I was invited to a performance of the show to see what the former reality show star brings to the Broadway stage this time around.
The musical starts well enough with Jekyll singing to his father whom he believes has evil in his soul, thus causing a mental illness.
Maroulis, who came in sixth on American Idol, makes an honest attempt at the title roles. Despite a few acting shortcomings, his voice is strong and exactly what you expect from a rock tenor.
One notable instance appears in the piece “Confrontation”. Originally this “duet” was performed live with Jekyll and Hyde being sung by the same actor. In the revival the part of Hyde was prerecorded, sung excellently by Maroulis with his full rock chops on display.
All of the popular songs from the original score are performed including “This is the Moment,” which I found to be phoned in, making me feel nothing. This piece is the turning point and arguably the most important part of the musical. It’s when Jekyll decides to finally go forth with his experiment, thus inevitably transforming him into Hyde. I certainly enjoyed his performance a lot more than the Sebastian Bach or David Hasselhoff rendition. However, it does not hold a candle to the Rob Evan interpretation on the album Jekyll and Hyde: Resurrection.
The two female leads, Deborah Cox and Teal Wicks (Wicked and on TV The Good Wife) are both stellar. Their performance of “In His Eyes” was inspired and it made me want to see more of them. Cox and Maroulis had outstanding chemistry in “Dangerous Game” and I really enjoyed the blocking of the number.
Overall, Jekyll and Hyde is a good revival. The cast puts forth a fine effort. TV was well represented with cast members appearing in American Idol, Law and Order: SVU, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, and The Good Wife. Wildhorn’s score is magnetic and engaging, with melodies and rhythms that left the audience humming.
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Mike Donnarummo is a music teacher and professional musician living and working in Manhattan. He owns a music-teaching studio in Connecticut. His primary instrument is the piano. http://www.MVDMusicStudio.com