Closed 2h 15m
Rocktopia
Midtown W
70

Rocktopia NYC Reviews and Tickets

70%
(297 Reviews)
Positive
63%
Mixed
23%
Negative
14%
Members say
Entertaining, Great singing, Disappointing, Ambitious, Indulgent

About the Show

This musical extravaganza celebrates the fusion of the best rock songs of the past century with some of the greatest classical music ever written. Now on Broadway through April 29 only.

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Member Reviews (297)

64
Banal, Fluffy, Overrated

See it if If you like a corny story with okay/ average music.

Don't see it if It is not really worth seeing, Dee Snider is washed up and tired in this production. If you like a good musical with a good story.

40
Banal, Cliched, Cheesy, Pointless

See it if you want to see classic rock karaoke w/a PowerPoint backdrop of random stock images & some classical music thrown in to make it feel grand.

Don't see it if you have to wash your hair or do some laundry. Read more

Critic Reviews (33)

March 27th, 2018

"About two hours in, the touring concert...had settled into a benign, dull groove. Then the slide show, which until then had been mostly sunsets and rolling clouds, jolted me awake...The vocalists generally acquit themselves well enough...Ultimately, the real problem is the set list's utter blandness...Taken individually, these songs are in the canon for a reason, of course; one after another, their effect is numbing."
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March 27th, 2018

"A misguided attempt to combine two musical forms...The musical mishmashes on display rarely come off effectively, more often feeling like gimmickry...The snippets from well-known classical pieces followed by bombastic renditions of overly familiar rock songs prove novel for the first few minutes...Over the course of two-and-a-half hours, it becomes a punishing exercise...A few of the numbers work thanks to the sometimes clever arrangements by Fleischer."
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March 27th, 2018

"Heads bob. Arms sway. Hands clap. And, frequently, eyes roll - at least mine did...Blurs the lines between famous rock hits and classical ones...Gets old fast because a sameness sets in...Too much lung-busting, facial-distorting 'American Idol' -style singing and a Celtic violin overload...Clearly co-creators Evan, who also sings, and conductor Fleischer like to think big. But they don't always think coherently...Weirder still is the who's who projected on stage."
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March 27th, 2018

"Turns out to be far more on the rock side of the concept than on the classical side...The result is thoroughly half-baked...Even when the mash-ups sounds more or less smooth there's nothing new to be gained...More invested in pandering to baby boomer nostalgia...Whatever crumbs of pleasure are to be found...come solely from the singers...Considering how unevenly balanced the acoustic is, one can't help but wonder if it was even worth bringing in the orchestral elements."
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March 29th, 2018

"A huge problem with the classical moments is that though were composed to be performed without amplification, 'Rocktopia' blasts them through the sound system with the same lack of finesse used for hits by Elton John and Styx. Perhaps if they pulled a full switcheroo, having the classics performed in rock style with the newer stuff unplugged and given the longhair treatment, 'Rocktopia' would have a little more bite to it."
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March 30th, 2018

"A big, loud, in-your-face, knock-down-drag-out evening of very well-known classical melodies, very-well known classic rock tunes...A lot of the mash ups were less than graceful. Yes, the setlist was all arena rock anthems. Yes it caters to baby-boomer nostalgia. Yes, some of the projections were just silly...It is, however, a hell of a lot of fun! What it may lack in sophistication, it makes up for in pure exuberance. It is two plus hours of loud, ruckus, joyful noise."
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March 27th, 2018

"The monumentally silly idea-and not a new one, either is mashing up...rock warhorses with classical music warhorses...The result is both are coarsely cheapened...Most of the blame has to be placed on Fleischer, who carpentered the bloated arrangements and who conducts them for maximum deafening results...Everything is amplified, including, the assaulted arias...Everything from start to finish is obstreperous."
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March 27th, 2018

"The earnest spectacle, the overstated reverence...It knows its audience, and it serves them honestly and without cynicism...Co-creators Evan and Fleischer, respectively featured onstage as vocalist and 'maestro', have not cooked up some cockeyed plot or artist hagiography as an excuse to string together a series of familiar tunes. This is not a jukebox musical but a concert, and as such it can cater unabashedly to baby-boomer nostalgia."
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March 27th, 2018

"Seems more fitting for Las Vegas...Vincent's highflying tenor is a nimble instrument, and he knows how to work a crowd, rock-god style...The connections uniting the selections are sometimes rather vague or hard to discern, although the music is stitched together with some finesse...It's all played live...but the amplification is of such a roof-rattling level that you'd never know if it wasn't...Not a show to my taste."
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March 28th, 2018

"A hokey musical extravaganza that mashes together classical, rock and opera. Singalongs, coerced clapping, dancing in the seats and standing ovations abound. The cheerfully innocuous entertainment level is comparable to that of a bland PBS pledge break concert...Is it awful? Spectacular? Craptastic? Campy? 'Rocktopia' is arguably all of these adjectives in various gradations depending on one’s taste."
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March 28th, 2018

"Eccentric and addictive...An impressive feat from its opening notes to its final crescendo...The evening is a well-oiled machine, and each musician who graces the stage shows exceptional charisma and technical accuracy. The vocal power of the five singers is a force to behold...Doesn't hesitate to give us what we want as a listener...The marriage of classical music with modern rock doesn't debase the age-old symphonies in the slightest...A true rock experience."
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March 28th, 2018

"'Has some good moments, but it suffers from indecision – rock show or night at the theater – resulting in a mushy show that works too hard and repeatedly gets in its own way...At its best when rock and opera intertwine...The mishmash of styles begins to wear thin, however, long before intermission...The orchestra is very good...They offer a refreshing respite...It’s too loud; it tries too hard; it’s a bit cheesy, but in the end it is good fun. Just bring ear plugs."
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April 3rd, 2018

"Can best be described as what might happen if Mozart and Beethoven were having a party and Freddie Mercury and Pete Townsend walked in...The show is impressive from the start, with an open-feel stage complete with highly skilled and energetic back-up singers...Every single artist was mind-blowingly good, but it was Lowery who won the audience's hearts...'Rocktopia' is at once both clever and joyous, both disciplined and radical, and certainly earns its title of Musical Revolution."
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March 30th, 2018

"Sadly this concert-style event only made me value the originals a thousand times more...I couldn't wait to get out of the theatre and listen to the true rock legends...not these fake posers...This concoction felt phony and misguided...There were a few moments when the concept of what they were trying to do actually worked...Every number feels obvious and standard, sung by some fine vocalists playing stereotypical characterizations of what a 'rock star' should look and sound like."
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April 3rd, 2018

"Right up until Anne Frank’s appearance, 'Rocktopia' made some sense...There is no unity between the differing styles of music-though the resulting chaos does make for an oddly entertaining spectacle...I’m not sure 'Rocktopia' has any business getting political, particularly in times like these...The show is too gleefully hilarious to be actually offensive."
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March 27th, 2018

"Some of the song pairings work better than others, for the open-minded 'Rocktopia' is an intriguing idea...No shortage of musical talent. 'Rocktopia' does, however, have a shortage of stagecraft or stage smarts...Godawful tacky projections...Occasionally – maybe a total of 15 minutes out of the two hours – there is video artistry on those screens. But for most of the time, they might as well have written on them: 'we’re trying to save money;' that message came through clearly anyway."
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March 27th, 2018

"Uneven attempt to intermingle 'classic rock' with classical music and even a touch of opera with alarming back-and-forth speed...However, here's the good news: when 'Rocktopia' gives the fans what they came for -- what might be termed the ultimate 'jukebox musical' - it can be a truly entertaining experience...As for the show's supposed purpose, the hoped-for connections between the music of true yesteryear and recent decades only rarely take hold."
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March 27th, 2018

"One of those odd, crowd-pleasing…shows that occasionally show up on Broadway and drive traditionalists up the wall…The renditions are all traditional, none offering notably original takes…There's nothing here you haven't seen before; too often,…the [video] images distract from the performances in front of them. The idea of including…some artfully created…background on the songs, including composer, original artists, year of creation, and so forth, seems never to have occurred."
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March 28th, 2018

"There wasn’t enough aspirin in the house to save what was to be a painful and head-splitting afternoon...The projections design looked like random screen savers and did not connect to the material in one iota or tell a story...The singers seemed more intent on power, than emotional context...There wasn't one moment where the singer and the song became one...Felt like 'Glee' performing live 30 years later...The biggest problem is the arrangements, which are unimpressive and off-base."
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April 17th, 2018

"One of the most garishly self-indulgent, sublimely absurd, bland, and loud experiences I have had in any Broadway theatre...A one-trick rock concert in which snippets of top-shelf, survey deep classical compositions are mashed-up with and swallowed whole by beloved rock songs...An interesting idea that got far too many yeses along the way. The arrangements are messy, obvious, and often forced, and the sound mixing so blunt that any effort at craft seems beside the point."
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March 27th, 2018

"Some major missed opportunities for expanding awareness and appreciation...What 'Rocktopia' does offer, is an array of talent...All of the musicians are impressive, but Bruno’s guitar solos are especially electrifying, and Nesbitt’s featured performances on Celtic violin are the most consistently thrilling highlights...Though 'Rocktopia' has some rousing peaks and powerful performances that will have you rocking and cheering, it isn’t quite the 'classical revolution' it claims to be."
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April 3rd, 2018

"Rachmaninoff is not rock and, with two different species having nothing in common, this marriage is doomed to hit the rocks...Sometimes the images are unseemly...'Rocktopia' is a gimmicky two-and-a-half hour production guaranteed to please very few, although the performers do struggle to urge clap-alongs and arm-waving...As one kind theatergoer remarked, 'It’s not bad enough to walk out, but not good enough to recommend.'"
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March 29th, 2018

"A different kind of jukebox musical, with no narrative, consisting of overly familiar songs...An up-and-down affair, as vocal histrionics get carried away, the setlist is about as standard as it comes, and amateurish, seemingly unrelated visuals are projected onto fifteen large, vertical piano keys...But then something magical happens, where it all suddenly comes together for an absolutely smashing last few numbers that brought the crowd to its feet."
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April 1st, 2018

"Basically a concert, but with its Broadway trappings, it could be a final step in the evolution of the jukebox musical...Make sure that just about every number gets a tumultuous arrangement, with a compact 20-piece symphony orchestra well amplified, a rock band, an energetic chorus and featured singers...And voila!...You've got yourself a show...'Rocktopia' may well be a shortcut to tinnitus, but it’s also surprisingly inventive and at times exhilarating. Be tempted and be warned."
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March 27th, 2018

"A misbegotten new concert mashup...The very concept feels so dated...Fleischer and Evan stick mostly to obvious choices...Some of Fleischer's mashups don't really work...The upstage LED screens...offer the silliest and most on-the-nose visuals imaginable...The singers are mostly solid, and there are some genuine highlights...But on the whole, this is one classical-rock collaboration that would have more than just Beethoven rolling over."
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March 28th, 2018

"It's fun to hear some favorites, whether you're into rock or the classics, but it's the twist that raises some questions...Just because it can be played with a rock beat -- and very, very loudly, which seems to be the theme of most of this show's sound design -- doesn't mean it should be. Less is more might be a good philosophy to follow here...The idea of a concert fusing different musical styles is good. It just needs a bit more orchestration, pun intended."
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March 27th, 2018

"Much of the evening is basically like watching an enormously talented cover band performing classic rock oldies, it is nonetheless consistently entertaining. However, although most of the mash-ups are melodic and innovative, not everything works...Gifted singers...Not really a Broadway show. It's also nothing like a traditional rock concert or a classical recital at Carnegie Hall. Whatever it is, it's certainly unique and that must be why the show has such a following worldwide."
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March 27th, 2018

"A whole lot of cliched yet still powerful classic rock fun...The evening as a whole leans toward the pleasantly accessible...The only real failure is a too-gentle version of Led Zeppelin powerhouse 'Kashmir' accompanied by images, not of the region of India that gives the song its name and sound, but of Egypt...The most rock-solid part of the show: the vocals...The most consistently magnificent - and versatile - singer is Chloe Lowery...Recommended."
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March 29th, 2018

"If you enjoy both rock and classical music and you want to see them combined in a unique way, you may enjoy this show. If you are looking for a show with a story or any sort of plot, this is not it. This is basically a glorified concert. The voices are good and the songs should be recognizable...This is not a show for young children who probably could not sit through it. Older children who are particularly interested in rock and classical music might enjoy it."
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March 28th, 2018

"A classical revolution...Everybody works. Hard. Conductor, musicians, soloists, vocalists...Nothing looks easy, nobody holds back. Every number builds to wall shaking. It's seventy percent an old fashioned outdoor arena type rock show brought to Broadway welded to a road show classical concert...Applause is summoned - and earned during the first act, after which there seems to be a general sorting in the audience, from the standing ovationers, to the bolters, and the snoozers."
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March 29th, 2018

"It’s not a bad concept. Many music theorists agree that there is a kinship between classical music and popular music...Moderately entertaining, but an overall disappointing attempt to meld the two musical genres...There are one or two other numbers that work as well, but overall the numbers play out as classic rock songs with classical music introductions, and even then some of the introductions don’t give the songs their just due."
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March 27th, 2018

"One of the highlight vocals from the first half of the show was Chloe Lowery belting out Heart's 'Alone,' in an eloquent, expressive fashion that complimented the neat orchestral arrangement...Overall, 'Rocktopia' was a solid Broadway production...The all-star cast of entertainers were able to fuse the classical compositions with the smash singles on the contemporary radio airwaves. It was definitely a modern-day rock opera that is recommended for fans of rock and classical music."
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March 28th, 2018

"Uniquely relevant and musically satisfying...The wonderful production has the best of the best performing an arsenal of classical compositions and some of the biggest radio hits of all time...Aside from the incredible performances and wide array of beautiful music, the thing that makes 'Rocktopia' so uniquely special is its scalability. Here is a production that will change as the weeks roll on and new guest vocalists are introduced...An ever-evolving production that’s never the same twice."
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