Don’t Keep Your Distance: Evita Opens On Broadway

Evita opened at the Marquis Theatre on April 5 to mostly positive reviews (check out the video clip below), with special recognition given to director Michael Grandage’s staging, not to mention the performance of a certain Ricky Martin. Congrats to set and costume designer Christopher Oram, lighting designer Neil Austin, projection designer Zachary Borovay, and sound designer Mick Potter.

Neil, Zachary, and Mick will all be featured at this year’s Live Design Broadway Master Classes, as will this production of Evita. The classes will be held May 18-24 in New York City. Click here for more information.

Here are some sample reviews from the critics:

“[Director Michael] Grandage and Rob Ashford, the choreographer, have worked together so closely on Evita that you'd think the whole show had been staged by one prodigiously gifted man. Christopher Oram's monumental sets are satisfyingly old-fashioned, and Neil Austin has lighted them in a spectacular manner that put me in mind, appropriately enough, of Triumph of the Will. Never are you in doubt that the subject of Evita is the horrors that ensue when power joins hands with glamour ("Instead of a government we had a stage / Instead of ideas, a prima donna's rage"). Needless to say, it would have taken a Sondheim—or a Kurt Weill—to do justice to so complex a theme, but Evita comes closer than you'd expect.” --Terry Teachout, Wall Street Journal

“The real star, however, is Grandage, who brings his own stamp to a show forever associated with stagecraft supremo Harold Prince. No director can entirely correct the imbalance of Evita…..That said, Grandage’s driving staging could hardly be more impressive. From designer Christopher Oram’s stately sets and superb 1930s and ‘40s costumes to Neil Austin’s celestial lighting, this is a ravishing spectacle.” -- David Rooney, Hollywood Reporter

“Christopher Oram's balconies, palace facade and a piazza – all warmly lit by Neil Austin – are stunningly lifelike and rich. They even move forward or back to highlight moments. The use of two levels highlights the divide between the unwashed and the awash in jewels.” -- Mark Kennedy, AP

Director Michael Grandage and his designers cleverly fill in gaps and add texture. The set evokes a Buenos Aires in faded gray (even the pink Casa Rosada). A haze looms in shards of light. It all hints at the sinister side of Peron glamour. Such smart detail is a hallmark of Grandage’s all-muscle and ever-fluid vision.” --Joe Dziemianowicz, NY Daily News

And here is a clip of scenes from the show, from Hollywood Reporter:


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