Thursday, Dec. 09, 2010

Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown

Sometimes sheer craft on Broadway is undervalued. This musical, based on Pedro Almodovar's 1988 movie, mostly got slammed by the critics, but it does more things well than many more-acclaimed but less-accomplished shows. Jeffrey Lane's book is a deft and faithful adaptation of the movie. The stars — Patti LuPone, Sherie Renee Scott, Laura Benanti and Brian Stokes Mitchell — are a murderer's row of Broadway musical talent, yet they rise to their big numbers without throwing the show out of whack. Best of all, David Yazbek's melodic, Latin-influenced score is more than just good — it's on the verge of being memorable.