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 Post subject: Re: Baltimore Reviews
PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 5:40 pm 
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Billy
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porschesrule wrote:
From those who have seen the show over the last few stops -- how is the production doing with regard to filling the seats?


I'd say Baltimore packed them in pretty well. The back few rows of Orchestra (which brings you past the alphabet and into double letters anyway) were very sparse. Also empty were some of the far left and far right seats, but with this theatre, you wouldn't want to be too far one way or the other anyway. I sat in the far right seat of the front row and was missing more than half the set. Changed my seat after Intermission that show. The far left front row seat was better and right near the steps to the stage, which helped too. But we had some people who literally couldn't see most of the stage from their far right seats, so the manager helped them relocate. I'd say that overall, the meat and potatoes of the theatre was packed at all performances. Maybe not the best they could have looked, but not noticeably sparse either.


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 Post subject: Re: Baltimore Reviews
PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 7:18 pm 
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Billy
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I saw the show the first two nights in Baltimore (Dec. 18 and 19), and both nights the house was close to full. I had seat D8 on house right in the orchestra, and I thought it was a great seat. Yes, it was a partial view seat, but I truly did not miss that much from that location. The entrances from stage left were obscured, but most entrances are stage right or up center anyway, and the ones that couldn't be seen from D8 were not a problem for me as a veteran of so many shows, since I knew what was going on anyway. I think that a similarly obstructed view from the house left (stage right) side would be much less satisfactory because of the fact that much more tends to happen on that side of the stage. Also, when Billy sings the Letter, for example, you can't see his face from house left, but you get an excellent view of Billy from house right.

As for the crowd, as I said, both nights I attended, the theatre was almost full, and the audiences were very responsive. I would rate those two audiences as excellent.

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 Post subject: Re: Baltimore Reviews
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 5:49 am 
Billy
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December 28-30:

I too did a Baltimore Billython this past weekend, seeing the same shows as muck912, Maria and Sean. They have done great jobs in their reviews, so I won't duplicate things. I have to say the production is in incredibly good shape. Each Billy impressed me in ways I was not expecting. Each one I saw was my favorite, until I saw the next one. ;)

Ben:
The Ben Cook fan club was well represented. Many friends from his schools and home town had driven to Baltimore for the day to see him. At the start of the show when his name was announced as playing Billy, huge cheers went up throughout the house. It's hard to believe six months has already gone by since we saw him debut in Louisville, and now he is the senior Billy on tour. As previously noted, Ben did a piano flip in B2B, although he was the only one we saw do it this weekend. His singing of Electricity is now in a lower key, but he still sounds awesome. And of course his dancing is something to be seen!

The lady sitting next to me at this performance was seeing the show in Baltimore for the fourth time. She had also seen it in NYC. I forgot that I should have told her about this forum.

Noah:
He has come a long way since the summer and is really at the top of his game. He does a great Angry Dance with lots of primal screams. Overall he was everything that I expect the ideal Billy to be, with the perfect look, accent, and voice.

Drew:
From the videos I had seen on Youtube I was expecting to be impressed with his dancing. I had no idea if he could sing or act, and was concerned that perhaps my expectations of him were too high and I would be disappointed. Well not to worry. Drew blew us all away with his performance!

He did one thing that I hadn't seen before, in the Express scene. When Michael says "trackies off", Billy usually ignores the line and puts the skirt on over his trackies. Drew put his hands on his waistband like was about to take them off, then shook his head and proceded to take his shoes off. This was the first time since they revamped the tour where I saw a Billy look like actually thought about taking off the trackies.

It wasn't just us fans who were impressed with Drew. The whole audience gave a standing ovation for him at the first curtain call, which is the only time they stood that soon all weekend.

Mitchell:
He has to be the smallest new Billy ever, at least in the North American shows. This makes it easier for him to get lost and knocked around in the sea of ballet girls during Shine. He ends his Born to Boggie with a set of really fast spins that, to me are nearly as impressive as the piano flip. His Angry Dance is quite powerful, all the more so because of his small size! Man can he tap! He can act quite bratty in the scenes at the Royal Ballet, with Posh Boy and in the interview. His Electricity starts and ends with an aerial (like Ben's). His singing both in The Letter and Electricity is emotional and determined.

For both Drew and Mitchell, you would not expect them to be so polished and impressive on their 5th shows. If they are like this now, I can't even imagine what they will be like in a few months!!

Jake and Sam:
They each play Michael in different ways. Jake is more subdued and timid like the Michael in the movie. Sam is more outgoing and assertive. Both get great reactions from the audiences. In one of the shows with Sam and Mitchell, the Express number got applause mid-song at the "it's showtime" line where they start tapping together.

I very much like the new cast members Molly Garner as Mum and Cara Massey as Clipboard Woman. Chris Howard has nicely settled into his long-running understudy role as Older Billy / Scottish Dancer. His Scottish Dancer is tougher and more believable than I recall earlier in the year.

For me 2012 both started and ended with Billythons. It was great catching up once again with several fellow fans and sharing this experience. :D
-Chris

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 Post subject: Re: Baltimore Reviews
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 2:36 pm 
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Billy
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CJ-Rochester wrote:
Drew...did one thing that I hadn't seen before, in the Express scene. When Michael says "trackies off", Billy usually ignores the line and puts the skirt on over his trackies. Drew put his hands on his waistband like was about to take them off, then shook his head and proceded to take his shoes off. This was the first time since they revamped the tour where I saw a Billy look like actually thought about taking off the trackies.


This was a point I forgot to mention. I actually noticed this with all 4 Billys this past weekend. Though Drew may have been most obvious about it, I noticed it with all 4 of them, the way they registered that Michael had told them to take the "trackies" (pants) off, but decided not to. For those who are new or need a reminder, this change was made to facilitate the extra microphone(s) set up in Billy's track pants which help pick up the tapping better in Express.

Sean


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 Post subject: Re: Baltimore Reviews
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 2:52 pm 
Billy

Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 11:54 pm
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angelenroute wrote:
CJ-Rochester wrote:
Drew...did one thing that I hadn't seen before, in the Express scene. When Michael says "trackies off", Billy usually ignores the line and puts the skirt on over his trackies. Drew put his hands on his waistband like was about to take them off, then shook his head and proceded to take his shoes off. This was the first time since they revamped the tour where I saw a Billy look like actually thought about taking off the trackies.


This was a point I forgot to mention. I actually noticed this with all 4 Billys this past weekend. Though Drew may have been most obvious about it, I noticed it with all 4 of them, the way they registered that Michael had told them to take the "trackies" (pants) off, but decided not to. For those who are new or need a reminder, this change was made to facilitate the extra microphone(s) set up in Billy's track pants which help pick up the tapping better in Express.

Sean


Sean:

Are the mics built into the stage floor at the Victoria Palace Theatre? Because there, trackies most definitely do come off!


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 Post subject: Re: Baltimore Reviews
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 3:12 pm 
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Billy
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kport wrote:
Sean:

Are the mics built into the stage floor at the Victoria Palace Theatre? Because there, trackies most definitely do come off!


I assume so, only saw the show there once my first time in 2007, but I know the Broadway stage was fully mic'd. It makes sense that the Mother Church would have that as well. :D


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 Post subject: Re: Baltimore Reviews
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 4:04 pm 
Billy
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kport wrote:
Are the mics built into the stage floor at the Victoria Palace Theatre? Because there, trackies most definitely do come off!

In the New York and other previous North American productions the mics were built into the raked stage floor. I assume they are the same at the VPT. With the revamped tour that floor is gone, hence the change to build the mics into the costumes (Billy's trackies and Michael's knee socks).

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 Post subject: Re: Baltimore Reviews
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 4:17 pm 
George
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As I understand it, every production except the revamped tour had 96 microphones in the stage floor.


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 Post subject: Re: Baltimore Reviews
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 6:19 pm 
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Billy
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Noah also does the bit of taking hold of his waistband and then deciding not to remove the pants. However, the last time I saw him, it really was so subtle that it was almost unnoticeable. Personally, I think that in order for that line to make sense at all in the context of the current tour, all the Billys need to do it and make it obvious that they are considering and rejecting the idea.

Re tap mics: Yes, until this latest iteration of the tour, the floor has been wired with mics. But for Angry Dance, all Billys have always had mics sewn into the hems of their red track pants. If the floor mics were to be turned on for that number, can you imagine what would happen when the shields slam down? 8-) Since Billy is the only one whose footwork needs to be heard, the sewn-in mics make more sense for that number.

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"I don't want people who want to dance; I want people who have to dance.”
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 Post subject: Re: Baltimore Reviews
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 6:22 pm 
Billy

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Do American audiences understand what 'trackies' are?


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