Tuesday, June 25, 2013

theatre review NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT, Broadway, June 13

Having enjoyed the Gershwin musical Nice Work If You Can Get It when we saw it in previews last year, we decided to go back and see it again before it closed.  It not only gave us a chance to see Matthew Broderick in the male lead role again but also see Jessie Mueller who took over for Kelli O'Hara as the lead female role.

Mueller seems to be the Broadway "it" girl of the moment, having appeared in four high calibre New York productions in the last 18 months.  She co-starred with Harry Connick Jr in the 2011 Broadway revival of On a Clear Day You Can See Forever and received a Tony nomination for her efforts.  She followed that by playing Cinderella in the Shakespeare in the Park production of Into the Woods last Summer and then appeared as Helena Landless in the Broadway revival of The Mystery of Edwin Drood last Winter.  She basically hasn't stopped working.  

Her turn in Nice Work is on par with her other performances and while she might not have any scenery to chew in this show like she did in Drood she actually comes across better than O'Hara did.  The role is a tomboy bootlegger and O'Hara is a little too refined to fully get that across whereas Mueller once again shows her skills to not only accurately portray a character unlike any we've seen her play before but her vocal abilities are truly special.  She actually sounds a lot like Doris Day, which based on her past shows I know is a style she is only incorporating for this role and it works sublimely. I expect even greater things from Mueller in the future. 

Jessie Mueller and Matthew Broderick
Broderick is still having a grand time in the show, though it did seem like he was joking around with the rest of the cast more than usual.  But that was probably due to the fact that they only had four more shows left in the run.

The rest of the featured cast is intact from last year with Tony winners Judy Kaye and Michael McGrath still joyous in their roles.  Jennifer Laura Thompson is still a hoot as Broderick's third finance/wife and gets plenty of laughs in her attempts at modern dance.  Also, Chris Sullivan and Robyn Hurder are even more delightful than before as the mismatched chorus girl and big lug who find a mutual attraction to each other.

For my overview of the plot of the show read my review of the preview we attended last year here.  

The show ended its Broadway run last week.  With the high amount of comedy and those gorgeous Gershwin tunes I expect this show will see plenty of regional productions in years to come. 

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