Review: Young Frankenstein Musical at The Winspear Opera House

5 01 2011

Last night opened the run of The New Mel Brooks Musical:  Young Frankenstein at the AT&T Performing Art Center’s Winspear Opera House.  And you bet it was an awesome freaking show!

Christopher Ryan (Dr. Frankenstein), Synthia Link (Inga), and Cory English (Igor).  Photo by Paul Kolnik / http://www.paulkolnik.com

It wouldn’t be Mel Brooks if you weren’t giggling, drooling and then giggling some more.  Well don’t worry if you like the raunchy and naughty humor of the original film then you’ll LOVE the Musical.

The Musical held a solid run on Broadway from October 11th of 2007 until its final show on  January 4th of 2009.  The usual Mel Brooks team of Thomas Meehan (Writer) and Susan Stroman (Director and Choreographer) came back after the incredible success of The Producers Musical to bring Young Frankenstein to the stage.  The musical’s tour started in September of 2009 and ran till August 8th of 2010.   It was re-opened September 12th, 2010 with a new cast and will run until March of 2011.

Last night showcased that even away from the comfort of Broadway the cast and crew were prepared for an amazing show.   Whether they are welcoming you to “The Happiest Town In Town”, asking you to “Join the Family Business”, or titillating you with a quick “Roll in The Hay” its obvious this show is world class.

It would be to much to comment on all the wonderful performances and so I’d rather just highlight a few standouts.

Cory English as Igor.  Photo by Paul Kolnik / http://www.paulkolnik.com

What would Young Frankenstein be with out the adorable moving-hunch-back assistant Igor?  Cory English originally replaced Christopher Fitzgerald on the Broadway version of the musical on November 25th of 2008 and the little guy hasn’t lost a step.  It would be hard for Cory to replicate the amazing performance Marty Feldman gave in the original movie, but the essence and humor is obviously present in Cory’s performance.  “Together again” is one of the few sequences where only two performers complete an entire scene (the other main one being when the Monster visits the Blind Hermit) and its flawlessly done by Cory.  In fact, Cory could have done this sequence all by himself and captured just as many laughs and applause.  To be honest the moment of Igor “sitting” down may have gotten the loudest and most heartfelt laugh of any in the entire musical.  Such a poignant scene of a master and his loyal assistant sitting as equals and of course Igor ends it with a great joke about his wonderful posture.  No doubt about it the little hunchback is all the reason you need to purchase a ticket.

Joanna Glushak as Frau Blucher.  Photo by Paul Kolnik / http://www.paulkolnik.com

Easily one of the classic moments from the movie and so beautifully brought back with the musical is how the mere mention of Frau Blucher’s name frightens the horses (whether on stage or not).   Though the horses were frightened you’ll find yourself mesmerized by Joanna Glushak’s performance as Frau.  That’s pretty impressive when you realize Cloris Leachman’s amazing performance in the film and Andrea Martin’s great run on Broadway as Frau.  “He Vas My Boyfriend” was easily one of the best scenes from last night.

Joanna Glushak as Frau Blucher.  Photo by Paul Kolnik / http://www.paulkolnik.com

Joanna captures the fear created by Frau but she’s also just so darn endearing as a character.  Her introduction of Dr. Frankenstein at Loews Transylvania Theatre was flawlessly done and easily one of the funniest “silent” moments.  Frau was alone on stage and waiting for a better applause from the audience and her “waiting” was just so amazingly funny.  Genius scene!

By far Frau and Igor were my favorites.  Though the beautiful Synthia Link is just so darn beautiful as Inga.  “Listen to Your Heart” was one of the more “naughty” songs and the moment Synthia kicked off her heels and did the splits, on the same platform as the Monster arose from, the audience and Dr. Frankenstein were completely captivated.  I know I wasn’t the only one that let out a loud gasp of air when she “landed” her split.  Titillating indeed.  And just to have another peak at the beautiful Synthia Link as Inga.   Dr. Frankenstein sums it up well.

Dr. Frankenstein:  “What Knockers”

Inga:  “Oh, thank you Doctor.”.

Cory English as Igor.  Photo by Paul Kolnik / http://www.paulkolnik.com

To complete the joke here is the best photo of Mrs. Link’s knockers.

Christopher Ryan (Dr. Frankenstein) and Synthia Link (Inga).  Photo by Paul Kolnik / http://www.paulkolnik.com

This is a must see and if you’re looking for a new year’s resolution.  Well GO SEE YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN AT THE WINSPEAR!!

Though make sure you leave the kiddos at home.

To purchase tickets just click here.

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6 01 2011

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