I love Frankie Valli and The four seasons. I love their music, I admire their story and I am obsessed with their broadway musical. However, I am not as in love with the show “Bye Bye Baby”, a tribute to Frankie and the seasons…
I attended the opening night of this show and I was so excited. My thinking went as follows; how can you go wrong with such iconic music and such an inspiring story? Well….Um… apparently you can. Now let me begin by saying I admire any performer who is willing to make himself so vulnerable in front of an audience nights on end. To be an entertainer is an extremely difficult job. People are going to like you and other people are going to criticize you. It is part of the process. The trick is to take the criticism and use it to you advantage. Learn from it and improve.
Having said that, my criticism on this production is more towards the behind the scenes team than the performers. Creating a production is much like an iceberg. The audience sees the tip and are spared of all the blood, sweat and tears that happen before the performers take the stage. Your job as a director is to guide the performers. You need to be able to show them the right path before they can display that to us, the audience. Your job as a choreographer is to create steps that showcase the performers talent and that compliment the story that you are trying to portray. Your job as a musical supervisor is to create a composition that compliments the singers voice and range. AND your job as a producer is to make sure that your crew are doing the best that they can so that you and your brand can put out the best show possible so that audiences CAN’T GET ENOUGH!
Now tell me, why would you not do your job? My biggest issue with this performance was that it felt like no one had put effort into making sure that everyone was prepped and ready to go. It felt like there had been no final checks to make sure that each performer was ready for the opening show. Now the show had it’s moments. The audience were able to recognize the songs that they love and sing along and there is no doubt that the performers were talented. They just were not guided in the right direction. I mean dialogue mishaps happen but forgetting the song title you are about to sing? It just goes to show that planning and preparation makes a world of difference.
I want to give this show the benefit of the doubt and blame it on nerves perhaps? But I feel like it would then be a lot to prove, and after all first impressions stick like glue… I hope that as the show progresses the performances improve because the music is really beautiful and to not give it justice would just be a waste…