while more of a staged concert, focuses more on the humanity involved and puts the score front and center quite movingly. The cast was wonderful and the orchestra thrilling. I was struck by the moving simple melodic leitmotif, used much more in the first act, which to me recalled simpler times and more of a Golden Age kind of songwriting. A fellow singer told me at intermission that it was a pleasure to hear some legit singing on stage; I remarked there wasn't very much on display in the current Broadway season based on what was heard during the Tony Awards. Ramin Karimloo's more contemporary-sounding higher range in his singing was effective in his solos. But one standout among many in this production was Nathan Salstone, who I wasn't previously familiar with, as Frederick Fleet, who blames himself late in the show for the ship's disaster; his vocal tone and truly lovely vocal line really was beautifully haunting and stood out, and the sopranos' high notes sounded great in the outstanding choral numbers.

Bonnie Milligan, in the tradition of Victoria Clark, was quite funny as Alice Beane, always a social climber, wanting to move up in society, and with her husband realizing, not long before being parted, that they aren't really the best match, since she obviously won't be pleased by what he can provide for her. That was kind of sad by itself. The duet of Mr. and Mrs. Straus done by Judy Kuhn and Chip Zien was rightfully a highlight of the evening as well. Interestingly, I found myself more choked up by the end of the first Act, which focused more on the hopes and dreams of these passengers and crew and knowing what lie in store for them as they, of course, aren't aware, than I was in the second act, though that was still very effective. That big ragtime number towards the end of the first act works wonderfully and effectively in contrasting their carefree happiness before what is to shortly transpire. A cast and orchestra this big and accomplished is really a rarity nowadays, and there were TDF tickets available as of earlier today, so I'd recommend you see it, if not jump aboard.
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