Some Musicals are so complete in themselves that what we see today is substantially what was seen originally. Others have important elements which must be retained but the whole is less important than some constituent parts so a revival can ‘rediscover’ the whole shape and feel of the original in a completely new way.
So it is with Pippin, a revival which has just hit Broadway to widespread aclaim. The parts that are the same are the songs and most of the original and much revered Bob Fosse choreography.
The adventures of the hero as he matures are now re-imagined as acts in a circus, the whole of which is superbly controlled by a Ringmaster who becomes the main character.
Brought together by Diane Paulus who did the revival of ‘Hair’ the concept of the circus gives a new coherence to Pippin and allows the introduction of a thrilling combination of song, dance and acrobatics.
The actors who play all the main parts are excellent, truly excellent but in some ways the real star is this artful mix of dance and choreography which explodes onto the stage with color, athleticism and grace.
This is a wonderful musical, fully in the Broadway tradition of glitz, glamor, wonderful principals and standout sets but adding this extraordinary new element, imagined by a Canadian troupe called Les 7 Doights de la main which fills the whole stage space with soaring bodies and adds a whole new meaning to the idea of a multi level set. If you love Broadway you will love this. LIKE big grand Broadway Musicals