(Ben Brantley’s article appeared in the New York Times, 4/19.)

Squint, and the World Is Beautiful

Their plumage is wilting, their wigs are askew, and their bustiers keep slipping south to reveal unmistakably masculine chests. Yet the ladies of the chorus from “La Cage aux Folles” have never looked more appealing than they do in the warm, winning production that opened Sunday night at the Longacre Theater.

Terry Johnson’s inspired revival of Jerry Herman and Harvey Fierstein’s musical, starring a happily mismatched Kelsey Grammer and Douglas Hodge (in a bravura Broadway debut), delivers the unexpected lesson that in theater, shabby can be not just chic but redemptive. This deliberately disheveled show, incubated at the tiny hit-spawning Menier Chocolate Factory in London, is a far cry from the high-gloss original production of 1983 or the glamorous, soulless revival that opened less than six years ago.

http://theater.nytimes.com/2010/04/19/theater/reviews/19cage.html?hpw

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