As is the case with a lot of stage productions these days, a new musical adaptation of a major motion picture is currently playing off-Broadway. The show is Little Miss Sunshine and, thankfully, it shines!
We had never seen the film, so we went in with little to low expectations. We knew the production has an all-star cast made up of Broadways brightest. BUT, we were very concerned that James Lapine wrote the book and directed the show. He's a legend but a dinosaur! He's old and the most recent show he directed, the new Broadway revival of Annie, feels old. Uninspired.
Thankfully, Little Miss Sunshine feels super fresh! Young! Fun! And HEARTWARMING!!!
The show, with music and lyrics by William Finn, has been completely reworked and recast since it premiered at the La Jolla Playhouse two years ago. And, from what we hear, SUCH smart choices were made! Close to an hour of material was cut from the show! As it is currently playing at the Second Stage Theater, it is presented in one tight act without intermission.
Engaging from start to finish!
Almost all of the songs from the original production are gone and replaced with new ones, which were instantly pleasing on our ears. The standout, though, is one of those original songs, Something Better Better Happen. Instantly memorable!!! ""Something better better happen. And it better happen soon!!!"
Loved the songs! Loved the book, which did not feel like a rehash of the movie. It felt current. With so many funny jokes that were very topical!
And the cast was simply sensational! Stephanie J. Block, as always, was a superstar diva! Will Swenson was so emotional! Rory O'Malley got to show some depth he wasn't given in Book Of Mormon. The lead girl was SO LOVELY! Wesley Taylor is swoon-worthy!
Every single performance was ace - even the little brother who barely spoke for 3/4 of the show! He was gripping!
Little Miss Sunshine is a must MUST see! We would not be surprised if it transfers to Broadway - and we hope it does!!!