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"'Miss Saigon' is as mechanically melodramatic as any theatrical potboiler from the early 20th century...It’s not as if such stories don’t still have the power to stir suspense and tears. But this eventful, sung-through production out of London, directed by Laurence Connor, feels about as affecting as a historical diorama, albeit a lavishly appointed one. This despite the hard and dedicated work of its earnest cast." Full Review
"The show retains everything that made it noteworthy in the first place: Schönberg's ear-worm melodies, a massive ensemble of attractive dancers, and a helicopter landing onstage...Connor has opted for the more-is-more approach...When you look beyond the hulking scenery and 'American Idol'-style glory notes, you can see 'Miss Saigon' for what it really is: a bruising indictment of American self-pity in an age in which we still control the lion's share of wealth and power." Full Review
"Classy revitalization of an old, presumably boring property that proves to have plenty of life in it yet. The upscale revival should bring a tear to old-timers with romantic memories of the original schmaltzy score, while titillating newbies...The production values alone are a jaw-dropper...And just wait for his big getaway in 'The American Dream,' a show-stopper—and a career-maker for Briones." Full Review
"True to its operatic source, the sung-through drama of 'Miss Saigon' is better conveyed via its sweeping, power-ballad-driven music than by its lyrics...Nevertheless, strong performances keep the proceedings stimulating, particularly that of Jon Jon Briones, especially charismatic as The Engineer...Powerfully voiced Eva Noblezada combines sensitive nobility and naiveté as Kim, and Alistair Brammer's rocker-belting Chris effectively displays the steady growth of PTSD." Full Review
"In condemning the exploitation of the Vietnamese while in alternate breaths exploiting them for Broadway-scale titillation, the show tries to have it both ways...It’s one thing to dramatize the degradation of women; it’s another thing to wink while doing it...The unrelieved hyper-emphasis of Laurence Connor’s direction basically squashes whatever might be good in 'Miss Saigon'...I am also sorry to report that the helicopter looks like a manatee." Full Review
"It’s less a song-and-dance affair in any recognizable sense than it is an ’80s summer movie, weighed down with ridiculous special F/X...Boublil’s lyrics are awfully leaden and generic, and Schönberg churns out predictably pseudo-Asian passages throughout the score—pentatonic patterns, flutes and plucked strings—the musicological equivalent of yellowface...Diversity on Broadway should be celebrated, but give actors of color characters we all can care about." Full Review
“Schönberg's score is unfailingly melodic, but it doesn't add the requisite gravity and dramatic heft to such potboiler plotting. This is not for lack of trying…The lyrics are distressingly generic. It doesn't help that the characters are mostly one-dimensional and prone to dramatic flip-flops…Still, if you're a fan of ‘Miss Saigon,’ this is a first-class revival, both in terms of its cast and production values.” Full Review
"The production’s impressive visual spectacle, lively staging and crowd-pleasing vocal calisthenics cannot completely mask a script that leans heavily on emotional manipulation and one-dimensional storytelling...Perhaps a miraculous cast could take such blunt-force emotional instruments and soften them into credibility...If the new 'Miss Saigon' is powerful, it’s because of the powerhouse singing...In fairness, the revival delivers on the thrills that its fans are surely expecting." Full Review
“Is it good? By no means. But it is big and happily boasts a lead actress who with better material might just become a star. The story is over-heated nonsense, but then so is most opera…The sense of the creative team rehashing what worked before in ‘Les Miz’ is palpable...The tunes are almost astonishingly bad from start to finish both in words and music and all the spectacle in the world can’t hide that…Still, spectacle there is, put across by an able cast." Full Review
"Sure, it's a brash, broad-strokes saga with questionable racial and gender representation and a taste for salacious vulgarity. But although director Laurence Connor has adhered to the basic contours of the original, his grittier approach exposes teeth in the material that I don't recall previously being so sharp...Noblezada is a legitimate discovery, just as Salonga was the first time around...This is brawny, crowd-pleasing entertainment." Full Review
“This blockbuster is bulletproof against critical assaults on its...mawkishness, racial stereotyping, melodramatic overkill, and substantial lack of comedy...Still...it's hard to deny the show's ability to zing theatregoers' hearts...Briones, who's played the Engineer in multiple productions, captures his treacherous survivalist instincts without losing audience sympathy. He helps make this an entertaining, if unexceptional, revival of a show whose problems have become more apparent with age.” Full Review
"It’s an opera for the tone-deaf: The dramatic gestures are broad and banal, and the faux-rock songs are exercises in louder-is-betterness whose tunes go round and round in tight little circles of melodic monotony. As for the lyrics, by Mr. Boublil and Richard Maltby Jr., they’re by turns tawdry and trite...While 'Miss Saigon' has a can’t-miss plot—it’s as potent today as it was for Puccini—the score, at least to my ear, is unendurable." Full Review
"'Miss Saigon' is more relevant and heartbreaking today than when it premiered on Broadway in 1991...As directed by Laurence Connor, this solid and satisfying revival builds on the extraordinary visuals, nonstop adrenaline, sweeping emotions and pulsating musical score that characterized the original production while adding an unmissable brutality and grittiness...Briones, Noblezada and Brammer are giving high-intensity performances that stand on par with their predecessors." Full Review
"Here it comes again just about exactly 26 years after its first landing. It huffs and puffs and settles itself awkwardly but tenaciously...Throughout, everything possible to be done to overwhelm the patrons has been done. So congratulations of a sort go out to Connor for directing with power...As to the performers: Briones is a marvel. He’s a reason to see this bloated whip-up. Noblezada, Brammer and Clarke are all fine, but curiously, their singing is pitched at a strange adolescent level." Full Review
"The most mega of megamusicals. For this mounting, though, the writers and director have striven to strip everything but the helicopter of that 'mega' status. And without it, not only does 'Miss Saigon' not work, it barely registers...Connor's sluggish staging, when it's not overly obvious hits the brakes on an evening that ought to be in near-constant acceleration...Then there are the performances, none of which rises above adequate...Their concerns become inconsequential...So does the show." Full Review
“Ms. Noblezada’s has a gorgeous voice, but her chemistry with Mr. Brammer lacks the sense of love and betrayal needed to keep us on the edge of our seats. The emotional intensity just seems lacking and ‘Miss Saigon’ no longer seems epic. Bob Avian’s choreography lacks the luster the original had…If you have never seen this show, you will be entertained, but if you saw the original you will be underwhelmed, for the heat is gone in 'Saigon.'” Full Review
"This production is sensational in every way: visually and sonically (often painfully so). Most important, it’s brilliantly cast...'Miss Saigon' is a show that eats its cheesecake and has it too, like a skin flick that runs a banner at the end promising to donate proceeds to a home for wayward girls...The show’s high point, 'The American Dream'...is more chilling than I’ve ever seen it...The production’s other big discovery is Eva Noblezada...Noblezada radiates conviction." Full Review
"This bracing new production from London reminds that whirlybirds can’t whip up emotions. Only good actors can do that. The revival has plenty of them...Noblezada impresses Kim. She sings from a deep well of emotion and gets under your skin...Briones brings sleaze and sly humor to the role...His gritty take on 'American Dream' is a highlight. Too bad he’s also saddled with a gratuitous 'Make American great again' line. It mars the show's otherwise fine-tuned return." Full Review
"The helicopter may not be completely the real thing but with the help of lighting and strong fans, it's still pretty amazing...Using that spectacle factor and the quality of the singing as a baseline to judge whether 'Miss Saigon' holds up, the answer is 'yes.' This is the biggest, most spectacle-rich show in town...Noblezada sings with enough feeling to touch even the most cynical members of the audience...Current events make this new production as sadly timely as it is entertaining." Full Review
"The new 'Miss Saigon' is as hypnotic in its storytelling as it is overwrought in depicting its small tale of five people caught up in events beyond their control. As one might expect from one of the blockbuster British musicals, everything about it is huge. Luckily time has made its underlying theme of the fate of refugees caught up in war both relevant and immense too." Full Review
"Once again the music is merely loud when it needs to be affecting...Rather than giving us an impression of the repressive regime, director Laurence Connor and choreographer Bob Avian turn these songs into typical Broadway showstoppers...If only the songwriters had recycled more from Kander and Ebb...The lyrics by Boublil and Matlby Jr. can be summed up in their creation of a character named John. He isn’t named Bruce because Bruce doesn’t rhyme with Saigon." Full Review
"The story packs an unavoidable emotional punch, even if you do see it coming, largely due to the performance of Ms. Noblezada...She simply nails all of it...Briones is doubtless giving the best performance of his long career...The large cast is uniformly excellent...The design elements are appropriately impressive...The pop-rock score is sometimes tepid and often repetitive, but when it has to soar it does so, usually on the wings of Eva Noblezada’s beautiful soprano voice." Full Review
"Eva Noblezada has an enormous, poignant strength and a piercing voice that can delicately float as confidently as it blasts. Alistair Brammer has the voice, the jaw and the muscles of a gentle American giant...The story feels more urgent amid renewed refugee tragedies and our consciousness of the sex trade. And the narrative—helped by unusually graceful lyrics—almost distract from the generic Euro-pop ballads and anthems that sound like many we’ve heard before." Full Review
"The ballad-heavy score remains, for the most part, slightly soporific; the Vietnam-era-set libretto is both melodramatic and sometimes offensive, and Connor’s direction favors assaulting the senses whenever possible. That means the helicopter is bigger and more realistic than before. And the first act somehow seems livelier, in part due to its complete lack of subtlety. But the only real reason to even consider seeing this show are the outstanding performances from the three leads." Full Review
"An elaborate staging, which at times vies for attention with the talented cast...Briones is the focal point of this 'Miss,' part-character and part-narrator, emceeing his way across Asia with gyrating hips and snarky asides...Noblezada is effective...The helicopter scene remains phenomenal...My issues with 'Miss Saigon' aren’t deal-breakers: the orchestrations sometimes unintentionally subvert the presence of the actors. And the initial bond between Kim and Chris isn’t sketched out enough." Full Review
See it if You love drama, emotional musicals, love triangles, and amazing stage effects.
Don't see it if You dislike dramatic storylines, can't handle a little raunchiness (it starts in a brothel), or stories set during wartime.
See it if the tour comes to you & you’ve never seen it. The memorable score lifts uneven material. Briones, Noblezada & Ilaw gave great Bway turns.
Don't see it if you’ve seen it before. The changes made to the libretto since its original London run have lessened the show rather than improved it.
See it if You love this show, or great musicals in general. It is a great revival. See it before it closes!
Don't see it if You don't like the show or music, you are looking for something mindless and upbeat.
See it if you like revivals of classic musicals, you like big productions, you enjoy epic musicals
Don't see it if you are looking for a small musical, you don't care for musicals with war theme
See it if You want to be drawn into the story and/or if you want to care about the characters. You want all of your emotions triggered.
Don't see it if You don’t want all of your emotions to surface, or if you do not like large-scale productions.
See it if Great music, dancing, and production. J.Briones as the pimp (“Engineer”) was funny and engaging. The story had some substance.
Don't see it if Dated gender stereotypes. Egocentric view of United States. Kim’s unnecessary sacrifice of herself at the end was not believable.
See it if Revisiting a classic musical, or reliving a part of American history and theater history is relevant in your life.
Don't see it if You are expecting dialog. This is more like an American opera. Great singing by leads and chorus.
See it if you enjoy seeing a spectacle & a historically important musical. Music is by the same composer as Les Mis.
Don't see it if you want a feel-good show. It’s filled with lackluster performances & still features overt orientalism that I can do without in 2017.
See it if You are looking for an epic, big budget revival of a classic show
Don't see it if You don't like simplistic romantic arcs and some well-meaning but ultimately racially stereotyped characters
See it if You want some great staging.The show LOOKS great. Some good performances (Kim/Engineer). A COUPLE of very nice songs.
Don't see it if You don't like hearing over sung, over amplified,screeching power ballads and a predictable story line. A couple of clunkers in the cast.
See it if 99% perfect big-budget musical until that 2-bitter bittersweet ending. Really? Is that the only way to end a Love Triangle? Otherwise GREAT!
Don't see it if Lotsa duets in this show, maybe more than Phantom, so if U hated PotO then U might skip this. Shows a dark side of Viet Nam so there's that!
See it if I would put up there with the great classics. It has everything, great music, acting and staging. It is a powerhouse of a musical.
Don't see it if it is a period piece, it can get slow for some.
See it if You've never seen it; a bombastic melodrama with unmemorable songs save two, but veteran understudy Billy Bustamante is worth catching. You
Don't see it if You disliked the similar Phantom & Le Miz big anthem-like musicals; this show means well politically but falls short musically & lyrically.
See it if This Broadway show feels already like it is on tour across the country. Besides the poor set design & uneven performances, the story is meh
Don't see it if The female lead's vocal style keeps changing from Broadway Diva to Britney Spears and back throughout the evening.
See it if you can get past the exploitative nature of the story to enjoy a revival that's grander, more charged & better cast than any pvs incarnation
Don't see it if you can't handle a little over-sentimentality, irksome melodrama, racial stereotyping & a histrionic (though beautiful, at times) score.
See it if You want to see a modern "classic" musical/spectacle. You like Phantom, Cats, etc... You want to see one exceptional number (American Dream)
Don't see it if You're offended by drug use and prostitution on stage.
See it if wish to see a winner. Tremendous improvement in mistakes made in the original.. Powerful depiction of wartime tales. Casting imp since 91
Don't see it if you need an upbeat show, This does include many sad decisions made by the U.S and individuals. Perfection does not exist.
See it if you are in the mood for a great revival. It's firing on all cylinders and is visually very impressive.
Don't see it if you're looking for a modern show. Nothing about the plot/content has been updated here.
See it if you've never seen it before or for Jon Jon Briones' terrifically slimy Engineer. The rearrangement of musical numbers makes dramatic sense.
Don't see it if you expect any chemistry between romantic leads Noblezada & Brammer who appear to be making mental shopping lists in their headswhile acting