Closed 2h 30m
Bandstand
Midtown W
83

Bandstand NYC Reviews and Tickets

83%
(1053 Reviews)
Positive
91%
Mixed
8%
Negative
1%
Members say
Great singing, Entertaining, Great staging, Delightful, Great acting

About the Show

Set in the swing-fueled nightclubs of post-WWII America, this against-all-odds story of a singer/songwriter and his band of mismatched fellow vets comes to Broadway. Starring two-time Tony nominee Laura Osnes.

Read more Show less

Member Reviews (1053)

Sort by:
  • Default
  • Standing in our community
  • Highest first
  • Lowest first
  • Newest first
  • Oldest first
  • Only positive
  • Only negative
  • Only mixed
65
Cliched, Unfocused, Unconvincing, Overrated, Great singing

See it if you love Osnes & Cott; they give great performances in a meh show. Plot is silly, characterizations inconsistent, dialogue is leaden...

Don't see it if and the staging is cramped by the set. The cast is almost entirely white (why?) Disappointing lyrics, unmemorable music. Read more

70
Ambitious, Cliched, Unmemorable, Great dancing

See it if you want to experience the charm of Osnes & Cott & to see some great 40s-inspired dancing in an otherwise forgettable, cliche-ridden musical

Don't see it if you want to hear a memorable score or see a coherent, original story. [The Greatest Generation deserves a much greater musical.]

Critic Reviews (64)

April 26th, 2017

“An undercooked slice of apple pie, served with a dollop of anguish…It’s respectful of veterans, but not of itself, ultimately quitting on its own ambitions...Mr. Cott has a crushing charisma…Ms. Osnes, a brunette with a silvery voice, puts real feeling behind Julia’s loss…But even fine actors can’t make this story more persuasive. If ‘Bandstand’ really worked, the finale would find you laughing and crying. Instead, you might just make like the dancers and shrug.”
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“The resonant original musical ‘Bandstand' dances a delicate line between nostalgia and disillusion…The terrific group dance numbers burst with snazzy individuality. But 'Bandstand's' heart is in its shadows...As the stakes rise, the score moves from pleasurable pastiche to a climax whose impassioned call for attention to the plight of veterans recalls the socially engaged lyrics of E.Y. Harburg. The show defies you not to be moved by its valiant band of brothers.”
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“I’m not saying it’s perfectly carried out, or even especially profound, but it remains almost compulsively faithful to its vision…The darkness of the background does not mean that the show forswears entertainment…Although it features some Golden Age attributes it is hardly at Golden Age level. But an original musical with loads of fun music, expressive dance, and a will to grapple with issues that remain painfully topical is not to be dismissed glibly.”
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“While many of the numbers have the propulsive feel of big-band swing, none of them are particularly memorable, and the generic ballads frequently stop the show dead in its tracks…Cott and Osnes are highly attractive and appealing performers, and they sing the hell out of their material…But for all the strenuous effort and good intentions evident in ‘Bandstand,’ it mainly demonstrates that if you’re going to drop the name Dachau in a musical, it needs to be far better than this one.”
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“Cott and Osnes are worthy Broadway leads, with big voices and the energy and commitment to steer the show, but while they sounded great together, they lacked the spark that might’ve had me cheering for them to connect romantically…Blankenbuehler pulls double-duty as both choreographer and director here and manages with aplomb…'Bandstand' offers plenty to entertain in the moment, but despite its weighty theme, little lingers.”
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“An earnest and often-entertaining musical that never quite achieves its noble ambitions. Despite the fluid staging and evocative choreography by Andy Blankenbuehler, an uneven book, undistinguished dialogue and only-serviceable tunes keep the show from meeting its deeper, darker and good-intentioned aspirations…Oberacker pens the mood-setting, pleasant and easily forgettable pastiche songs and lyrics...The cast is made up of solid performers, most of who play their own instruments.”
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“It is to Blankenbuehler’s credit that the dazzling through-line of movement makes 'Bandstand' as much about dance as it is about music…The movement in 'Bandstand' is seamless and eye-popping, managing an astonishing feat…Oberacker and Taylor are clearly well versed in the musical idioms of the period and whose more-than-serviceable songs range from torchy ballads to roof-raising anthems...I have to wonder how this show was cast without a single non-Caucasian among the principals."
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“Blankenbuehler's production just never stops for a moment, sometimes at the expense of the narrative flow...The dancing is, however, spectacular…‘Bandstand’ has a serviceable score, although there is so much music that it often tends to blur…The book has moments of freshness and all kinds of potential, but it never strives enough for poetic heights or depth of characters…All in all, this is a show with some frustrations as well as many pleasures for the ear and eye.”
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“A well-meaning mishmash of a musical…The authors’ idea is a good one…But the show backburners this thread for a conventional story…It’s a bit all over the place…Songs by Oberacker and Taylor are workmanlike and pleasant, but tend to be monochromatic…Musically it’s a blur. The physical production can be one as well…Blankenbuehler's large cast steps up. Cott is appealing and gives his all. Osnes sings like a dream — even when the material isn’t one.”
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“An urgent testimonial to the healing and restorative power that the arts can have...Oberacker and Taylor created a swinging original score that not only captures the period style but also digs deep into the characters. The music is so tightly integrated into the script that ‘Bandstand’ becomes unusually powerful musical theater...Blankenbuehler does a stunning job as both director and choreographer.”
Read more

April 27th, 2017

"Taylor and Oberacker did a fine job turning the story into a deeply engaging and moving work. With high intensity and just the right touch of humor, they deal sensitively with the emotional issues plaguing each of the characters, while director/choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler put it into exhilarating motion…The music is appealingly catchy...With nary a false note in this production, 'Bandstand' creates sweet harmony from the dissonance of war."
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“‘Bandstand’ explores the undeniable power that art has to change the world…It also benefits from first-rate direction and choreography by Andy Blankenbuehler…In terms of style, 'Bandstand' is refreshingly old-fashioned…Osnes performs her two big numbers with a blistering intensity that is thrilling to behold. While not all of the songs fit comfortably in Cott's range, his work is as alive as it gets. It's an exhilarating, star-making turn."
Read more

April 27th, 2017

"Exhilarating, adventurous and immensely moving...As toe-tapping entertaining as it is poignant...The writing and acting is perfectly on pitch...Director/choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler's slam-bang production, continually on the move, ingeniously uses his ensemble to not only express the new freedoms post-war Americans felt with the latest dance crazes, but also to symbolize the internal struggle of its heroic main characters."
Read more

April 27th, 2017

"All of these songs unfold in an onstage world jittery with energy, maddened by an irresistible swing beat, thanks to the tightly coiled staging of director/choreographer Blankenbuehler...Cott drives the action as Donny, offering galvanic vocals...Osnes finds a surprising (and welcome) amount of steel in Julia...Even in its more formulaic moments, the show continues to surprise. And its central point remains steadfast: These men risked everything for their country—attention must be paid."
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“The conflict between what is and what should be is the powerful driving force behind this compelling evening…Oberacker and Taylor have created a heartfelt show that works well on its own terms...The music is of the bold and infectious variety…Too often, however, the songs aren't memorable…Blankenbuehler fares better, his staging brisk and fluid…Cott makes an arresting leading man…Osnes looks and sounds smashing, though she could dig a bit deeper to find more of Julia's defining darkness.”
Read more

April 27th, 2017

"Buoyed by a pair of charismatic, well-sung performances by the equally gorgeous Corey Cott and Laura Osnes, a tuneful score by Broadway newcomers Rob Taylor and Richard Obercraker, and some dynamite 1940s-inspired choreography by Tony winner Andy Blankenbuehler (who also directs), the show manages to prompt far more cheers than jeers – despite some unfortunate missteps in the book and execution."
Read more

April 26th, 2017

"Some of its material may be straight from the stock shelves, but 'Bandstand' has more than a few fresh notes up its sleeve—mostly blue ones...Blankenbuehler infuses the proceedings with a surging dynamism that virtually never lets up...Cott rips into the role of Donny with a vitality that scrubs away any of the role’s surface familiarity...Osnes, too, deserves some major love for revitalizing what might be a plain-Jane ingénue role...It’s a populist crowd-pleaser."
Read more

May 11th, 2017

“The songs are good, not great. Some serve to delve into character (Donny's ‘Donny Novitski,’ Julia's ‘Who I Was’) and some move the plot along (Julia and Donny's ‘First Steps, First,’ the Band members' ‘I Know a Guy’ and ‘A Band in New York City’) and, of course, there are love songs (Julia and Donny's ‘This is Life’ and ‘Welcome Home’). The songwriters have a feel for the period but their numbers are pale compared to the colorful popular tunes of that era.”
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“A strong message along with a remarkably talented cast…If you love the era of swing music, dance and saddle shoes, you’re a good match for ‘Bandstand’...The deeper and darker side of this story never lets up, but it is eased by the crackerjack perpetual whirling, twirling and tapping group of ace dancers to high-energy new swing sounds…Cott has emerged as a new leading man with his strong and powerful, yet edgy, charisma and fantastic vocals, aided by his lively dancing abilities."
Read more

April 26th, 2017

"Equally appealing to the ear and the eye. Since ‘Bandstand’ is emotionally complex and largely unsentimental, it's likely to connect with the intellect and the heart of spectators of many, perhaps all, ages. But what audiences will remember most is Blankenbuehler's stunning dances performed by a talented corps of idiosyncratic Broadway professionals…'Bandstand’ is superbly cast...A touching, funny, dry martini of a musical.”
Read more

May 2nd, 2017

“What saves this from death by saccharine is the raw nerves of these veterans…It is their story that trails after you when you leave...It is too bad that the authors were not able to take a pair of clippers to the book, and the stunning lack of a resolution doesn’t help…Cott and Osnes positively crackle and the ensemble work is spectacular in every way. But the basics of ‘beginning, middle and end’ got left behind at the train depot. And all the big band music doesn’t quite make up for that.”
Read more

May 1st, 2017

"Has all the ingredients necessary to make a Broadway hit: catchy songs that stay in your head...extraordinary choreography and a captivating story of war, love, and perseverance...Although undoubtedly an excellent piece of theater, there seems to be something somewhat dated about it...Although it’s possible that you’ll foresee a plot twist, embrace it, as 'Bandstand' is just as likely to jolt you alert, reduce you to tears, and ultimately, bring you to your feet."
Read more

April 30th, 2017

"There is great music; spectacular singing; a healthy, lively pulse; and athletic, creative dancing. The only problem in this show is that the creators barely give the piece a moment to catch its breath, constantly driving forward without a pause...It is in the calmer moments, sometimes too few and far between, that we can really feel attached to these tortured souls...The director needs to have more faith in our attention span."
Read more

April 28th, 2017

“Successfully toes the line between nostalgia and refreshing realism…The show’s cast manages to capture these characters as both charismatic underdogs and the complex survivors whose joy always has a darker tinge…Audiences looking forward to buoyant swing dance numbers won’t be let down here…The choreography works as an equal collaborator that elevates the book and score…The choreography physically expresses the Big Band beats of Oberacker’s score.”
Read more

April 29th, 2017

"The cast is pitch-perfect...The catchy, beat-happy score pays homage to the big band era...Director and choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler seamlessly nods to 1940s popular dances in coming up with some lively, inventive moves, performed by some terrific dancers...All of this terrific entertainment and artistry is arranged around a plot that also recalls the 1940s, but ultimately not in a good way...The more the singing contest takes over the plot...the more the plot stumbles."
Read more

April 27th, 2017

“A sincere, upbeat, but overly sudsy and clichéd musical…They deserve a chutzpah Tony for creating a show in which the central characters are musicians who play, not the actual big band swing of 1945, when the show is set, but pastiches…While 'Bandstand' never overcomes the impediment of its ersatz tunes, exciting director-choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler keeps our eyes and ears glued to his inventive staging, jitterbugging, and boogie-woogieing.”
Read more

April 30th, 2017

“A show that never allows us to digest the horrors of what vets go through…The cast is winning...Bender, Packard, Hopkins and Carroll are all terrific musicians and actors. Part of the problem with 'Bandstand' is that their stories are not fleshed out and we really do want to know them…Blankenbuehler’s direction is too dark and he chopped his choreography to shreds…I left the theatre wondering how a show that I was rooting for went so wrong."
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“It’s not going too far to suggest that the enthralling musical beats with the kind of heart that throbs throughout ‘South Pacific’…Arguably the best new musical of the season…Oberacker and Taylor have written a work that brims with honesty…Osnes gives the performance of her career so far. The voice is pure as mountain water…The purity of her acting is what lifts her into a new performing stratum. Less well known, Cott finds every dimension of heartsick, furious, talented Donny.”
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“It has not been a spectacular season for dance on Broadway...There’s almost no competition for Blankenbuehler’s arresting choreography in the new musical ‘Bandstand’…All he needs now is a musical worthy of his talents. ‘Bandstand’ is not that musical…The book initially intrigues, because it’s so damned dark for a Broadway musical…Alcoholism, divorce, drugs, unemployment, and chronic war wounds are not a plot…The second act is one long uneventful slog to the big city.”
Read more

W
May 2nd, 2017

“Osnes and Cott are fine singers and good actors…One wishes them better luck next time. Muddy arrangements of music that lacks not only 1940s flavor but actual melody conflict with unoriginal lyrics which neither sync nor sing…The book is the best thing about this piece. It has grit, wit and sincerity. While Blankenbuehler works well with his actors, overall action is often a mess…In different hands, this might’ve been a genial, vivacious show with a future in national touring.”
Read more

May 1st, 2017

"Employing identically dressed chorus members, Blankenbuehler creates a shattered hall-of-mirrors vision of protagonist Donny’s wartime memories...The plot follows a cliched track...Fortunately, Taylor and Oberacker delve deep into the traumas suffered by Donny and his crew and the score cleverly uses period music to create mood and explore the theme of the vets’ alienation...'Bandstand' does sing a familiar tune, but it has drawn up some new and arresting arrangements."
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“The results, which intentionally jumble the dance focus in challenging ways, are visually and emotionally compelling. But for all that originality and a startling cast of virtuosos who play their own instruments like members of a genuine jazz-swing band, the show never overcomes the feeling that inside the heartfelt, meandering 2 1⁄2-hour evening, a 90-minute powerhouse is struggling to come out…The musical is both too much and not quite enough for a satisfying whole."
Read more

May 5th, 2017

"The creative team has put a lot of hard work into this musical and it shows...Unfortunately, they couldn’t break with the show’s big final number and denouement, or shake a certain seen-it-before nature endemic to the familiar material...It’s a promising first effort and I dearly hope the creative team of Richard Oberacker and Rob Taylor can bounce back and dive right into another show...Now they need to learn from this and go out and do it again."
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“It is about some material that doesn't normally get the musical treatment, and that’s the show’s biggest selling point…Osnes brings considerable stage presence to her role…The trajectory of Taylor’s book is largely standard, and occasionally witty by virtue of self-awareness at how corny the jokes are…‘Bandstand’ deserves props for exploring serious subject matter without the distraction of a political message. Cott and Osnes do their best to sell it.”
Read more

May 8th, 2017

“Oberacker and Taylor’s score, with punches of contemporary rhythms, is fierce and athletic, reminiscent of ’40s swing…Cott and Osnes, both attractive performers, are also both expressive singers and define their characters, and their slowly growing romance, with nuance...This is an intense story, yet uplifted by high-flying energetic song and dance, humor, strong performers, and the life-affirming promise of music.”
Read more

M
May 4th, 2017

"It’s an admirable but disconcertingly disjointed effort...The score is a mixed bag. It captures the driving tempos of the era’s big band music, well realized in a plenitude of strong orchestrations. What’s missing are the beguiling melodies and the deceptive simplicity of lyrics that transformed so many of the songs from that era into standards...Despite the uneven material, the cast scores its points...For Blankenbuehler, the show is a further validation of his skills."
Read more

May 4th, 2017

"The most refreshing and imaginative of the bunch of recent arrivals...It’s not all pastiche, not by a long shot. There is youthful invention everywhere...As Donny Novitsky, his current role, Cott delivers a true star turn–as singer, actor, dancer, and pianist he dominates just as his character does...If 'Bandstand,' as the last musical entry of the season, is a hint, we have reason to hope we’re in for a good time in the year ahead."
Read more

May 1st, 2017

"It’s not cheesy. Blankenbuehler provides swirling movement and zippy choreography. The leads work hard, and deliver knockout numbers...But the net result feels like a noble flop. There’s just too much music, and not all of it is top drawer. The story sometimes verges on a hackneyed Dick Powell movie. And for all the slickness and swing-era recreations, the mood borders on dullish...This one falls into the category of admirable misstep. "
Read more

April 30th, 2017

"The joy of experiencing 'Bandstand' is seeing an original musical...The subject matter is familiar but still relevant today...The book seems contrived and you can see how things are going to fall in place. However, the score is transporting and the sound of the big band/swing era is exhilarating...With 'Bandstand' you may feel you’ve seen this plot before, but who cares? Among the swing music, vitality, sound, Ms. Osnes and Mr. Cott, it is an evening of sheer delight."
Read more

May 9th, 2017

“The cast is generally excellent…The most powerful performance comes from Laura Osnes, who somehow navigates the book’s weak links…What really saves ‘Bandstand’ from being just a respectable, ho-hum musical is Blankenbuehler’s stage movement and choreography…Blankenbuehler integrates dance and movement with story and music with undeniable distinction. And 'Bandstand’ has the talent that delivers on his creativity.”
Read more

May 8th, 2017

“I think it’s certainly the best musical of the season, and Richard Oberacker and Robert Taylor’s score definitely one of my favorites…What could have so easily been nostalgic hooey is deeply humane, always engaging and even moving. With ‘Bandstand,’ Blankenbuehler joins the ranks of the truly great director-choreographers…Both Cott and Laura Osnes tend to get cast as stereotypical ingenues, but here they give riveting performances as full, conflicted human beings.”
Read more

April 26th, 2017

"It is a stand-up-and-cheer great new musical that should not be missed...A war-story cliche or two might find space in the script...But much of the show's excellence comes from its treatment of the veterans as real people...Wonderful story and performances notwithstanding, much of its dazzle finds root in Andy Blankenbuehler's direction and choreography...It is at bottom an excellent new musical full of wonderful performances and bold, finely crafted music."
Read more

May 5th, 2017

"The cast is enormously talented—some sing, dance, act, and play instruments expertly. The music is catchy and tuneful, if forgettable...The band, onstage and in the pit is excellent...The dancing is fabulous...The fact that the script is so predictable is the show's principal problem. I kept trying to think of ways to make the book more interesting...For all its virtues, 'Bandstand' is saddled with a book that resembles a 1940s B musical...The war flashbacks are pretty cheesy."
Read more

May 1st, 2017

"Sentimental but affecting...Osnes is the emotional center of a show that also generously allows each of the bandsmen to work out his demons by playing the music he loves. And Blankenbuehler has ingeniously visualized those ghosts and the weight on each vet’s shoulders with astonishingly effective choreographed movements...Richard Oberacher’s toe-tappingly swing-inflected music at times digs into a well of melody and emotion."
Read more

May 1st, 2017

"While it flirts with cliche almost to the point of marriage, 'Bandstand' manages to stay on message and deliver a genuinely heartfelt and affecting story about the greatest generation's return home from World War II...Together this cast keep the energy high and the story blasting forward. Where 'Bandstand' succeeds to its fullest is in the music. Whether it's played by the orchestra or the cast, it's nothing short of perfect...'Bandstand' is so good that you don't think about its blindspots."
Read more

T
May 4th, 2017

“‘Bandstand’ raises the stakes on a storied cliché…Oberacker and Taylor bring an innocence and vitality to a story every boy and girl imagines, and which the show’s creators run with to the heights…What a pleasure it is to hear Oberacker’s compositions…Laura Osnes does a remarkable acting job…‘Bandstand’ is a laudable work steeped in classical American music and dance styles, with a nostalgic sense of storytelling that still requires attention.”
Read more

May 2nd, 2017

"'Bandstand' begins with a promising premise...The musicians are terrific, even those making their acting debuts...Blankenbuehler includes some exciting swing dancing, and there is a creative number featuring dancers who follow the soldiers as if they are shadows of their younger selves in combat...The show goes on too long, with what feels like extraneous scenes and music. What started out so promising in 'Bandstand' gets clichéd in the end."
Read more

May 14th, 2017

"The whole of 'Bandstand' is such a striver, every craftsman-artist, every performer artist at peak, especially choreographer-director Andy Blankenbuehler...A swirl of emotion and entertainment that never falters...Wonderful dancers who sing. Wonderful singers who dance. Wonderful actors who sing and dance, are funny, and heartbreaking. And play instruments. Head-shakingly amazing...In a season of many gifts 'Bandstand' stands very high."
Read more

Z
April 27th, 2017

"There are so many elements to be savored...Foremost is the wonderfully inventive choreography...Certainly the concern of American veterans coming back from battle is a timely issue, yet the production never fully engages emotionally...There was a sense of superficiality that things were being hurried along and glossed over. Unhappily, most of the time, there was an overwhelming lack of drama. There were so many elements that I admired, but the show was not a completely satisfying experience."
Read more

T
May 10th, 2017

"Despite the production’s earnestness and its dark/light subject matter, there’s not all that much to celebrate...Composer Oberacker did not have enough musical moxie to equal the wonderful pop songs of the post-World War II period...Nor does the story of 'Bandstand' sufficiently pluck the heart-strings…Osnes is a bearer of both dance and singing talent...'Bandstand' is a disappointment; it adds little to either the Great American Songbook or our the remembrance of times past."
Read more

April 27th, 2017

"An impressive work as it takes what might sound like a cliché and turns it into a meaningful work that is fun without being frothy, and serious without being somber...The entire cast is terrific as each band member is able to etch a character who rises above stereotype...Director-choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler keeps the dances vibrant and exciting. More importantly, he tells an emotionally complex story with clarity. 'Bandstand' is a delight that is compassionate, entertaining and truthful."
Read more

April 26th, 2017

“Corey Cott (as Donny) is Broadway's newest superstar. Laura Osnes (Julia) is perfect in her leading role. We see brilliant performances from the quadrupally talented Joe Carroll on drums, Brandon James Ellis on bass, & James Nathan Hopkins on sax...The score is fun and catchy, led by two emotional show-stoppers ‘Love Will Come and Find Me Again’ and especially ‘Welcome Home.’ The latter has a haunting chorus while revealing the struggles our heroes face.”
Read more

April 27th, 2017

"Resolutely old-fashioned, cynical despite its syrupy story line, and seemingly calibrated to hit its audience precisely in its comfort zone...'Bandstand' is more than competently pulled off...The show, however, is a bit of a shock. It is not the shock of newness, but the shock of seeing something performed that so resolutely remains walled off from even the present state of politics and culture...The kind of show you take your parents too, or more likely your grandparents."
Read more

April 24th, 2017

"The first act is straight off the rack, a concatenation of bone-tired clichés strung together on an unexpectedly interesting premise. The second act isn’t any more original, but it’s more agreeable, and you’ll likely feel that you’ve been sufficiently entertained by the time the curtain falls...Corey Cott and Laura Osnes, who play the bandleader and his vocalist, are fresh-faced and appealing...The kind of unchallenging show to which you might feel inclined to take your visiting grandparents."
Read more

October 23rd, 2015
For a previous production

"The musical’s angry climax is quite effective. What precedes it is scarcely so thrilling. The script and score are competently crafted but greater musical variety and certainly a richer infusion of humor are needed...Andy Blankenbuehler, who directs and choreographs, gives the production plenty of kinetic energy, but there tends to be a sameness to his post-jitterbug dances...The 21-member company never fails to animate this obviously sincerely meant yet curiously flat musical."
Read more

October 19th, 2015
For a previous production

"A terrific new musical with an absorbing plot, likable characters, high emotional stakes, a tuneful, big band-style score, and seamless swing dance choreography from director-choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler...The plotting is occasionally clunky, and it is difficult to adequately explore all of the supporting characters while keep the two leads and their slow romance front and center. But on the whole, 'The Bandstand' is lively, enjoyable and captivating."
Read more

October 21st, 2015
For a previous production

"Exciting choreography is never in short supply from Andy Blankenbuehler...The tone here is fun and lively like any tourist-attracting musical should be. But Blankenbuehler adds both metaphorical and literal shadows to its shiny facade...The only thing that disappoints about 'The Bandstand' is its tendency to slip into the trite musical it distinctly is not...But at its highest moments, 'The Bandstand' is not just a story told with music — it's a story born from music."
Read more

October 22nd, 2015
For a previous production

‘Brilliantly directed and choreographed…The cast of 'The Bandstand' delivers outstanding performances...The score is inventive and flawlessly performed with thrilling dance numbers…The numbers are wholly relevant to the story line and each song makes you yearn for the next...'The Bandstand' is an epic, patriotic musical that tells of struggle, loss and a special kind of heroism...A show that is sure to entertain and raise your spirits, a musical theatre fan's dream come true."
Read more

October 18th, 2015
For a previous production

"Blankenbuehler has directed and choreographed 'The Bandstand' with the necessary verve while demonstrating a vibrant flair for the times. His direction is largely defined by being able to keep up with the pace of the dancing, all of which gives the illusion of being not only non-stop and also un-stoppable...A major item missing from the show is humor...All told, the era of 'The Bandstand' appears perfectly grounded with its look and by its sounds."
Read more

October 19th, 2015
For a previous production

"They’ve got a lot going for them: two very appealing leads, a brisk and propulsive visual style powered by director and choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler and a family friendly story with some bite…The show would undoubtedly improve if those gritty impulses were encouraged even more...Again and again, one wanted more. Not huge new scenes or lengthy back stories, but a moment or lyric here, a scene there that would deepen the story they’re already telling."
Read more

October 19th, 2015
For a previous production

"A bold, uncompromising musical that jumps and swings with heart, energy, and a refreshing resistance to schmaltz. It refuses to shy away from its own weighty subject matter, while also delivering a rousing score of big-band swing complemented by frenetic dance numbers...The songs sound authentic to the era, but feel uniquely fresh, and they infuse 'The Bandstand' with a palpable energy...Full of feverish music and dance, the energy here never flags."
Read more

T
November 5th, 2015
For a previous production

"A precarious, semi-successful balancing act between entertainment and psychological study...The predictable trajectory of the story is the weakest part of the show. Oberacker’s music is a sturdy swing-music pastiche that purrs along nicely...Blankenbueler’s stylish direction and lively choreography keep the show on the right track even when it bogs down in trite familiarity...Whenever Osnes and company let loose with another tune, most of the flaws of 'Bandstand' are forgiven."
Read more

October 20th, 2015
For a previous production

"A work which offers many terrific parts, which is stuffed with insight and true heart, which makes one laugh and cry with delight, and which carries a strong political message...An unqualified triumph in every way, beautifully written, superbly directed, immaculately performed, and consummately engaging and absorbing...Across the board, the performances here are first rate in every respect...This is a masterpiece of musical theatre. It operates on many levels at once, and succeeds on all."
Read more

October 23rd, 2015
For a previous production

"A story infused with such heart and passion, it practically jumps off the page...It’s thrilling...Every step, whether it be choreographed or staged, has a purpose, a through-line to the story being told...The book is witty, clever, and expertly handled and executed...Cott is magnificent in the lead role...He has palpable chemistry with the effervescent Osnes, and their scenes are intimate and personal...Every bit his equal is Osnes...The supporting cast is uniformly strong."
Read more

Watch This Next (3)

83
Great
1K+ Reviews
Open run
NYC: East Village

This family-friendly show celebrates the power of percussion and the sheer joy of banging on things.

Buy
82
Great
500+ Reviews
Open run
NYC: Midtown W

An actor drinks heavily (in the vein of Comedy Central's 'Drunk History') and then tries to corral others into…

Buy
81
Great
30 Reviews
Opens Aug 09
NYC: Upper W Side

Shakespeare in the Park is back this summer with Jocelyn Bioh's joyous adaptation of "Merry Wives."

Buy