Last night Josh and I saw the new Broadway musical [title of show], now in previews at the Lyceum Theater and opening this Friday, and we fell completely in love. Not just any kind of love, mind you, but head-over-heels, laugh-out-loud, wanna-cry, punch-drunk love.
[title of show] is the story of two best friends, Hunter and Jeff, living in New York’s Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood and working dead-end jobs while trying to write a musical that means something, and all in less than three weeks, before the submission deadline for a theater festival. The musical itself becomes the writing of the musical (yes, it’s all very meta) as Hunter and Jeff reel in two lovely lady actress friends, Susan and Heidi—and voila!— everybody is gathered around in a cramped Manhattan living room. All that’s left to do is to write the damn show.
What follows over the next ninety minutes is the hilarious, thoughtful, pee-your-pants, creative, funny, brave, irreverent, touching, honest, guts-on-the-table, thoroughly amusing story of the creation of their musical, the ensuing festival performances, then the off-Broadway run, the effects of their new-found success on the show and their friendships and, finally, the move of the little show that could to Broadway. (And thank god it did. If one more damn juke box musical opens on the Great White Way—but then, [title of show] covers that, too, and is much funnier about it.)
In the last minutes of the show, after going on the whole roller coaster adventure with Hunter, Jeff, Heidi and Susan (and really, you do feel like you personally have gone along with them on the whole journey), and after laughing more than we had in ages, a perfect, final moment comes together which, holding us firmly in its grip, had us crying. We got up on our feet with the rest of the sold-out crowd and the applause and whistling continued until long after the curtain came down.
The bottom line, folks? [title of show] is a must-see, destination, cannot-miss Broadway experience. Check it out. The only question left is what the cast will wear to the Tonys.