Saturday, October 8, 2011
I've always been one of the few who likes Andrew Lloyd Webber. I think his songs are somewhat mediocre at times, but their extremeley beautiful and sometimes very captivating. I was never too in to Evita until last summer, when I really fell love in it.
It tells the real-life story of Eva Peron, a woman who grew up extremely poor in the country of Argentina,but her ambition to get herself out of the gutter took her on a mountain-climb where she became an actress, a radio star, a singer, a model, and, eventually, the First Lady Of Argentina. I find the story quite compelling and interesting and I think the adaptation is quite great.
First, of course, the music: I find the score overall very strong, though there are some mediocre moments such as The Art Of The Possible (A very dull, monotounus song, except for Eva's Part). The rest of the songs are fairly great, although I feel some are rather badly written, but still listenable and not horrible. Just, Webber writes a great song, but includes some mediocre verses that drag the song down a little. The song Eva, Beware Of The City is a teriffic number, but the chorus parts for Eva's family are simply not very good, plus the singers aren't that pleasant to listen to. But the best songs in this are probably Buenos Aires (A very zesty, fiery song, full of life),I'd Be Surprisingly Good For You (Quite entrancing and enjoyable), Another Suitcase In Another Hall (So sad, yet great), A New Argentina (Powerful!), Don't Cry For Me Argentina (Of Course!), Rainbow High (A personal favorite, such energy!), The Actress Hasn't Learned The Lines/The Money Kept Rolling In (Great, unusual too!).
Of course, Patti Lupone was the perfect Eva and it shows on the cast-album. It's a star-making part, and she gives it such power, and strength. Lupone states that it was a huge challenge to play the part, given how hard the score is, plus no one ever gave her any support or direction on how to play her. I find the latter part hard to believe, given I've been in a musical (maybe not a professional one, but still) and it's impossible that no one would help you play a part. But anyway, Lupone was amazing in the role, and won a well-deserved Tony for it. As for Mandy Patinkin, he is Che, but I don't really care for him. He is fantastic, but I just don't like his style. It's much better here then in S.I.T.P.W.G though, and I've grown to like him.
So, I highly recommend looking into this show if you haven't, and anything by Ms. Lupone in it, though this is clearly her best work.