Call Me Madam
78

Call Me Madam NYC Reviews and Tickets

78%
(85 Reviews)
Positive
85%
Mixed
15%
Negative
0%
Members say
Entertaining, Great singing, Dated, Delightful, Fluffy

About the Show

A highlight of the second season of Encores! (1995) and featuring a memorable score by Irving Berlin, "Call Me Madam" centers around a brassy ambassador to the fictional European nation of Lichtenberg.


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Member Reviews (85)

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962 Reviews | 339 Followers
85
Dated, Fluffy, Great singing, Engaging, Weak script/great songs

See it if you want an escape. Entertaining Encores! Fun choreog/gr voices (incldg Cusack who hits notes, unlike Merman). Gr costumes. RandyR is wasted

Don't see it if you want substance. CMM is pure fun, w/memorable melodies. Needs cuts. Broad humor. Some lyrics get lost. Gr orchestra. Gotay/Worsham shine.

850 Reviews | 896 Followers
70
Dated, Slow, Great singing, Fluffy, Insipid

See it if you like Berlin's music and Great Singing. There are some very cute and catchy tunes. Terrific choreography​.

Don't see it if you want to see a comedy with a bare minimum of story tension. There is practically none in the entire show. Feels more like reading a diary Read more

826 Reviews | 1004 Followers
70
Cute, Slow, Great singing, Fluffy, Dated

See it if You enjoy beautiful singing. The cast is great and the songs and the orchestra sound wonderful

Don't see it if You dislike slower shows with little action or excitement. The songs are pretty but most don't further the plot

912 Reviews | 378 Followers
88
Delightful, Entertaining, Great singing, Old fashioned, Funny

See it if You like old style Broadway Musicals...with lots of fluff under furl, forbidden love and happy endings.

Don't see it if You want more than a fluffy good time. This is a fun old musical filled with fun moments done with a lot of fun actors seemingly having fun. Read more

MJK
677 Reviews | 187 Followers
68
Dated, Great singing, Pleasant, Entertaining

See it if you'd enjoy a jaunty, passé, old-fashioned Irving Berlin musical, staged with reverence & style by NYCC.

Don't see it if ur avoiding political(ish) theater, even if it strays about as far from our present political drama as possible; u hope to see Cusack shine. Read more

687 Reviews | 113 Followers
79
Dated, Entertaining, Cliched, Slow, Great singing

See it if Though very much of its era, quite tuneful & enjoyable Jones' choreo takes top honors while young lovers Gotay & Worsham charm us throughout

Don't see it if Cusack's Sally doesn't have the vocal power needed tho makes for a sexy Madam Political plot line is contrived w/ lame topical references

don
506 Reviews | 1002 Followers
80
Entertaining, Cliched, Overrated, Great singing

See it if Encores can do no wrong. Much talent gets to shine Sound system so improved. Male trio got to me. Dancing brings back memories

Don't see it if Seat location matters much. No Ethel Merman I prefer the first production of Call Me Madam by Encores..

605 Reviews | 268 Followers
75
With merman “madam” was a smash; without her it’s entertaining but has lost some of its mojo

See it if charming Irving Berlin score w several classic tunes/e.g., Lovely Day Today; normal Encores superb dancing and orchestra

Don't see it if thin silly plot; big hole in cast: Carmen Cusack tho engaging as lead does not have the voice or the “brass” to carry the show

Critic Reviews (13)

The New York Times
February 7th, 2019

"The pulse-lowering Encores! production...Cusack, a strong performer in other circumstances — is overpowered here by material that, if it can work at all today, can do so only when rough-handled by a mauler....'Call Me Madam' can’t support much political reflection, or any reflection, really...The songs mostly backfire dramatically by forcing us to sympathize with characters, especially Adams, whom the book otherwise wishes us to treat as objects of surprisingly coarse satire."
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The Hollywood Reporter
February 7th, 2019

"Sadly, Carmen Cusack doesn’t quite have the larger-than-life presence necessary to lift this flimsy star vehicle. She does, however, have a gorgeous voice and charm to spare, and these assets, along with Irving Berlin's terrific score and some deftly amusing supporting performances, make this 'Call Me Madam' enjoyable if not spectacular...For every joke that falls flat, there's a terrific song."
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AM New York
February 7th, 2019

"What passed as 'political satire' in 1950 does not have quite the same bite in 2019 — at least not as seen in the flat and tiresome revival...While 'Call Me Madam' has at least four good songs, much of the rest is second-rate operetta pastiche and the book is drawn-out. The Encores! revival still could have made for charming entertainment, but it is hampered by tone-deaf, draggy direction by Casey Hushion and an ineffective lead performance by Carmen Cusack."
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BroadwayWorld
February 7th, 2019

“’Call me Madam’ is breathing in new life in the 21st Century...Cusack's casual charm comes with a delightful drawl and spirited country-pop vocals...By no means a classic musical, ‘Call me Madam’ is nevertheless a classic style musical of its time, offering 1950s audiences some good laughs, some pleasing new tunes and a big star performance. And you didn't have to take out a loan or access a government program to afford tickets.”
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Talkin' Broadway
February 8th, 2019

“A wonderful performer in her own right, you can see and hear Cusack struggling to reshape the role to match her acting and singing style. It's not that her performance is boring or incompetent; it is just a forced fit that never catches hold...The same could be said for pretty much the entire cast...Encores! has long abandoned simple stagings of musicals in favor of well-wrought productions. This undercooked 'Call Me Madam,' while hardly a disaster, does not live up to its own standards.”
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New York Stage Review
February 7th, 2019

"It would take quite a fabricator to wax excessively enthusiastic about the Crouse-Lindsay script...What 'Call Me Madam' has in carloads is the Berlin score, undoubtedly tossed off in green-apple-quick time when—unlike today’s scores too often—melodic scores were expected and delivered...It could be said that 'Call Me Madam' is a period piece. It also could, and can, be said that, in this incarnation at least, it remains a joyfully entertaining piece."
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New York Stage Review
February 7th, 2019

"The new 'Call Me Madam' satisfactorily delivers what they used to call a good old-fashioned musical, with sly cracks from the jokebook interrupted by a parade of brightly tuneful but not especially relevant songs. This is accomplished in high fashion, with some enjoyably charming turns from the players...'Call Me Madam' is, yes, enjoyable and cotton candy to enthusiasts of the genre. But the holes are apparent...It’s the ministrations of choreographer Jones that most delight the crowd."
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Theater Pizzazz
February 7th, 2019

"Cusack soon makes the role of Sally, who is appointed to be ambassador to the tiny European duchy of Lichtenburg and ends up way too involved in its affairs - in every sense of the word - her own. She has a down-home way of speaking that is ideal for the Oklahoma-born heiress; a warmth that makes it easy to see why the ultra-suave Cosmo Constantine (the velvet-voiced Davis) would fall in love with her; and a strong yet supple voice that lends itself beautifully to numbers."
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