Theatre Review: ‘An American in Paris’

An American in Paris Tour Review

Lovely and wonderful are two words that best describe An American in Paris, the Tony Award winning musical that just arrived at the San Diego Civic Theater.

Adapted by Craig Lucas from the 1951 MGM movie and filled with songs by George and Ira Gershwin (“I Got Rhythm”, ”S Wonderful”, “They Can’t Take That Away From Me” are among the most notable), director and choreographer Christopher Wheeldon breathes so much life, color and newness into the musical that it’s a joy to watch.

The opening alone is something to witness. As the story opens, the Nazi empire has been defeated and the cast enters to perform the first dance number. It’s almost completely silent on stage (and in the audience) except for the soft taps of their feet. Yet, it’s so full of energy and emotion and life. It’s a beautiful thing to be a part of.

The story centers around Jerry Mulligan (McGee Maddox), an American ex-GI hoping to start a new life as a painter in Paris. He befriends Adam (Stephen Brower), a composer and fellow ex-pat, and Henri (Nick Spangler), a Frenchman and aspiring singer, who all are hoping for a better life now that the war is over. Soon though, Jerry falls for Lise (Sara Etsy), a shopgirl and ballerina, only to discover that Henri has eyes for her too.

Maddox and Etsy are perfect dance partners but it’s Brower and Spangler who are the standouts of this excellent cast. Brower has that instantly relatable, everyman quality about him. While Spangler brings layer after layer to Henri. So much so, that you might actually want him to end up with Lise.

An American in Paris is playing at the San Diego Civic Theatre through Sunday. For more info: Broadway San Diego

Leave a Reply

http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Sterling-k-brown-this-is-us.jpg
Sterling K. Brown on Becoming an Actor: “You get bit, and you just keep chasing that”
"I was used to being 'that dude from that show, who got shot in that episode'" - Sterling K. Brown
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/richard-dreyfuss.jpg
Richard Dreyfuss on Winning an Oscar: “You’re riskier when you’re on the hunt”
"I had no doubt of my eventual success." - Richard Dreyfuss
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Shannon-Purser-Stranger-Things.jpg
‘Stranger Things’ Star Shannon Purser on Getting Cast as Barb
"I had never booked anything, gotten close calls, and then one day I got an email about this new show called Stranger Things, asking for a tape." - Shannon Purser
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/watch-sag-conversations-on-broad.jpg
Watch: SAG Conversations on Broadway with Andy Karl
Karl recalls his highs and lows on stages and reveals the charming side that has made him a huge star.
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/watch-sag-conversations-with-ale.jpg
Watch: SAG Conversations with Alexander Skarsgard of ‘Big Little Lies’
Skarsgard talks about his career and work on HBO's 'Big Little Lies'