So I’ve been watching warily as a Chaplin musical gets ready to open on Broadway in a couple of weeks. I became aware of it a few years ago when it started out at the La Jolla Playhouse then titled Limelight and was not overly impressed by the clips I saw. The title references Chaplin’s late film about an old clown and I feared the musical would simply be maudlin and not capture the fun and wit that I love about Chaplin at his best. However, it has been retitled and seems to be a bit more upbeat now from what I’ve seen, so fingers crossed that it works!
Meanwhile I recommend heading over here to EW to see an interesting video about their work on recreating the iconic bread roll dance (which one of my students did very nicely at the end of OUR Chaplinesque movie). And then there is the witty video ad for the show. The guy playing Chaplin looks not bad (if a little on the sweet side without to much evidence yet of the devilish quality that is part of what makes the original so great), but I still am skittish about the overall direction the musical will take. There are many ways to consider Chaplin (I’m working on one) and I like some of them more than others. We shall see.