Monday, September 23, 2013

Review of Evita (Broadway in Chicago)

Once upon a time I went to show and it was called Evita. The lyrics were by Tim Rice and the music was by Andrew Lloyd Webber. It was directed by Michael Grandage and the Choreography was by Rob Ashford. It was about Eva Perón (Caroline Bowman) who was the president's wife in Argentina and what was good about her and what was bad about her. Like she gave away lots of money to the poor but she might have taken some of the money all for herself. She picked a good husband (Sean MacLaughlin), but she went through a lot of affairs before that. It was around World War II, so there are a lot of things going on at this time. This show was pretty good, but I thought there should have been more talking and less songs because then you could really get to know Evita.

There was a song called, "Eva, Beware the City." When Evita went to the city she was in love with this lounge singer named Magaldi (Christopher Johnstone). I don't think he was as good a match for her as Perón. And he kept saying, the city is too dangerous for you because you are a woman. It wasn't true, because women can live in the city. I live in the city! My mom loves in the city! A bunch of women that I know live in the city! I liked this song because it had great choreography. I really liked when they had little dance parts when Evita went with one man and then another man and then another man. It told me that she really liked any kind of man, no matter who they were, no matter what they did; she liked men.

"Good Night and Thank You" kind of made me feel uncomfortable because Evita was having a bunch of affairs with all these men who came to her door. They showed that she was having the affair on stage by going into this little room that was on stage, and wearing these little bedroom robes. Most of the men gave her something; like some of the men gave her bedroom robes, some of the men gave her chocolates, and some of them gave her flowers. She was interested in the men and the presents I think. Che (Josh Young) was singing with the men even though he wasn't having an affair with her himself. But he still kind of felt what it was like, even though it wasn't happening to him. He was kind of telling the men, "I'm sorry about this, but it happens." That's basically what he said to every one of them. I thought that Che was a really great singer. He could hold high notes a really long time and wasn't like some kinds of high singing that are ear-piercing and unpleasant. I did like the character. Even though he was against Evita, he was the character you were always with. You kind of question Evita for the things that she had done just because you knew this other character. When Che didn't like her, we didn't like her, and when Che liked her, we liked her.

There was a really great song called "Another Suitcase in Another Hall." It happens when Evita is coming home with Perón and finds Perón's mistress (Krystina Alabado) and tells her to get out. I liked the song because the singer was really amazing. You felt it was something that really happened. You didn't think, "this is just a song"; you thought, "this really happened to this girl." You really felt sorry for that character. You kind of liked her better than Evita, even though she wasn't as big a part. The song made be think differently about a lot of characters. Like Evita throwing her out made me feel like Evita was a horrible person. And the narrator Che I didn't like at first, but then he helped this girl and it made me think differently about him.

There are some people who like villains better than the heroes; like my three favorite characters from Batman are Catwoman, Harley Quinn, and Poison Ivy. Evita kind of is a villain because she does bad things, but she is also a hero. She was good with government stuff and she helped the poor through really hard times. People loved her because she said, "I want you to be like me and I want to be like you. I'm not better than you guys. I think all of us are equal." I think she wasn't just saying that. She used to be very poor, then she fell in love with a man and got rich. But she still didn't always think of herself as better than everybody else or upper class. "Don't Cry for Me, Argentina" was about how Evita didn't want people to think of her as upper class. She wanted them to think of her as just like them. I really liked that song. I thought it was really pretty and really well sung.

"Rainbow Tour" was about how Evita was going on tour to say "Hi" to different countries. And it started out well in Spain but it didn't go so well in any of the other countries. Especially Britain. She got on these suitcases when she got angry at Britain and she threw them around. I think they wanted to show you what Evita was like when she was angry. That kind of made me feel sorry for her, even though she wasn't exactly such a good person. You kind of did feel sorry for her when she died, but I was angry at the writers for making Perón say this giant "Noooooo!" when Eva was dying. I thought that was kind of cheesy and it made me mad for the rest of the play.

People who would like this show are people who like drama, great singing, great choreography, and suitcases. People should go see this show if they are interested in learning about Evita and Perón and what she did for her lifetime. I think it is really good because it makes you discover what it is like to have your favorite character be a minor role and the main character be an interesting character but not be very lovable.

Photos: Richard Termine

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