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 Post subject: THE PROFESSOR'S CRITIQUE: The Wiz Live
PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2015 4:07 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2007 4:13 pm
Posts: 596
Location: Detroit and Atlanta

The direction of the show seemed to be in a narrow space. I love would have loved to see them expand the actor's staging areas. True, it was for television and they used the old placement techniques although they used multi cameras.

I hope Shanice Williams' career begins to blossom. She is now this decade's Dorothy. Will she be immortalized like Stephanie Mills?

Who knows, but I can say she did a great job and she reintroduced this show to millions who hadn't seen this before.

Elijah Kelley had a lot of guts attempting a role eternalized by Michael Jackson. You know what? His efforts were great. His acting is better than his singing but he sings well indeed! His future is great! I would have loved to hear him sing that in a lower key.

FIRE THE MD!!! Since this was live for TV, they could have changed these keys to fit the musicians. Heck, classical singers even do it. Obviously, someone didn't have sense enough to suggest that or make that happen. Queen Latifah's songs were WAY too low for her. Brand New Day was WAY too high for everyone and Crazy Eye's song was too high for her also.
I was not a fan of those arrangements. Modernizing it doesn't mean take out the counter melodies. Drum Machine???? BOOOOOO!!!!!!!!! If this is live, why is the music prerecorded?!?!?!? shameful

NE-YO is the MVP in my opinion. His seasoned performance chops showed when the camera was on him. he could have easily stoled the show.

Biggest Surprise: Mary J Blige. She turned out to be a good Evilene.

The "Started Slow but did better eventually Award" goes to Queen Latifah. The tessitura for her to sing in was terrible. Oops I'm sorry, ABYSMAL. FIRE THE VOCAL COACH!!! With that being said, once Latifah's character changed, her acting came out. Heck, I though it was Khadijah James for a minute. She seemed more comfortable in that than she she was as the Wizard.

Much props to my CT brother David Alan Grier for once again putting CT and Detroit in the limelight! he's a heck of an actor.

The makeup artists were on POINT!!!!!

Suggestion: Although I would say this was a successful production, I believe it would have been even better had been in front of a live audience. The energy from being in front of people would have been irreplaceable.

Cast: B+
Backdrops: A+
Makeup: A+
Costumes: B (Note: the Poppies were immaculate!!!)
Direction: B- (WAY too tight of spacing)
Musical Arrangements: D
Choreography: A
Energy: B- (Not the cast's fault)
Overall: B

As I conclude, let it be known that I enjoyed watching black greatness on television! I hope this revival allows more African American Musicals to be a part of the canon!

tired of snap music? need something to drive to?
SIRWICK is the answer!

Director of Bands
Morehouse College
"The House of Funk: Funkiest Show on Earth!"

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