Grease Live: A Musical Theater Performance
A few weeks ago I encouraged you all to go see a live performance. On January 31st, more than 17 million people viewed in to watch Grease Live on Fox and I was pleased to be one of them. That’s right, Fox put the iconic movie Grease the musical into a live Broadway style show and shared the experience with millions around the globe to include U.S., Canada, Australia, and the U.K. Now when I first heard this I had mixed feelings. I was excited and looking forward to how they would deliver it, but at the same time I was nervous that I would get let down. I mean it’s Grease for crying out loud and my expectations were high. Many cinematic movies turned to plays don’t tend to compare to the movies, but I was going into it with an open mind. Overall I was impressed to how it all turned out, even with the several different adaptions. To be honest. I thought it was a little cheesy, however, I thought the performances were fantastic as well as the sets, costumes, choreography, cinematic beauty, music, live crowd, and the overall electric energy from the whole production including the cast and audience.
The show stared Aaron Tveit as Danny Zuko, Julianne Hough as Sandy, and Vanessa Hudgens as Rizzo and was full of raw talent. Now before watching this I only knew of the two staring females for which I give them both praise for their performances. Though I thought Tveit did well, I didn’t think the role suited him. He was suppose to portray a bad boy with a hidden side of a nice guy, but Tveit’s performance was more of a nice guy than bad, which was a bit of a let down. His harmonies were spot on though. His singing was magnificent.
Julianne’s performance was spot on. She did an amazing job as portraying Sandy. My opinion may be biased due to the fact that I am a big fan of the Safe Haven star. She is the definition of a triple threat in singing, dancing, and acting. She definitely made her mark on stage.
I cannot give Vanessa Hudgens praise enough. Her performance was outstanding especially given the fact that her dad passed away hours before the show was to start. She had the right spunk and attitude to pull of Rizzo and boy did she deliver. In my opinion it was her best acting that she has done. Bravo Vanessa!
Other special guests in Grease Live included Keke Palmer as Marty, Carly Rae Jepsen as Frenchie, Mario Lopez, Jessie J, Joe Jonas, and Boys II Men to name a few.
The Sets and Cinematic Beauty:
This live performance was shot in Southern California where the special guest El Nino paid an unexpected visit. Regardless of the constant threat of rain, the show must go on and it did. It was filmed at Warner Brothers in and outside of 21 different locations scattered across the back lot. The cast had to ride golf carts in between stages, sets, and during costume changes. One of the many enjoyments was that the behind the scene moments were included in the production.
All the sets felt so real, like I was watching the movie. The sets were four walled and sometimes would include audience members as part of certain sets. Not only was there a live audience, but also during the final scene of the cast singing “We Go Together” outside at a live carnival, a drone filmed the finale performance. It was all very impressive and a first for television.
I hope many of you got to see this performance of Grease Live. Its not every day that you get a live performance handed to you on television. I still do encourage you to watch a performance live though. As much as a treat it was to watch Grease Live in my living room, it just is not the same as being there to enjoy the electric energy, to appreciate the costumes, make up, chemistry, choreography, etc. The list is endless. I applaud the directors Thomas Kail and Alex Rudzinski for putting together a great live performance for all of us to enjoy. It was a hard job and I think it deserves an A+.
Article by Jacqui