Get ready to “Stick It to the Man”!
Based on the hilarious 2003 film, which starred Jack Black as Dewey Finn, the musical adaptation brought together an unlikely team of rockers that includes composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, lyricist Glenn Slater and “Downton Abbey” creator Julian Fellowes, who provides the book. Each of these three men have seemingly embraced their child within and grabbed an air guitar to create one of the most fun-loving and family-friendly musicals on the Great White Way.
The Broadway premiere officially opened at the Winter Garden Theatre on December 6, 2015, following previews from November 9, and went on to earn four Tony Award nominations, including “Best Musical” in 2016.
One of the main draws of this production is the fantastically talented ensemble of children who play their instruments live on stage eight times a week. The infamous advice to any actor to avoid working with animals and children couldn’t be further off the mark, if School of Rock is anything to go by. I dare say that a few adults working on the Broadway scene could be schooled by these kids and learn a thing or two along the way.
Aside from the show’s integral anthem of “Stick It to the Man”, other musical highlights from Webber’s score include “You’re in the Band” – a high-energy, expositional piece where we are introduced to each child and their musical talents – and “Where Did the Rock Go?” which offers uptight headmistress Rosalie Mullins’ her time to shine in the spotlight.
Kids, grab your parents… Parents, grab the grandparents… This is a live experience that is sure to get anyone from any generation on their feet and rocking out by the end of the show. See what happens when the strictly regimented routine of Horace Green School is invaded by the anti-establishmentarian spirit of Rock!
(Photos by Matthew Murphy)