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Chicago: Phenomenal

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I’ve been anxiously waiting through Chicago‘s staggered release schedule to see the film. Although it opened in Kansas City (and even little Manhattan, KS) several weeks ago, it didn’t reach Lawrence until this weekend. Interestingly enough, after the wait, I wound up seeing it in Manhattan with a friend of mine.

Both our reactions’ upon leaving the theatre were the same: phenomenal. We’d both heard good things about the show, and it won three Golden Globes, of course, but we were still blown away. The singing, the dancing, the charisma of all involved were remarkable. Throw in Catherine Zeta-Jones (let’s hear it for hyphenation!) and Renee Zellweger, and even guys who aren’t big fans of musical theatre should enjoy this one.

There were times throughout the show when I was about to applaud after excellent numbers, before I remembered that I was watching a movie and not a live Broadway show. Perhaps the most remarkable scene was the press conference “puppet show” number…it was one of those productions that leave you saying “wow.” I can’t, however, comment on the movie’s faithfulness to the stage show, as I haven’t seen Chicago on stage. That, I plan to change soon.

I picked up the movie’s soundtrack on the way home today and have been listening to it all afternoon. Listening to the songs from the musical is just as rewarding musically as it was last night…perhaps more so, given the dated speaker system in the theatre. Unfortunately, there’s also a rap “version” of “Cell Block Tango” (featuring Queen Latifah, Lil’ Kim, and Macy Gray) that is an embarrassment to a musical’s soundtrack. There’s also a song by Anastacia that has no more business on this cd. Although I didn’t stick around for the end of the credits, I’m guessing that’s where these two songs made their appearance in the movie, if at all. (The folks reviewing the cd over at Amazon tend to agree with me.)

The highlight of Bobby Allison-Gallimore’s musical theatre career–thus far–was serving as the piano accompanist for Spring Hill High School’s production of Oklahoma!

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