Thursday, August 11, 2005

Reaching For The Sky
With Short But Well-Shaped Arms

Last night, a lovely surprise: Bart & I met at TKTS and got half-price tickets to see the acclaimed "Light In The Piazza." This show, based on a novella about an American mother and daugther that travel to Florence in 1953, was aptly described by the Times as "a real human being (materializing) in a mainstream musical, an environment that has become increasingly hostile to such life forms." The old "Italian dreamboat boy falls for shy American woman" has a touching twist: the woman is a 'special child,' with a body that's 26 but emotions that are 10, thanks to a pony that kicked her in the end. The score is lovely, the acting superb, the sets, costumes and lighting are worthy of old Douglas Sirk films. "Light" has its flaws, often falling short of its ambitious aims. I still prefer drama to musicals. But it was very worthwhile at half-price on a cool, summer weeknight. Below: the movie poster from a 1961 film version of the same source material featuring Olivia DeHavilland and the long-forgotten Yvette Mimieux and George Hamilton as the young lovers. (here's NYT review of the film)

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