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"Pretty much everything Midler does stops the show...Midler never pushes for effect. Her every bit of shtick has been precisely chosen and honed, and rather than forcing it down our throats, she makes us come to her to admire it. Much of the rest of Zaks’ production charges at us like a prancing elephant, festooned in shades of pink…A tone of sunny desperation isn’t out of keeping with what seems to be this production’s escapist mission, which is to deliver nostalgia with an exclamation point." Full Review
"Midler serves up a star performance of glowing luster, rambunctious clowning and, on just a few occasions, surprising emotional delicacy...Midler transforms this cotton-candy cloud of a musical into a bona fide theatrical event...The aesthetic approach here is more a matter of loving restoration than reinvention...It remains a featherweight piece of pure escapism...A star shines best when there are strong talents around her to reflect her light, and Midler has been so surrounded here." Full Review
“Midler is dishing out comic gold in a joyous revival that will remind you why you fell in love with Broadway in the first place…‘Dolly’ is as catchy and irresistible as ever. Jerry Herman's hit-parade score will stick with you for weeks…The cast brings pristine comic timing to Michael Stewart's hilarious book…Midler embraces the audience and the energy it brings with a giant bear hug...A rare experience that even the most jaded theatergoer will have trouble resisting.” Full Review
"Midler glows...as she lands schticky gags, sings with moxie, conveys sincerity and leads the colorful parade proudly strutting across the stage. That said, it must be stressed that under the care of director Jerry Zaks...the star of the evening is 'Hello, Dolly!.' Its reputation as a glitzy star vehicle may overshadow the fact that this is a superbly written work of bubbly fun and warm sentiment enhanced by a score full memorable melodies and smart lyrics." Full Review
“Looks so fresh, you want to pinch its cheek...Helmer Jerry Zaks and choreographer Warren Carlyle have done a great restoration job on the old girl, while refraining from the urge to tart her up for modern tastes…Midler instinctively understands the avid thirst for life that prompts Dolly’s comic desperation and gives depth to her character…Although none of the secondary players will knock you out, Zaks has cast an entirely watchable cast of reliables." Full Review
"Bette Midler won our love in 'Hello, Dolly!' just by wiggling her pinky finger. Donna Murphy has to work harder, earning our affection with a beautifully acted, powerfully sung and earnestly felt performance. Best of all, she has the comic chops to laugh her way into this iconic role. In the brief three months since it opened, this pristine production...has become smoother, slicker and more sure of itself." Full Review
“A blissful Broadway revival…The part of Dolly is exquisitely suited to Midler’s enormous warmth, savvy and drive. It’s hard to imagine a better match of actor and role: It is, in a word, perfection…‘Hello, Dolly!’ may be a vehicle for its star, but this revival treats it like a vintage Rolls-Royce. From the rousing overture on, everything about the production, directed with joyful aplomb by Jerry Zaks, gleams with old-fashioned charm…Jerry Herman’s exuberant score is a show-tune bonanza.” Full Review
"The characters address the audience from time to time, which gives Midler a chance to connect with us by drawing on who she really is, as well as whom she wants to portray...The role of Dolly isn’t necessarily tailor-made for Midler—she’s infinitely more complicated and funny and there isn’t a corny bone in her body—but she has remade the character in her own image: as a scrappy trickster with needs and vulnerabilities." Full Review
“A bluntly nostalgic and volubly entertaining revival…If Midler once had the voice for the part, seven decades and eight shows a week have worn it into something a lot raspier...But the spirit of the show is so infectious, and Midler such an adored and adorable presence, that the audience applauds her at entrance, exit and several times in between…This relentless energy sometimes feels exhausting…But when it works, especially in the ensemble numbers, the show is a riotous delight." Full Review
“Midler's outsized comic personality merges beautifully with Dolly...She has an ideal partner in David Hyde Pierce…It doesn't take very long for one to realize how efficient ‘Hello, Dolly!’ is when it comes to spreading delight. Not that it is a perfect piece of entertainment...At times the plot barely tracks...But...those irresistible Jerry Herman songs just keep on coming...And, a few instances of overplayed comedy aside, the supporting cast catches the wave of the star's exuberance." Full Review
"There are moments in Bette Midler’s 'Hello, Dolly!' that offer unsurpassed entertainment…There are not enough of those perfect moments, however, to justify the ardor for this unexceptional, pastel-hued fourth Broadway revival, nor to explain fully the exuberant acclaim for its star…The real heavy-lifting is done by the vigorously athletic, inexhaustible and sometimes exhausting ensemble…Bette does own Dolly, but Dolly doesn’t always live in Bette; the melding of the two is only periodic." Full Review
“Midler brings all of her considerable talents to bear in this scintillating revival…Director Jerry Zaks, Midler, and a superb company breathe new life into the old gal. Zaks and choreographer Warren Carlyle give the show speed and youthful energy…Though her voice is limited, she brings reams of subtext to each number…Hyde-Pierce’s ultra-stuffy Horace Vandergelder is the perfect foil for Midler’s life-embracing Dolly…This joyous ‘Hello, Dolly!’ is a loving salute to a past tradition.” Full Review
“The brilliant alignment of performer and role is all that really needs to have happened here…The production is as close to homage as a modern show dares get to a work that even in 1964 was something of a throwback…It’s so old-fashioned it seems almost avant-garde...In the long line of memorable Dollys I’ve seen or heard, Midler is by far the most natural and inviting…Even when the staging is a bit sloppy and the comedy not so forthcoming, Midler sails right through as if tickled.” Full Review
“Ms. Midler’s singing voice is in a desperate, sometimes shocking state of disrepair…As for the rest of the performance, Ms. Midler doesn’t even bother to act…She can’t dance and isn’t funny…David Hyde Pierce is all wrong as Horace…What’s more, he and Ms. Midler have no romantic chemistry at all, which makes the show even less dramatically plausible...Every supporting performance is a grotesque caricature…As for the musical numbers, they’re camped up to the hilt.” Full Review
“Hello, Dolly!’ itself is terrific, and director Jerry Zaks and his unassailable company have elevated it to a stratospheric level…It's dopey, predictable, and perfect. This is due in no tiny part to the airtight construction of Stewart's book…Herman's score is more memorable still…To the extent that this ‘Hello, Dolly!’ stumbles—and it isn't much—it's because Midler falls short…She may be a gleaming star, but she's not a transformative one…About as good as the Broadway musical gets.” Full Review
“Jerry Zaks’ zingingly wonderful revival…For decades, Midler has known how to make the stage her own. She does so here…She makes every one of Jerry Herman’s cheerfully melodic tunes a tied-with-a-ribbon gift…Hyde Pierce bombasts beautifully…Baldwin is stunning and stately…Especially, and not to be forgotten, are the dancers and their tireless, athletic, work-like-play antics before, during and after the unforgettable title number.” Full Review
“Midler is ideal to inherit the sacred mantle of Dolly Gallagher Levi…Midler still appears to be adjusting to the role, looking and sounding tentative at times. But more often than not, she eagerly commands the stage and keeps the audience in a state of euphoria…The production lovingly recreates the look and feel of Gower Champion’s iconic 1964 production, bursting at the seams with old-fashioned showmanship, hyperkinetic energy and stylized movement." Full Review
"I’ll just come right out and say it: I prefer Donna Murphy over Bette Midler in 'Hello, Dolly!'...Murphy fires from all cylinders and never lets up, bursting with vitality and comic ingenuity...Murphy is also in full voice. Her powerhouse singing takes the production numbers up by more than just a notch...People should not shy away from this lavish, lovingly old-fashioned, euphoric revival simply because they cannot score tickets to see it with Midler." Full Review
“The good news is that director Jerry Zaks' production matches Midler's life-giving work every step of the way…Zaks' direction is more an act of loving restoration with modifications than an overhaul, but it benefits immeasurably from a cast that takes its cue from the two leads' expert timing…As a shot of sparkling, old-fashioned popular entertainment, this deluxe revival of ‘Hello, Dolly!’ is about as good as it gets, crowned by star casting that fits like a glove.” Full Review
"Donna Murphy breathes her own distinctive brand of joy and generosity into the revival...She brings her own megawatt glow; her peerless musical-comedy technique, deep-dish characterization and supple vocals are like a new coat of lacquer on a perfect production...What makes this revival so satisfying is that it goes beyond the rewards of a champion star turn to deliver pleasure in every aspect." Full Review
“A dazzling revival…The show is an old-school comic jewel filled with great songs. The book then as now is as tight and bouncy as a late-19th century corset and bustle...The whole cast shines…But this show’s all about Dolly...It’s a role made for personality. And Midler has that—and then some….Type out all the superlatives you can because nights like this in the theater—in which tingles continue from overture to final bow—make you feel overjoyed. That is a tonic for troubled times!” Full Review
"'Hello, Dolly!' is still a joyous, giddy delight with two-time Tony winner Donna Murphy in Bette Midler’s role...Murphy is a star with dazzling comic chops and a voice to match — and she’s giving the gutsiest star turn in town. And, at times, the funniest." Full Review
"Midler eats up the wild applause as if it is food to her soul and gives back as good as she gets...Is her voice perfect for this music? No...but she gets the intent across in spades. If you want a beautiful voice, look no further than Baldwin’s hauntingly gorgeous tones...This show is in every way over-the-top broad, campy, kitschy and corny, taking it all to a new level, but the genius of this production is everyone is on the same page thanks to Jerry Zaks." Full Review
“Midler gives the customers what they paid for, along with a ton of heart…There’s plenty more to love as well in this somewhat mixed-bag of a production…The two other principals are every bit as endearing as the star…Act I is a less sure affair for Midler...Dolly’s big Act I closer was limp the night I saw it…More problematic is Warren Carlyle’s choreography...which lacks precision and power...By Act II, Midler was in full command of the show.” Full Review
"Murphy is absolutely wonderful as the meddling, multitasking matchmaker...Murphy’s Dolly is gabby, game and gleeful as she dispenses the pleasures of Jerry Herman’s songs and Michael Stewart’s lines...Jerry Zaks’ production is better. The dancing of Warren Carlyle’s choreography is sharper and funnier. The sound is more crisp, the ensemble more assured and the accompanying stars perfectly aligned." Full Review
See it if you like the classics. and for Bette obviously...although in my opinion Gavin Creel stole the show.
Don't see it if you are expecting something modern. It's an old school musical and this production is not trying to modernize it one bit.
See it if if you love classic Broadway & of course BETTE BETTE BETTE & DHP. The whole cast is just fabulous & all are clearly having a total blast.
Don't see it if you only like serious, more modern Broadway shows. This is a loving faithful rendition of a silly, funny story with singable songs.
See it if You are a fan of Bette Midler or David Hyde Pierce and you enjoy colorful costumes and great songs. It's a classic musical!
Don't see it if You're not a Bette Midler fan (go on a Tuesday night then). At times it felt a Bette Midler concert rather than a great musical.
See it if You want to see a classic musical given a terrific, high-powered production. Two and half hours of bliss. Great cast.
Don't see it if You like your musicals edgy and sad.
See it if Bette Midler. Bette Midler. Also beautifully costumed with a cast that's having a great time.
Don't see it if It's going to bother you that the plot creaks and has gaping holes. This is a showcase, pure and simple.
See it if Donna Murphy is performing! Bette who?? The choreography is so fun to watch. Gavin Creel, Taylor Trensch & Beanie Feldstein steal the show.
Don't see it if you expect a modern show that has more profound meaning. This is a good old fashioned musical, done in the best way.
See it if you want to see yet another spectacular star turn by Donna Murphy. I specifically waited for her to start to see this & don't regret it!
Don't see it if you hate excellence, fun, slapstick humor, charm, and old-fashioned Broadway shows. Also if you have no joy in your cold, cold heart.
See it if typical Broadway musical fluff, at it's finest, is right up your alley. This charming, dated revival is everything that it promises & more!
Don't see it if a thought provoking piece is the only type of show that will satisfy your theater cravings. Otherwise take a break from life & leave smiling
See it if Donna Murphy sparkles in this crackerjack, cartoon pop-up revival of the classic Broadway musical with Herman's score still a charmer
Don't see it if Sure, it's a little dated & book-wise its clunky but perfect escapist antidote to the age of Trump. Hyde Pierce leads a superb ensemble
See it if You like fun dancing, talented performers, gorgeous sets, beautiful costumes, catchy songs you know. You want to leave the theater smiling.
Don't see it if I don't know why you wouldn't want to see this hopeful, moving, funny, entertaining piece of theatre.
See it if Heartwarming and receptive audience. Exquisite set and costume designs. Wonderful ensemble. Creel and Baldwin were terrific.
Don't see it if Being a Midler fan would make the show more enjoyable. The book/material is dated and sillily entertaining.
See it if I saw this production with Donna Murphy as Dolly Madison. I wasn't disappointed!! Everything about this show was PERFECT! Just Go See It ;~)
Don't see it if If you only want to see the show's star: Ms. Midler, check the schedule to see when Bette will be back in the production. But Donna's Great!
See it if you want a big spectacle of a musical, or want to see Gavin Creel being the national treasure that he is.
Don't see it if you can't get a ticket for under $75. I can't imagine paying more than that and feeling like I got my money's worth.
See it if brings to life Jerry Herman's memorable score w superb performances in ALL roles, choreography, set & costumes; Donna star in own right
Don't see it if this is an unapologetic old-style vaudevillian musical where everything/storytelling, humor, dancing, etc. is big, brassy & un-ironic
See it if You enjoy big classical musicals with great acting, singing, choreography, and sets.
Don't see it if You are looking for a show that isn't fluffy.
Also Saw Donna Murphy who was excellent.
See it if you want to see Bette Midler, like Hello Dolly, enjoy old-fashioned musicals
Don't see it if you are looking for a more contemporary musical, you want more plot to your musical