Friday, April 30, 2010

Raising "The Kid"

If you live in or around New York City, I highly recommend getting down to Theatre Row and seeing The Kid. Based on the autobiographical book by sex columnist Dan Savage, writers Michael Zam (book), Andy Monroe (music), and Jack Lechner (lyrics) manage to write an incredibly touching story about a gay couple struggling through the adoption process. This musical was touching, hilarious, and really a wonderful story about relationships and family, examined through a lens that is rarely explored. The process of adopting a child already sets up huge, interesting conflicts and plot twists, and this particular piece spearheads the journey with strong leading characters who you really grow to root for. Terry and Dan are a very real couple, whose dynamics as they progress from a one night stand to loving parents are a joy to watch. The fact that Dan is also a sex columnist really frames the story nicely, and the narration of the story through Dan in a column-like manner works well for the work and also provides back story without being overly expositional. One thing that really helps move things along is the music. The tunes are easily digestible, a good amount even memorable, and wholly accessible. The lyrics flow with relative ease and there are some really nice harmonies/overlapping songs that beautifully show the complicated elements and conflicting views that arise from this emotionally charged situation. With an all-star cast with Broadway favorites Christopher Sieber, Ann Harada, Susan Blackwell, and Jill Eikenberry, the musical is packed with energy and heart. Not only do I look forward to more great things from these writers, but I also hope for a long life for this show.

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